The Coming China Wars: Where they Will Be Fought and How they Can Be Won

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China's breakneck industrialization is placing it on a collision course with the entire world. Tomorrow's China Wars will be fought over everything from decent jobs, livable wages, and leading-edge technologies to strategic resources such as oil, copper, and steel...even food, water, and air. In The Coming China Wars, best-selling author Peter Navarro previews all these potential conflicts—and reveals the urgent, radical decisions that must be made to avoid catastrophe.

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Overview

China's breakneck industrialization is placing it on a collision course with the entire world. Tomorrow's China Wars will be fought over everything from decent jobs, livable wages, and leading-edge technologies to strategic resources such as oil, copper, and steel...even food, water, and air. In The Coming China Wars, best-selling author Peter Navarro previews all these potential conflicts—and reveals the urgent, radical decisions that must be made to avoid catastrophe.

You'll learn how China's thirst for oil is driving nuclear proliferation in Iran, genocide in the Sudan, even Japan's remilitarization. You'll discover China's shocking role in the drug trade and how its reborn flesh trade may help trigger tomorrow's worst AIDS crisis. Navarro also reveals how China has become the world's most ruthless imperialist...how it is promoting global environmental disaster... and, perhaps most terrifying of all, how this nuclear superpower and pirate nation may be spiraling toward internal chaos.

The threat is real. We all must come to understand it and then act! Start here and now by arming yourself with the information and insights of The Coming China Wars.

The "China Price": Conquering the world's export markets

The real story behind China’s “weapons of mass production”

China versus U.S.: The "blood for oil" flashpoints

The coming U.S./China showdown over oil

Pirate Nation: China's state-sanctioned thievery

How China's counterfeit drugs and products can literally kill you

Triggering tomorrow's worst AIDS crisis

China's 21st century flesh trade: The seeds of a global health disaster

"Peter Navarro has captured the breadth of areas where China and the United States have fundamental conflicts of business, economic and strategic interests. He puts this into a global context demonstrating where China's current development course can lead to conflict. His recommendations for nations to coalesce to respond to the challenges posed by China are practical. This book should be in the hands of every businessperson, economist and policy-maker."

–Dr. Larry M. Wortzel, Chairman, US-China Economic and Security Review Commission

"The Coming China Wars is a gripping, fact-filled account of the dark side of China's rise that will be of interest to anyone interested in this complex and fascinating country. Navarro makes no pretense toward searching for the middle ground in the China debate. He issues a call to arms for China and the rest of the world to act now to address the country's mounting problems–pollution, public health, intellectual property piracy, resource scarcity and more–or risk both serious instability within China and military conflict between China and other major powers."

–Elizabeth C. Economy, C.V. Starr Senior Fellow and Director of Asia Studies, Council on Foreign Relations

"What Al Gore does for climate change, Peter Navarro does for China. This book will hit you right between the eyes. A gargantuan wake-up call."

–Stuart L. Hart, S.C. Johnson Chair of Sustainable Global Enterprise, Cornell University, Author of "Capitalism at the Crossroads"

"The Coming China Wars has a wealth of fascinating information about the impact of China on the world and the perils it creates.

Because of China's great importance, this is a book we should all read."

–D. Quinn Mills, Alfred J. Weatherhead Jr. Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School

"This is a well researched and illuminating book and is a necessary counter to a large body of opinion that posits an inevitable and even peaceful rise of China and chooses to ignore most of the author's message."

–Richard Fisher, Vice President, International Assessment and Strategy Center

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780132281287
  • Publisher: FT Press
  • Publication date: 11/2/2006
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.25 (w) x 9.28 (h) x 0.95 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter Navarro is a business professor at the University of California-Irvine. He is the author of the path-breaking management book, The Well-Timed Strategy, and the bestselling investment book If It's Raining in Brazil, Buy Starbucks. His unique and internationally recognized expertise lies in his "big picture" application of a highly sophisticated but easily accessible macroeconomic analysis of the business environment and financial markets for investors and corporate executives.

