A flag planted on the moon, a quantum computer that makes Western supercomputers obsolete, tens of millions of doses of vaccines promised at a ridiculous price to emerging countries, an economy that is starting again on the hats of wheels and an agreement on investments with the European Union… China ends the year 2020 with a bang. The contrast with Europe and the United States trapped by the pandemic is stark.
In the first half of the year, some Anglo-Saxon observers, including the White House, had called the Covid-19 epidemic a “Chernobyl moment” for the Chinese Communist Party. A catastrophe resulting from an authoritarian power which, seeking to conceal it, only manages to amplify it and, in return, causes its own downfall. More than five years passed between the nuclear disaster in Ukraine in April 1986 and the collapse of the USSR in 1991. We must therefore remain cautious. But a year after the appearance of the first cases of Covid-19 in Wuhan, everything indicates that Xi Jinping’s power has on the contrary been strengthened.
If there is a “Chernobyl moment”, perhaps it concerns the West. Donald Trump has discredited democracy beyond the hopes of dictators of all stripes and Europe is seeing two of its pillars called into question by the virus: the free movement of its citizens and the supposed excellence of its health system.
The West no longer makes the Chinese dream. Great followers of rankings of all kinds, they see only one area where Western countries are still ahead: higher education. But, if the Chinese bourgeoisie continues to save to send its children to the best Anglo-Saxon campuses – once the epidemic is under control – it is no longer to allow them to emigrate but so that they occupy the best places, on their return, in the China of tomorrow.
In such a context, propaganda does not have to be forced. All it takes is for the 7 p.m. television news to show the daily death toll from Covid-19 in the United States just after a report on Beijing’s latest technological success to get the message across on “The superiority of socialism with Chinese characteristics”. It’s fair game. “What would have happened if the situation were the opposite, if it was in China that 300,000 people had died of the coronavirus and that the United States and most of the Western countries had controlled the epidemic?” (…) The attack by the West would have been beyond what is imaginable ”, commented on Global Times December 15. The press continues to oppose the West, which favors “The so-called human rights” to China which, for its part, “Privilege life”.
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