The Coming War on China, from award winning journalist John Pilger, reveals what the news doesn’t – that the world’s greatest military power, the United States, and the world’s second economic power, China, both nuclear-armed, may well be on the road to war.
Nuclear war is not only imaginable, but planned. The greatest build-up of NATO military forces since the Second World War is under way on the western borders of Russia. On the other side of the world, the rise of China is viewed in Washington as a threat to American dominance.
To counter this, President Obama announced a ‘pivot to Asia’, which meant that almost two-thirds of all US naval forces would be transferred to Asia and the Pacific, their weapons aimed at China. A policy which has been taken up by his successor Donald Trump, who during his election campaign said “We can’t continue to allow China to rape our country and that’s what they’re doing”.
Filmed on five possible front-lines across Asia and the Pacific over two years, the story is told in chapters that connect a secret and ‘forgotten’ past to the rapacious actions of great power today and to a resistance, of which little is known in the West.
Controversial to its core, this hard-hitting anti-Western propaganda film, which looks at the influence of American visual and consumption culture on the rest of the world from a North Korean perspective, has been described as ‘either a damning indictment of 21st Century culture or the best piece of propaganda in a generation.’
Propaganda signals the birth of a new genre-bending generation of film maker. Using the ‘fake North Korean propaganda’ found-footage device, Slavko Martinov first parodies its language and stylings, before targeting the mountain of hypocrisies and contradictions that make up the modern Western narrative. In doing so, Propaganda delivers a devastating blow to those who might be quick to laugh at ‘backward’ ideologies before considering how 21st century political and cultural trends have weakened any claims to the moral high ground.
China’s unprecedented growth has placed it on the verge of overtaking the United States as the world’s preeminent power. But what type of power will China become? In today’s interconnected and globalized world, the answer effects each and every one of us.
In Pakistan and Afghanistan, China’s humanitarian activities and investment in infrastructure have won it the hearts and minds of the people. Yet in Tibet and Xinjiang, China is reviled as an imperialistic abuser of human rights. Will China use its strength to dominate its neighbors and become a 21st century empire, or will China’s youth lead the country towards democracy?
Whether it’s a peaceful rise or potential threat, China’s 21st century emergence as a great world power will change the lives of everyone.