Navarro's articles have appeared in a wide range of publications, from Business Week, the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, and Wall Street Journal to the Harvard Business Review, the Sloan Management Review, and the Journal of Business. Professor Navarro is a widely sought after and gifted public speaker. He has appeared frequently on Bloomberg TV and radio, CNN, CNBC, and NPR, as well as on all three major network news shows.

His free weekly investment newsletter is published at www. peternavarro.com.

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Read an Excerpt

IntroductionIntroductionNews Release, October 25, 2012U.S.-China Chill Melts Down World Markets

NEW YORK—Global stock exchanges were devastated this week by the worst collapse in history as a wave of panic selling followed the sun from Asia through Europe and back to Wall Street. The pandemonium was triggered by a Chinese government announcement that it would no longer finance the mounting budget and trade deficits of a "profligate United States" that "refuses to live within its means" and that "insists on scapegoating China for its own internal economic problems." Nor would China continue to try to prop up "an increasingly worthless dollar."

As the Chinese began dumping U.S. assets on Wall Street, both stock and bond prices plummeted. The panic soon spread to other exchanges around the world as gold soared to more than $1,000 an ounce and fear of a global depression deepened.

China's actions have been widely interpreted as harsh retaliation for U.S. congressional passage of stiff protectionist tariffs on a wide range of manufactured goods. With the presidential election less than a month away, both houses of Congress up for electoral grabs, and the U.S. economy stuck in reverse, Republicans and Democrats alike are pushing additional legislation addressing everything from the growing trade in Chinese counterfeit goods, illegal drugs, and ballistic missiles to the international spillover from China's mounting environmental pollution.

It's been a tough year for Sino-U.S. relations. In January, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations stormed out in protest over "the repeated crass commercialuse" by China of its U.N. veto to "shield terrorist regimes such as Iran from diplomatic sanctions in exchange for oil." In March, China's president abruptly cancelled a state visit after the U.S. Treasury Department branded China a "currency manipulator." During an unusually hot August that raised collateral fears of global warming, the U.S. Pacific Fleet engaged in a tense, week-long standoff over Taiwan with China's recently acquired, and nuclear missile-equipped, blue water navy.

Meanwhile, domestic unrest in China continues to escalate as an increasingly restive population seeks greater income equality, more worker rights, improved health care, a cleaner environment, a halt to widespread government corruption, and an end to massive public works projects such as the Three Gorges Dam that have displaced millions of people without adequately compensating them. A recent report released by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency has warned that should such domestic unrest reach a boiling point in China, the result may be "sharper military conflicts with the United States, Taiwan, and possibly even Japan as Chinese leaders seek to unify the now increasingly fractured nation against a 'common enemy.'"

The best of economic times for China are fast becoming the worst of times for the rest of us. China's "cowboy capitalism" and amoral foreign policies are triggering a whole range of economic, financial, environmental, political, and military tsunamis that threaten to engulf us—as well as the Chinese people. The ever-growing dangers lay in a model of rapid, unsustainable economic growth, coupled with a wanton disregard for both human life and intellectual property. The myriad dangers from the Coming China Wars are real—and increasingly personal. Consider these scenarios based on actual events:

  • Your father almost dies from a massive heart attack because the "Lipitor" prescription he filled on the Internet was laced with Chinese fakes. Your mother breaks her hip because the phony "Evista" medication she took for osteoporosis was nothing more than molded Chinese chalk. Your house gets robbed by a drug addict high on methamphetamines made from ephedra grass grown on Chinese state-run farms and transported to New York via Panama by Triad gangs.

  • You walk out of a Wal-Mart with a big smile and a large basket laden with cheap Chinese goods ranging from a fancy new laser printer and plasma TV to shirts, socks, and running shoes. Your smile quickly turns to a frown as your eyes begin to sting and lungs burn from the Asian "brown cloud" now visible on the horizon. It is 90-proof "Chinese chog"—a particularly toxic atmospheric smog that has hitchhiked on the jet stream all the way from China's industrial heartland where everything in your basket was first manufactured.

