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Grayson Ramirez
Grayson Ramirez

The Challenges and Dilemmas of Xi Jinping: The Backlash - A Global Perspective

Download Xi Jinping: The Backlash by Richard McGregor (.ePUB)

If you are interested in learning more about the current leader of China and his impact on the world, you might want to read Xi Jinping: The Backlash by Richard McGregor. This book is a concise and insightful analysis of Xi's rise to power, his achievements and challenges, and his prospects for the future. In this article, I will give you a brief overview of what the book is about, why it is important, and how you can download it. I will also summarize the main arguments of the book and provide some FAQs at the end.

Download Xi Jinping: The Backlash by Richard McGregor (.ePUB)


What is the book about?

Xi Jinping: The Backlash is a book written by Richard McGregor, a journalist and author who has covered China for decades. The book was published in 2019 by Penguin Books as part of their Penguin Specials series. The book is about 100 pages long and can be read in one sitting. It is divided into three chapters: The Rise, The Challenges, and The Future. Each chapter covers a different aspect of Xi's leadership and its implications for China and the world.

Why is the book important?

The book is important because it offers a balanced and nuanced perspective on Xi Jinping, who is arguably the most powerful and influential leader in China since Mao Zedong. Xi has been ruling China since 2012, when he became the general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC), the president of the People's Republic of China (PRC), and the chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC). He has also amassed other titles and positions, such as the core leader of the CPC, the head of various leading groups and commissions, and the paramount leader of China. He has consolidated his power by launching a sweeping anti-corruption campaign, promoting his signature Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), cultivating a cult of personality, and abolishing term limits for his presidency.

However, Xi's ambitious agenda has also provoked a backlash both at home and abroad. He has faced criticism and resistance from various sectors of society, such as intellectuals, entrepreneurs, civil society activists, ethnic minorities, and ordinary citizens. He has also faced challenges from external forces, such as the Hong Kong protests, the trade war with the US, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the growing global distrust and hostility towards China. He has responded to these challenges by tightening his grip on power, suppressing dissent, expanding his influence, and asserting his authority.

The book provides a comprehensive and updated account of these developments and their implications for China's future and its role in the world. It also raises some critical questions about Xi's leadership style, his vision for China, his legitimacy and popularity, his potential successors, and his ability to cope with crises and changes.

How to download the book?

If you want to download the book, you have several options. You can buy the e-book version from various online platforms, such as Amazon, Google Play, Apple Books, Kobo, and Barnes & Noble. You can also borrow the e-book from your local library or from online services, such as OverDrive, Libby, and Hoopla. You can also find some free or pirated copies of the e-book on the internet, but I do not recommend this option for ethical and legal reasons. The e-book format is .ePUB, which is compatible with most e-readers and devices. You can also convert the .ePUB file to other formats, such as .PDF or .MOBI, using online tools, such as Calibre or Zamzar.

The main arguments of the book

Xi Jinping's rise to power

The first chapter of the book traces Xi's rise to power and his consolidation of authority. It explains how Xi emerged from a crowded field of contenders to become the top leader of China in 2012. It also describes how Xi used his personal background, political skills, and ideological vision to win the support and loyalty of the party, the military, and the public.

The anti-corruption campaign

One of the main tools that Xi used to consolidate his power was the anti-corruption campaign. He launched this campaign in 2013 with the slogan "catching tigers and flies", meaning that he would target both high-ranking officials and low-level bureaucrats who were involved in corruption. He appointed Wang Qishan, a close ally and a seasoned politician, as the head of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI), the party's anti-graft watchdog. He also created a new agency called the National Supervisory Commission (NSC) in 2018, which expanded the scope and reach of the anti-corruption campaign to all public servants and state-owned enterprises.

The anti-corruption campaign has been widely praised by many Chinese people as a necessary and effective measure to clean up the party and the government, improve governance and efficiency, and restore public trust and confidence. It has also been seen as a way for Xi to eliminate his rivals and opponents, strengthen his control over the party and the military, and enhance his personal authority and legitimacy. The campaign has ensnared hundreds of thousands of officials at various levels, including some prominent figures, such as Zhou Yongkang, Bo Xilai, Xu Caihou, Guo Boxiong, Sun Zhengcai, and Meng Hongwei.

The Belt and Road Initiative

Another major tool that Xi used to consolidate his power was the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). He announced this initiative in 2013 as a grand vision to connect China with Asia, Europe, Africa, and beyond through a network of infrastructure projects, trade agreements, cultural exchanges, and strategic partnerships. He also established a new agency called the Leading Group for Advancing the Development of One Belt One Road (LGADOBOR) in 2014, which he personally chaired. He also convened two international forums on BRI in 2017 and 2019 in Beijing, which attracted dozens of heads of state and government from around the world.

