Dick Morris: Trump Is Waging (and Winning) a Peaceful World War III Against China


The stakes could not be higher in President Trump’s economic trade war with China. They go far beyond any usual economic conflict and amount to an economic World War III.

The issue is not just American jobs. It is the desire of one nation to rule the world — the same paradigm as we confronted in World War II and in the Cold War.

The current global ruler is the benign United States. We seek economic power to help the nations of the world — all of them — live free from want and fear. Whatever our shortcomings, our domination is benign and important only to stop more malign contenders from getting their hands on global power.

Were China just another aspirant seeking to surpass America, wanting its turn at number one — as was Japan in the 1970s and 1980s — it would not be the matter of national security that the threat from China represents. If China’s ambition was just more wealth and power, go to it. Have at it.

But China’s aspiration to worldwide domination is anything but benign. It is a combination of Spanish mercantilism and English imperialism, seasoned with Prussian militarism and Russian expansionism. The goal is to reduce the rest of the world to colonial or dominion status, controlled politically, socially, intellectually, and economically by China.

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In turn, China is run by a handful of men in Beijing who need not pay the slightest attention to the views of those they govern or the nations they dominate.

The hope of the world in resisting this quest for domination is the trade war being waged by Donald Trump. His tariffs against China and his economic sanctions are the kind of early intervention that Britain and France should have made when Hitler invaded the Rhineland in 1936.

Those who plead that the trade war will raise domestic prices in America or risk more international tension are the modern day appeasers, the Chamberlains, willfully ignorant of the threat China poses.

As with all imperialism, China cloaked its ambitions initially in a disguise of grievance and necessity. As explained in the brand new prophetic book by Jonathan T.D. Ward, “China’s Vision of Victory,” China cites its history as one of the most cruelly exploited colonial victims of the 19th Century to justify its policies.

“We are just trying,” they contend, “to recapture what was ours’ and was cruelly taken from us in the 19th Century Opium Wars.”

In more modern terms, Beijing justifies its global ambitions as a way to satiate its massive need for natural resources to fuel its development.

It needs naval bases all over the Persian Gulf, off India’s and Pakistan’s coast, in Sri Lanka, and on the Horn of Africa to protect its oil imports from the Middle East. Where it cannot find client states to manipulate or buy, it builds man-made islands in the South China Sea to serve as unsinkable aircraft carriers in its imperial rampage.

China uses massive state subsidies, government ownership of business and currency manipulation — all explicitly forbidden by the World Trade Organization — to run gigantic trade deficits around the world.

Unlike Japan in the last century, China does very little research and development on its own. It steals everything it needs from foreign businesses, universities, militaries and governments through cyber theft or industrial espionage. It is the pirate of the world.

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And it uses the technology it steals in artificial intelligence, super and quantum computing, and space weaponizing to trump American military power where possible.

Trump realizes that it is through its economic exploitation of the United States that China is fueling its increasingly rapid sprint to global hegemony. Its one-sided commercial relationship with the United States provides the funding and technology it needs to destroy us. He is taking bold and decisive action to stop Beijing in its tracks.

He is cutting through Chinese propaganda in the liberal media and telling the American people the truth about the threat we face.

China’s favorite response to Trump’s forays is to use its might to send the Dow and the Nasdaq into conniptions. But, the power and strength of the American economy is such that they cannot stop us or even slow us down much.

That is for now. In a few years, if we were to continue to ignore the Chinese threat, it will be much more dangerous and capable of greater economic damage.

If Trump’s aggressive defense of our interests succeeds, it will be his greatest accomplishment.

He is the Winston Churchill of the Chinese challenge.

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Dick Morris is a former adviser to President Bill Clinton as well as a political author, pollster and consultant. His most recent book, "50 Shades of Politics," was written with his wife, Eileen McGann.