  • Your bank balance drops precipitously as rising interest rates drive your adjustable rate monthly mortgage payment off the charts and as you shell out more than you ever dreamed to fill your gas tank. Your mortgage payments are being held hostage to China's currency-manipulation policies. You pay dearly at the pump because of the price-shocking effects of China's rapidly rising thirst for oil.

The Coming China Wars is not just a story about how China's emergence as the world's "factory floor" is affecting you and your pocketbook. The story is far larger than any one of us or any single country. This book takes a tough, hard look at the eight major China Wars already well underway:1. The Not-So-Swashbuckling Piracy Wars

Following a centuries-old tradition of skullduggery in the South China Seas, China has become the world's largest pirate nation. China's modern buccaneers, with the strong support of their government, are not just stealing software and Hollywood movies on DVDs. They are blatantly counterfeiting virtually the entire alphabet of goods—from air conditioners, automobiles, and brake pads to razors, refrigerators, and the world's most recognizable pharmaceuticals such as Lipitor, Norvasc, and Viagra.

In the process, these pirates are posing grave health risks to hundreds of millions of people. They are also destroying all semblance of global intellectual property law protections vitally needed to spur innovation.2. The 21st Century Opium Wars

With an unholy triangle of Triad gangsters, international smugglers, and corrupt Communist Party officials as cartel kingpins, China has emerged as one of the world's biggest dope dealers. Most despicably, China is not just the world's "factory floor" for legitimate goods but also for the so-called precursor chemicals used to produce all four of the world's major hard drugs: cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and Ecstasy.

China has also retained its historical role as a major transit area for opium from the Golden Triangle, and it is rapidly emerging as a highly efficient production center for Ecstasy and speed. Not coincidentally, Chinese criminal syndicates are awash in illicit cash, and China's banking system is becoming an important hub for global money laundering.3. The Air Pollution and Global Warming Wars

With claim to 16 of the world's 20 dirtiest cities in the World Bank's environmental Hall of Shame, China has been dubiously crowned as the most polluted nation on Earth. As a result of its rapid industrialization and lax environmental controls, China's prodigious toxic emissions are now spewing well beyond its environmentally porous borders.

Storms regularly rise up from China's Inner Mongolian desert steppes and blanket Korea and Japan with tons upon tons of toxics-laden dust. Chinese chog regularly hitchhikes along the jet stream, only to descend thousands of miles away in big cities such as Los Angeles and Vancouver and to despoil visibility in pristine towns such as Aspen. With its belching coal plants and rapidly multiplying automobile fleet, China will soon eclipse the United States as the single largest contributor to global warming.4. The "Blood for Oil" Wars

With its economy rocketing, China has emerged as the world's second largest petroleum consumer behind only the United States. Astonishingly, China now accounts for almost half the growth in global oil demand and is the primary catalyst for an oil market hurtling toward $100 a barrel.

To lock down its petroleum supplies—and lock the rest of the world out—China has adopted a reprehensible foreign policy based on President Hu Jintao's amoral mantra of "just business, no political conditions." It has shipped ballistic missiles and transferred nuclear weapons technologies to the radical Iranian regime, used its diplomatic veto in the United Nations to sanction genocide in the Sudan, and facilitated the looting of public treasuries by dictators in oil- and mineral-rich African countries from Angola to Zimbabwe.

This unconscionable blood for oil diplomacy has resulted in the slaughter of millions, the impoverishment of millions more, and a rapid spike in nuclear proliferation in both the Middle East and Asia.5. The New Imperialist Wars

In a supreme historical irony, one of imperialism's worst former victims has become the 21st century's most relentlessly imperialistic nation. From Brazil, Cuba, and Venezuela to Equatorial Guinea and the Ivory Coast, China dangles lavish, low-interest loans and sophisticated weapons systems as bait. It then uses its "weapons of mass construction"—a huge army of engineers and laborers—to build everything from roads and dams to parliament buildings and palaces.

After these unwitting countries are driven ever deeper into China's debt, China's imperialistic quid pro quo is the rapid extraction of the country's raw materials—Bolivian tin, Chilean copper, Cuban nickel, Congolese cobalt, gold from Sierra Leone, Rwandan tungsten, and the vast mineral wealth of South Africa.

