Without Democracy, China Will Rise No Farther

Beijing Can’t Compete With Washington Until It Reckons With Its People

Reuters / Athit Perawongmetha

China has been busy rising, and an alarmed United States has been busy repositioning itself. Neither shows much interest in what is arguably the most important test now confronting China’s leadership, which is whether and how it will respond to internal pressures to democratize. Perhaps that is because neither realizes that how far China rises and what happens to U.S.-Chinese relations both depend more on the country’s democratization than on just about anything else. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is apparently so confident in its ability to deliver economic growth and the nation’s “great rejuvenation” that …