The BRI has been widely hailed by many countries as a win-win opportunity to boost economic growth, regional cooperation, and global governance. It has also been seen as a way for Xi to showcase China's rising power and influence, promote his image and vision, expand his diplomatic reach and leverage, and counterbalance the US-led order. The BRI has involved over 140 countries and regions, covering more than 60% of the world's population and 30% of the world's GDP. It has also involved hundreds of billions of dollars of investment in various sectors, such as transportation, energy, communication, agriculture, industry, tourism, education, health care, and security.

The cult of personality

A third tool that Xi used to consolidate his power was the cult of personality. He cultivated this cult by promoting his personal brand and charisma through various media platforms, such as newspapers, magazines, television shows, social media, books, movies, and songs. He also promoted his personal ideology and vision through various channels, such as speeches, reports, documents, resolutions, and slogans. He also elevated his personal status and authority through various mechanisms, such as titles, positions, awards, and honors.

The cult of personality has been widely accepted by many Chinese people as a source of pride and confidence. It has also been seen as a way for Xi to inspire loyalty and devotion, to unify and mobilize the party ```html Xi Jinping's challenges at home and abroad

The second chapter of the book examines Xi's challenges at home and abroad. It explains how Xi has faced various difficulties and dilemmas in pursuing his agenda and maintaining his power. It also describes how Xi has dealt with these challenges by adopting different strategies and tactics.

The economic slowdown

One of the main challenges that Xi has faced is the economic slowdown. China's economy has been slowing down since 2010, when it reached its peak growth rate of 10.6%. Since then, the growth rate has declined to 6.1% in 2019 and 2.3% in 2020. The slowdown has been caused by various factors, such as the structural transition from investment-led to consumption-led growth, the demographic shift from a young to an aging population, the environmental degradation from rapid industrialization and urbanization, the debt accumulation from excessive borrowing and lending, and the external pressure from trade disputes and sanctions.

The economic slowdown has posed a serious challenge for Xi, who has vowed to achieve two centenary goals: to build a moderately prosperous society by 2021, when the CPC celebrates its 100th anniversary, and to build a modern socialist country by 2049, when the PRC celebrates its 100th anniversary. To achieve these goals, Xi has adopted a dual-circulation strategy, which aims to balance domestic and international markets, promote innovation and self-reliance, and reform and open up the economy. He has also launched a new development paradigm, which emphasizes quality over quantity, green over grey, and people over profit.

The Hong Kong protests

Another major challenge that Xi has faced is the Hong Kong protests. Hong Kong is a special administrative region (SAR) of China that enjoys a high degree of autonomy under the principle of "one country, two systems". However, since 2019, Hong Kong has witnessed massive and violent protests against the local government and Beijing over various issues, such as the extradition bill, the national security law, the electoral system, the police brutality, and the human rights violations. The protests have been triggered by the perceived erosion of Hong Kong's autonomy, freedoms, and identity by Beijing's interference and influence.

The Hong Kong protests have posed a serious challenge for Xi, who has vowed to uphold national sovereignty and security, maintain social stability and order, and safeguard national dignity and interests. To deal with these protests, Xi has adopted a hardline approach, which involves imposing the national security law on Hong Kong in 2020, cracking down on pro-democracy activists and media outlets, disqualifying opposition lawmakers and candidates, arresting protesters and dissidents, and tightening Beijing's control over Hong Kong's affairs. He has also launched a patriotic education campaign in Hong Kong to foster national identity and loyalty.

The trade war with the US

A third major challenge that Xi has faced is the trade war with the US. The US is China's largest trading partner and strategic rival. Since 2018, the US under President Donald Trump has launched a trade war against China over various issues, such as trade imbalances, intellectual property rights, technology transfers, market access, and currency manipulation. The trade war has involved tariffs, sanctions, bans, and lawsuits on billions of dollars worth of goods and services from both sides. The trade war has also escalated into a broader confrontation over various domains, such as security, diplomacy, ideology, and culture.

The trade war with the US has posed a serious challenge for Xi, who has vowed to defend China's core interests, to promote China's global leadership, to advance China's economic development, and to enhance China's technological innovation. To deal with this challenge, Xi has adopted a pragmatic approach, which involves negotiating and signing the phase one trade deal with the US in 2020, diversifying and expanding China's trade partners and markets, boosting and upgrading China's domestic consumption and production, and investing and developing China's strategic industries and technologies.

The COVID-19 pandemic

A fourth major challenge that Xi has faced is the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic is a global health crisis that originated in Wuhan, China in late 2019. It has since spread to more than 200 countries and regions around the world, infecting more than 200 million people and killing more than 4 million people as of August 2021. The pandemic has caused unprecedented social and economic disruptions, lockdowns, and hardships for billions of people around the world. It has also exposed the weaknesses and failures of the global health system, governance, and cooperation.