As the despotic puppets running China's "new colonies" transfer billions in bribes to their Swiss bank accounts, the peasants these despots rule over slide ever deeper into poverty.6. The Damnable Dam and Water Wars

China is the dam-happiest place on Earth. With far too little water, far too much of that water horribly polluted, and the once-mighty Yellow River running dry for more than 200 days a year, China is facing a severe water crisis that already pits angry farmers against encroaching industrialists, millions of displaced "peasants with pitchforks" against corrupt government officials, and downstream versus upstream provinces.

This is also a fierce diplomatic battle being waged between upstream and downstream countries. Upstream, China is constructing a phalanx of mega-dams on the Mekong River despite the strong protests of the downstream countries of Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam. These dams—including one that will be more than 100 stories tall and the tallest in the world—now threaten the food supply, transit routes, and livelihoods of more than 50 million people living in the Lower Mekong River Basin. Already, the Mekong has recorded its lowest levels ever and has flowed close to rock bottom near the end of its journey in Vietnam.

Precisely because of these many and varied economically driven conflicts, we and our children are destined to fight a complex and highly interrelated series of wars with China on many, many fronts. As you will see in the chapters that follow, a reckless and ruthless Chinese government is directly to blame for many of these Coming China Wars. However, it is also disturbingly true that China's hyper-growth is causing the world's most populous nation to spin out of the control of its leaders.

As China's economy continues to grow at unprecedented rates, the "strange bedfellow" combination of a totally unrestrained free market capitalism operating under a harshly repressive totalitarian umbrella is becoming more and more like a political and social Molotov cocktail rather than an exemplary economic model for the rest of the world. That is precisely why the greatest danger to the world community may be China's coming "wars from within." These wars from within may be triggered by any number of internal ticking economic and demographic time bombs that threaten to bring on that which the Chinese people fear most—"chaos" or luan.7. China's Wars from Within

Over the past decade, the number of protests and riots in China has risen to nearly 100,000 annually. This is hardly surprising to any astute China watcher. People are being pushed beyond tolerance as the Chinese countryside becomes a slave labor camp and dumping ground for every imaginable pollutant.

The rural peasantry is being sucked dry by wastrel government tax collectors. Corrupt local government officials seize land on behalf of developers, pocket the monies that are supposed to compensate villagers, and then enlist local gangsters to quell protests.

In the big cities, unpaid construction workers leap to their deaths in protest of wages that go callously unpaid. Meanwhile, on China's Western prairies, ethnic separatist tensions continue to smolder over the ongoing "Hanification" of the mostly Muslim population on the Western frontier.8. China's Ticking Time Bombs

China is rapidly graying—getting old faster than it is getting rich. China is now facing a pension crisis that will make solving the unfunded social security liabilities of equally graying countries such as the United States, Japan, and Germany look like strolls through the park.

China is also a nation getting increasingly sick. Environmental pollution serves as a deadly catalyst for an explosion of myriad cancers and an epidemic of respiratory and heart diseases. This rapid rise in ill health is coming precisely when China's once-vaunted public health-care system has totally unraveled.

Adding to these extreme pressures is an HIV/AIDS epidemic that may soon become the worst in the world. This epidemic began with the most scurrilous HIV/AIDS blood donor scandal on the planet. It is being rapidly fueled by rampant intravenous drug use, a late-blooming 1960s-style sexual revolution, and the explosive reemergence of China's once-infamous flesh trade.

The radical remedies and reforms that will be required to avoid the chaos, casualties, and hardships of the Coming China Wars—both within China and beyond its borders—will never occur unless we gain a much better understanding of the basic economic forces driving these political, financial, social, energy, and environmental conflicts. My abiding hope, particularly for the children, is that a better understanding of the complexities of the economic origins of the Coming China Wars will help lead to their peaceful resolution. Cultivating such an understanding—and calling China and the rest of the world to action—are the ultimate goals of this book. The fictional News Release from the year 2012 leading off this Introduction is just one glimpse of a future that we all should urgently seek to avoid.

