China-Cuba Friendship Poses Growing Challenge To The West

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By Dr. Sawraj Singh

For some time, it is becoming increasingly clear that China is advancing fast towards becoming the most powerful country in the world.  The recent happenings all over the world, particularly China’s growing friendship with Cuba, are showing that there is a fundamental change in the Chinese policies.  China has started asserting its power

and influence whether it is in the economic, political or ideological fields.  China is asserting itself in Asia, Europe, Africa, and Latin America.  China has tremendously improved its relations with Russia and it is in process of improving its relations with Japan. China’s relations with Cuba are becoming closer and warmer. Cuba has started looking up to China.

There have been very important recent happenings in which China has played a

very significant role.  These are:

_____  Chinese delegation visits Cuba

_____  Chinese delegation visits Zimbabwe

_____  China supports Sudanese government

_____  China building highways in Vietnam

_____  Conclusion of Boao Asia forum

A Chinese delegation has just visited Cuba.  President Fidel Castro received the delegation and held a meeting with the delegation.  This was the first official business conducted by Fidel Castro after his illness.  He said that both state-to-state and family-to-family relations between Cuba and China are becoming warmer and warmer, and Cuba is very proud of the great achievements of China.  The trade between the two countries is growing and China has become Cuba’s second largest trading partner.  Fidel Castro, in my opinion, is one of the three leaders who had maximum impact on the history of the

twentieth century.  The other two leaders are Chairman Mao Tse-Tung of China and Ho Chi Minh of Vietnam.  Castro’s praise for China will further enhance China’s standing among the leftists in South America and the western hemisphere.

The western countries, particularly England and America, are very much involved in the efforts to get rid of Robert Mugabe, the President of Zimbabwe.  The western media has tried to project him in the most negative way.  The western countries and media are openly supporting the opposition there.  Robert Mugabe led the armed struggle

to free Zimbabwe, formerly Rhodesia, from the racist colonialists. Welcoming the Chinese delegation, Mugabe praised China for its strong support during the anticolonial struggle as well as after independence.  The Chinese delegation assured Mugabe of continuous support.

China has supported the Sudanese government.  The western countries have offered sanctions on Sudan and seem to be supporting rebels in Darfur.  The west also appears to be supporting Chad in its conflict with Sudan.  The western countries are pressing the United Nations for applying sanctions on Sudan.  China has used its influence

on the Sudanese government and made it agree to accept United Nations troops.  China has also called upon the United Nations not to apply any sanctions.

China’s relations with Vietnam are improving.  China is building four highways, linking Hanoi with four Vietnamese cities and to the border cities in China.  The trade between the two countries is rapidly growing.  After the completion of the highways, the trade will grow still more rapidly.

The Boao Asia forum has just ended in China.  Among the keynote speakers were Philippines President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz of Pakistan, and Bill Gates of Microsoft.  The speakers talked about the great and exemplary progress made by China.  They felt that Asia and the world should learn from the Chinese example.  The Chinese model of development is different than the western model.  Whereas the western approach is linear, focused only on economic growth, the Chinese concept is of sustained development.  This includes aspects of social harmony and environmental concern besides economic development.

China is offering a more balanced and multilateral approach to its internal problems as well as for global problems.  In the last two centuries, under western domination, the western absolutist thinking prevailed.  Now, the time has come for trying eastern relativist thinking. Relativism is closer to truth than absolutism.

Dr. Sawraj Singh, MD F.I.C.S. is the Chairman of the Washington State Network for Human Rights and Chairman of the Central Washington Coalition for Social Justice. He can be reached at [email protected].