Has the West lost it?
The reality that the West has to deal with is that the primary strategic challenge for America is not the same as the primary strategic challenge for Europe. For America, it is China. For Europe, it is the Islamic world at its doorstep in North Africa. Facts are facts. Yet each year, when the best Western strategic thinkers converge at the Munich Security Conference in February, not one Western strategic thinker can state the most obvious and important thing: American and European interests have diverged. The election of Trump has brought this divergence out into the open. It may well go down as one of Trump’s biggest contributions to world history...
Europe’s primary threat is spillover instability from the Islamic world. As long as North Africa and the Middle East are populated with struggling states, migrants will come into Europe, stirring populist parties. However, if Europe helps North Africa to replicate the successful economic development stories of Malaysia (described earlier) and Indonesia, Europe will have built a strategic bulwark against unmanageable migrant flows. In short, it is in Europe’s strategic interest to import the East Asian economic success stories into North Africa. Hence, Europe should work with China, not against China, to build up North Africa.
Has China won?
Americans hold sacrosanct the ideals of freedom of speech, press, assembly, and religion and also believe that every human being is entitled to the same fundamental human rights. The Chinese believe that social needs and social harmony are more important than individual needs and rights and that the prevention of chaos and turbulence is the main goal of governance.