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1: The "China Price" and Weapons of Mass Production 1

Chapter 2: China's Counterfeit Economy and Not-So-Swashbuckling Pirates 21

Chapter 3: Killing Us (and Them) Softly With Their Coal 45

Chapter 4: The "Blood for Oil" Wars—The Sum of All Chinese Fears 65

Chapter 5: The "New Imperialist" Wars and Weapons of Mass Construction 87

Chapter 6: The 21st Century Opium Wars—The World’s Emperor of "Precursor Chemicals" 109

Chapter 7: The Damnable Dam Wars and Drums along the Mekong 129

Chapter 8: The Bread and Water Wars—Nary a (Clean) Drop to Drink 143

Chapter 9: China’s Wars from Within—The Dragon Comes Apart at the Seams 157

Chapter 10: Of "Bloodheads," Gray Dragons, and Other "Ticking Time Bombs" 177

Chapter 11: How to Fight—And Win!—The Coming China Wars 199

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Preface

Introduction

News Release, October 25, 2012

U.S.-China Chill Melts Down World Markets

NEW YORK—Global stock exchanges were devastated this week by the worst collapse in history as a wave of panic selling followed the sun from Asia through Europe and back to Wall Street. The pandemonium was triggered by a Chinese government announcement that it would no longer finance the mounting budget and trade deficits of a "profligate United States" that "refuses to live within its means" and that "insists on scapegoating China for its own internal economic problems." Nor would China continue to try to prop up "an increasingly worthless dollar."

As the Chinese began dumping U.S. assets on Wall Street, both stock and bond prices plummeted. The panic soon spread to other exchanges around the world as gold soared to more than $1,000 an ounce and fear of a global depression deepened.

China's actions have been widely interpreted as harsh retaliation for U.S. congressional passage of stiff protectionist tariffs on a wide range of manufactured goods. With the presidential election less than a month away, both houses of Congress up for electoral grabs, and the U.S. economy stuck in reverse, Republicans and Democrats alike are pushing additional legislation addressing everything from the growing trade in Chinese counterfeit goods, illegal drugs, and ballistic missiles to the international spillover from China's mounting environmental pollution.

It's been a tough year for Sino-U.S. relations. In January, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations stormed out in protest over "the repeated crass commercial use" by China of its U.N. veto to "shield terrorist regimes such as Iran from diplomatic sanctions in exchange for oil." In March, China's president abruptly cancelled a state visit after the U.S. Treasury Department branded China a "currency manipulator." During an unusually hot August that raised collateral fears of global warming, the U.S. Pacific Fleet engaged in a tense, week-long standoff over Taiwan with China's recently acquired, and nuclear missile-equipped, blue water navy.

Meanwhile, domestic unrest in China continues to escalate as an increasingly restive population seeks greater income equality, more worker rights, improved health care, a cleaner environment, a halt to widespread government corruption, and an end to massive public works projects such as the Three Gorges Dam that have displaced millions of people without adequately compensating them. A recent report released by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency has warned that should such domestic unrest reach a boiling point in China, the result may be "sharper military conflicts with the United States, Taiwan, and possibly even Japan as Chinese leaders seek to unify the now increasingly fractured nation against a 'common enemy.'"

The best of economic times for China are fast becoming the worst of times for the rest of us. China's "cowboy capitalism" and amoral foreign policies are triggering a whole range of economic, financial, environmental, political, and military tsunamis that threaten to engulf us—as well as the Chinese people. The ever-growing dangers lay in a model of rapid, unsustainable economic growth, coupled with a wanton disregard for both human life and intellectual property. The myriad dangers from the Coming China Wars are real—and increasingly personal. Consider these scenarios based on actual events:

