David Patrikarakos

Beware China’s masked diplomacy

Beware China’s masked diplomacy

'How do you deal toughly with your banker?' This was the not quite rhetorical question that Hillary Clinton asked Australia’s then-prime minister Kevin Rudd at a lunch back in 2010. In the prophylactic language of the diplomat she was then, Clinton was asking how the world should deal with an ever more aggressive China, and she was prescient. Ten years on, Beijing is ascendant. It holds over a trillion dollars of US debt (banker indeed); as of writing, one of its major companies is set to control Britain’s 5G network; and it has spent years hoovering up Africa’s resources with little care for the (admittedly scant) international condemnation it receives or the human rights it violates so egregiously along the way.

David Patrikarakos

Beware China’s masked diplomacy

Beware China’s masked diplomacy

'How do you deal toughly with your banker?' This was the not quite rhetorical question that Hillary Clinton asked Australia’s then-prime minister Kevin Rudd at a lunch back in 2010. In the prophylactic language of the diplomat she was then, Clinton was asking how the world should deal with an ever more aggressive China, and she was prescient. Ten years on, Beijing is ascendant. It holds over a trillion dollars of US debt (banker indeed); as of writing, one of its major companies is set to control Britain’s 5G network; and it has spent years hoovering up Africa’s resources with little care for the (admittedly scant) international condemnation it receives or the human rights it violates so egregiously along the way.

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