The so-called One China Policy, as currently defined by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and apparently accepted by global power-mongers, is a crass statement of superpower aspirations, racism and xenophobia. People around the world do not speak up against this policy because they fear upsetting “the dragon”, or losing lucrative business opportunities and investments from China. The questionable basis of the policy is never discussed.
The ruling power-elite of one specific race group in China, the Han Chinese, defines the so-called One China Policy and propagates it for all others to accept without question. As a consequence of this policy, cultural and racial diversity – which is inevitable and even desirable in a large country – is deliberately and coercively snuffed out. CCP’s coercive and repressive methods are perfectly well-tailored to assist in the enforcement of the policy.
If any misguided policy is defined on racial basis, it applies in theory to any place in the world where that particular race reaches a dominating status over others. If a suburb of say New York becomes predominantly Han Chinese, does it come under the jurisdiction of this so-called One China Policy? Would CCP and PLA agents enforce the law in that suburb?
By way of contrast, it should be noted that residents of Chinatown in Kolkata are citizens of India, with full citizenship rights and duties. They may continue living in Chinatown, or leave India for better prospects – like all other citizens. Their race plays no role in legal matters, and there is no coercion. They live cheek by jowl with many other communities of India, with vastly different backgrounds. Common humanity guides people’s lives, not vicious ideology or race. This is how India has lived for thousands of years.
What the world needs is a One China Policy that adds value to human life, and serves as a light unto other countries during the dark, gloomy times that the world is going through. This new One China Policy should be based on universal values. It should aim at peace and prosperity for all citizens of China, and goodwill towards all the people of the world.
The value of a society cannot be judged solely in economic terms. True fulfilment requires much more than just low cost manufacturing and cheap labour. Blindly following the prescriptions of Marx and Lenin did not produce lasting happiness in the other big country that experimented with them. Artistic, literary and spiritual self-expression must be allowed, as self-expression is a key ingredient of inner happiness and culture.
Life has a purpose higher than that of merely attaining material prosperity. Depriving citizens from ever experiencing the deep, innate satisfactions of human life can never be sound long-term political strategy. Marx and Lenin were not trustworthy teachers or prophets. Oppression of the human spirit creates short-term gains, but hides huge long-term losses, producing fear and forced conformity in place of creativity and initiative.
People of the world understand that China is a big and important country. It has made remarkable economic progress within a few decades. But her policies of the past few decades are not capable of linear extrapolation to the next few decades. Recalibration is needed – to a better, more assured societal and governmental model.
Perhaps Taiwan provides a better model for the One China Policy that is needed today, a policy that is grounded in people’s hearts, minds and cultures, not in coercive governance. This would be the One China Policy that the whole world can admire and respect.
Prosperity comes with a burden of responsibility. China is too great a country to be known merely for coercion, cheap manufacturing and truculent behaviour. We all hope that it can attain the true greatness of which it is capable. But, for that to happen, CCP must refine its current One China Policy along more universal, human lines. Is that possible?
Lao Tzu said: ‘A leader is best when people barely know he exists. When his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say ‘We did it ourselves’.
CCP seems to be under the illusion that it alone is doing everything worth doing in China; that people are mere puppets. Such policies do not have a long life. People understand things a lot better than “top” policymakers assume to be the case.