  • Your father almost dies from a massive heart attack because the "Lipitor" prescription he filled on the Internet was laced with Chinese fakes. Your mother breaks her hip because the phony "Evista" medication she took for osteoporosis was nothing more than molded Chinese chalk. Your house gets robbed by a drug addict high on methamphetamines made from ephedra grass grown on Chinese state-run farms and transported to New York via Panama by Triad gangs.
  • You walk out of a Wal-Mart with a big smile and a large basket laden with cheap Chinese goods ranging from a fancy new laser printer and plasma TV to shirts, socks, and running shoes. Your smile quickly turns to a frown as your eyes begin to sting and lungs burn from the Asian "brown cloud" now visible on the horizon. It is 90-proof "Chinese chog"—a particularly toxic atmospheric smog that has hitchhiked on the jet stream all the way from China's industrial heartland where everything in your basket was first manufactured.
  • Your bank balance drops precipitously as rising interest rates drive your adjustable rate monthly mortgage payment off the charts and as you shell out more than you ever dreamed to fill your gas tank. Your mortgage payments are being held hostage to China's currency-manipulation policies. You pay dearly at the pump because of the price-shocking effects of China's rapidly rising thirst for oil.

The Coming China Wars is not just a story about how China's emergence as the world's "factory floor" is affecting you and your pocketbook. The story is far larger than any one of us or any single country. This book takes a tough, hard look at the eight major China Wars already well underway:

1. The Not-So-Swashbuckling Piracy Wars

Following a centuries-old tradition of skullduggery in the South China Seas, China has become the world's largest pirate nation. China's modern buccaneers, with the strong support of their government, are not just stealing software and Hollywood movies on DVDs. They are blatantly counterfeiting virtually the entire alphabet of goods—from air conditioners, automobiles, and brake pads to razors, refrigerators, and the world's most recognizable pharmaceuticals such as Lipitor, Norvasc, and Viagra.

In the process, these pirates are posing grave health risks to hundreds of millions of people. They are also destroying all semblance of global intellectual property law protections vitally needed to spur innovation.

2. The 21st Century Opium Wars

With an unholy triangle of Triad gangsters, international smugglers, and corrupt Communist Party officials as cartel kingpins, China has emerged as one of the world's biggest dope dealers. Most despicably, China is not just the world's "factory floor" for legitimate goods but also for the so-called precursor chemicals used to produce all four of the world's major hard drugs: cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and Ecstasy.

China has also retained its historical role as a major transit area for opium from the Golden Triangle, and it is rapidly emerging as a highly efficient production center for Ecstasy and speed. Not coincidentally, Chinese criminal syndicates are awash in illicit cash, and China's banking system is becoming an important hub for global money laundering.

3. The Air Pollution and Global Warming Wars

With claim to 16 of the world's 20 dirtiest cities in the World Bank's environmental Hall of Shame, China has been dubiously crowned as the most polluted nation on Earth. As a result of its rapid industrialization and lax environmental controls, China's prodigious toxic emissions are now spewing well beyond its environmentally porous borders.

Storms regularly rise up from China's Inner Mongolian desert steppes and blanket Korea and Japan with tons upon tons of toxics-laden dust. Chinese chog regularly hitchhikes along the jet stream, only to descend thousands of miles away in big cities such as Los Angeles and Vancouver and to despoil visibility in pristine towns such as Aspen. With its belching coal plants and rapidly multiplying automobile fleet, China will soon eclipse the United States as the single largest contributor to global warming.

4. The "Blood for Oil" Wars

With its economy rocketing, China has emerged as the world's second largest petroleum consumer behind only the United States. Astonishingly, China now accounts for almost half the growth in global oil demand and is the primary catalyst for an oil market hurtling toward $100 a barrel.

To lock down its petroleum supplies—and lock the rest of the world out—China has adopted a reprehensible foreign policy based on President Hu Jintao's amoral mantra of "just business, no political conditions." It has shipped ballistic missiles and transferred nuclear weapons technologies to the radical Iranian regime, used its diplomatic veto in the United Nations to sanction genocide in the Sudan, and facilitated the looting of public treasuries by dictators in oil- and mineral-rich African countries from Angola to Zimbabwe.

This unconscionable blood for oil diplomacy has resulted in the slaughter of millions, the impoverishment of millions more, and a rapid spike in nuclear proliferation in both the Middle East and Asia.

5. The New Imperialist Wars

In a supreme historical irony, one of imperialism's worst former victims has become the 21st century's most relentlessly imperialistic nation. From Brazil, Cuba, and Venezuela to Equatorial Guinea and the Ivory Coast, China dangles lavish, low-interest loans and sophisticated weapons systems as bait. It then uses its "weapons of mass construction"—a huge army of engineers and laborers—to build everything from roads and dams to parliament buildings and palaces.

After these unwitting countries are driven ever deeper into China's debt, China's imperialistic quid pro quo is the rapid extraction of the country's raw materials—Bolivian tin, Chilean copper, Cuban nickel, Congolese cobalt, gold from Sierra Leone, Rwandan tungsten, and the vast mineral wealth of South Africa.

As the despotic puppets running China's "new colonies" transfer billions in bribes to their Swiss bank accounts, the peasants these despots rule over slide ever deeper into poverty.

6. The Damnable Dam and Water Wars

China is the dam-happiest place on Earth. With far too little water, far too much of that water horribly polluted, and the once-mighty Yellow River running dry for more than 200 days a year, China is facing a severe water crisis that already pits angry farmers against encroaching industrialists, millions of displaced "peasants with pitchforks" against corrupt government officials, and downstream versus upstream provinces.

This is also a fierce diplomatic battle being waged between upstream and downstream countries. Upstream, China is constructing a phalanx of mega-dams on the Mekong River despite the strong protests of the downstream countries of Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam. These dams—including one that will be more than 100 stories tall and the tallest in the world—now threaten the food supply, transit routes, and livelihoods of more than 50 million people living in the Lower Mekong River Basin. Already, the Mekong has recorded its lowest levels ever and has flowed close to rock bottom near the end of its journey in Vietnam.

Precisely because of these many and varied economically driven conflicts, we and our children are destined to fight a complex and highly interrelated series of wars with China on many, many fronts. As you will see in the chapters that follow, a reckless and ruthless Chinese government is directly to blame for many of these Coming China Wars. However, it is also disturbingly true that China's hyper-growth is causing the world's most populous nation to spin out of the control of its leaders.

As China's economy continues to grow at unprecedented rates, the "strange bedfellow" combination of a totally unrestrained free market capitalism operating under a harshly repressive totalitarian umbrella is becoming more and more like a political and social Molotov cocktail rather than an exemplary economic model for the rest of the world. That is precisely why the greatest danger to the world community may be China's coming "wars from within." These wars from within may be triggered by any number of internal ticking economic and demographic time bombs that threaten to bring on that which the Chinese people fear most—"chaos" or luan.

7. China's Wars from Within

Over the past decade, the number of protests and riots in China has risen to nearly 100,000 annually. This is hardly surprising to any astute China watcher. People are being pushed beyond tolerance as the Chinese countryside becomes a slave labor camp and dumping ground for every imaginable pollutant.

The rural peasantry is being sucked dry by wastrel government tax collectors. Corrupt local government officials seize land on behalf of developers, pocket the monies that are supposed to compensate villagers, and then enlist local gangsters to quell protests.

In the big cities, unpaid construction workers leap to their deaths in protest of wages that go callously unpaid. Meanwhile, on China's Western prairies, ethnic separatist tensions continue to smolder over the ongoing "Hanification" of the mostly Muslim population on the Western frontier.

8. China's Ticking Time Bombs

China is rapidly graying—getting old faster than it is getting rich. China is now facing a pension crisis that will make solving the unfunded social security liabilities of equally graying countries such as the United States, Japan, and Germany look like strolls through the park.

China is also a nation getting increasingly sick. Environmental pollution serves as a deadly catalyst for an explosion of myriad cancers and an epidemic of respiratory and heart diseases. This rapid rise in ill health is coming precisely when China's once-vaunted public health-care system has totally unraveled.

Adding to these extreme pressures is an HIV/AIDS epidemic that may soon become the worst in the world. This epidemic began with the most scurrilous HIV/AIDS blood donor scandal on the planet. It is being rapidly fueled by rampant intravenous drug use, a late-blooming 1960s-style sexual revolution, and the explosive reemergence of China's once-infamous flesh trade.

The radical remedies and reforms that will be required to avoid the chaos, casualties, and hardships of the Coming China Wars—both within China and beyond its borders—will never occur unless we gain a much better understanding of the basic economic forces driving these political, financial, social, energy, and environmental conflicts. My abiding hope, particularly for the children, is that a better understanding of the complexities of the economic origins of the Coming China Wars will help lead to their peaceful resolution. Cultivating such an understanding—and calling China and the rest of the world to action—are the ultimate goals of this book. The fictional News Release from the year 2012 leading off this Introduction is just one glimpse of a future that we all should urgently seek to avoid.

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2008

    there are many more books on China that are more objective and with more insightful suggestions than this one

    The main argument of this review is that there are many more books on China which are far more objective and provide more insightful suggestions 'e.g. Will Hutton's: The Writing on the Wall'. Please, do not waste your time and money on this. Below is an outline of why this book is unsatisfactory. 1) Questionable sources ¿ despite the fact that there are plenty of scholarly articles aside from the fact that this author is a professor, the inside of his note says 'Much of the research conducted for this book was done over the internet. 2) His tone starting from the very cover of the book primes the reader for combat ¿ as history has repeatedly shown, this is not the most effective way of solving international relations. The following are explanations for my two main arguments. 1) Although Mr. Navarro is a professor, his book does not cite many scholarly sources, his books research is indeed mostly that of the internet. The author does not even cite online dailies of China that are actually available in English e.g. ChinaTechNews and Shanghai Daily. Many of his sources are out dated as well, as he is addressing current issues, much of his sources are from prior to the era of Hu Jintao. 2) Navarro claims in his book that he is not trying to catalyze any kind of conflict. Yet the rest of his book says otherwise. In this book, these potential international conflicts are addressed as a ¿war¿ to ¿fight¿ and ¿win¿. Such wording primes the reader for combat. These rising issues with China are not new and the US government was long working very hard for the best outcomes. What I¿m concerned about most is international US relations. We¿ve already started conflict with Iraq in looking for WMDs as well as Korea. Starting conflicts with China is potentially disastrous. The time is still there to make collaborations and avoid many conflicts to begin with. Other countries are rising to power, not just China, and the US will have to work with it like it or not. But it is this very attitude the author presents of enemy seeking, addressing it as a war, deep suspicions 'which were already acted on with Iraq and Korean and despite all the searching has turned up insufficient evidence' that fuels hostility. It¿s detrimental to international relationships. If you are still unsure, you can buy the book, read his predictions for 2012 and check the validity of those projections.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 22, 2007

    a reviewer

    This relentlessly one-sided polemic against China is what it is, without any pretense of objectivity or balance. Peter Navarro has pulled together charges and allegations, most of which are not new, and many of which have been discussed at some length in the press, to make the argument that China is a threat to the world. Even if the book is heavy-handed, intemperate, badly proofread and even unfair, it is a worthwhile antidote to many recent books about the China miracle. Notwithstanding its very evident point-of-view, we believe Navarro's case deserves consideration. He says China's miracle depends ¿ to a greater degree than many experts and observers have been willing to acknowledge ¿ on theft of intellectual property, ruthless exploitation of labor, drug trafficking and violation of the norms of diplomatic good conduct (for example, supplying dictators with weapons of mass destruction). However, take everything with a measure of salt. The author faced a reporting challenge and acknowledges that his sources include unverifiable Web content and anti-China propaganda organs.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2008

    little informed purely opinion

    Very conventional in its analysis and knowledge. Author has shed little light on the real issues. Lacks solid understanding about dynamics and changes from inside China and beyond.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 24, 2007

    eye opener

    a clear explanation of world events and a wake up call for what is to come.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 2006

    Interesting & Informative - What More Could You Ask?

    I am fascinated with China and by its potential role in the world's political economy. When I picked up this book, I was not looking for a polemic or for a diatribe. And I was not disappointed. I found myself engrossed in a fact-filled description of current conditions as well as an enlightened view of what is likely to occur. I recommend it highly for anyone who wants to understand the world around them.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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