The COVID-19 pandemic has posed a serious challenge for Xi, who has vowed to protect the lives and health of the Chinese people, to control and prevent the spread of the virus, to restore and resume the normal functioning of society and economy, and to contribute and cooperate with the international community. To deal with this challenge, Xi has adopted a comprehensive approach, which involves imposing strict measures to contain and suppress the outbreak in China, mobilizing resources and personnel to support and assist the affected areas and populations, implementing policies and plans to recover and rebuild the economy and society, and providing aid and expertise to other countries and organizations.

Xi Jinping's prospects for the future

The third chapter of the book explores Xi's prospects for the future. It explains how Xi has prepared for his next term in office and his possible succession plan. It also discusses how Xi has faced some uncertainties and risks that could affect his future and his legacy.

The 20th Party Congress in 2022

One of the main events that will shape Xi's future is the 20th Party Congress in 2022. This is a crucial meeting that will determine the leadership lineup and the policy direction of the CPC for the next five years. It is widely expected that Xi will secure his third term as the general secretary of the CPC, as he has abolished the term limits for his presidency in 2018. It is also widely speculated that Xi will appoint some loyalists and protégés to key positions in the Politburo Standing Committee (PSC), the top decision-making body of the CPC, and other important organs, such as the Central Committee (CC), the Politburo (PB), and the Secretariat.

The 20th Party Congress will also be an opportunity for Xi to showcase his achievements and vision for China's future. He will likely deliver a work report that summarizes his accomplishments in the past decade, such as building a moderately prosperous society, eradicating absolute poverty, advancing BRI, combating COVID-19, etc. He will also likely propose a new set of goals and plans for China's development in the next stage, such as achieving socialist modernization by 2035, realizing national rejuvenation by 2049, strengthening national security and defense, promoting ecological civilization, etc.

The succession issue

Another important event that will shape Xi's future is the succession issue. This is a sensitive and uncertain topic that involves who will succeed Xi as the next leader of China after his third term ends in 2027 or beyond. It is unclear whether Xi has a designated successor or a preferred candidate for this role. It is also unclear whether Xi intends to retire or stay in power beyond his third term. There are various scenarios and possibilities that could happen regarding this issue, such as:

  • Xi could follow the precedent of his predecessors, such as Deng Xiaoping, Jiang Zemin, and Hu Jintao, who all retired after their second term as general secretary and appointed a successor who was groomed and tested in advance.

  • Xi could break the precedent of his predecessors and stay in power beyond his third term as general secretary by extending or abolishing term limits for this position as well.

  • Xi could retire from his formal positions but retain his informal influence and authority by keeping some titles or roles, such as core leader, chairman of CMC, head of LGADOBOR, etc.

  • Xi could appoint a successor who is loyal and obedient to him but lacks charisma and competence, so that he can still control him from behind.

  • Xi could appoint a successor who is capable and independent but shares his vision and values, so that he can ensure continuity and stability.

The succession issue will have significant implications for China's future ```html the world. It will also affect Xi's legacy and reputation as a leader and a statesman. Therefore, it is a crucial and complex issue that requires careful and strategic planning and management.

The global backlash against China

A third event that will shape Xi's future is the global backlash against China. This is a phenomenon that involves the growing negative perceptions and reactions of the international community towards China's rise and behavior. It has been caused by various factors, such as China's assertive and aggressive actions in the South China Sea, the East China Sea, the Taiwan Strait, the border with India, etc., China's human rights violations in Xinjiang, Tibet, Hong Kong, etc., China's economic coercion and unfair practices against Australia, Canada, Sweden, etc., China's lack of transparency and accountability in handling the COVID-19 outbreak, etc.

The global backlash against China has posed a serious challenge for Xi, who has vowed to build a community of shared future for mankind, to promote a new type of international relations, to uphold multilateralism and global governance, and to foster a peaceful and harmonious world. To deal with this challenge, Xi has adopted a dual-track approach, which involves engaging and cooperating with some countries and regions that share common interests and values with China, such as Russia, Iran, Pakistan, Africa, Latin America, etc., and confronting and competing with some countries and regions that pose threats and challenges to China, such as the US, Japan, India, Europe, etc.

The potential for reform or resistance

A fourth event that will shape Xi's future is the potential for reform or resistance. This is a possibility that involves some changes or challenges to Xi's leadership and policies from within or outside the CPC. It has been driven by various factors, such as the dissatisfaction and discontent of some segments of society, such as intellectuals, entrepreneurs, activists, minorities, and citizens, with Xi's authoritarianism, corruption, inequality, censorship, and repression, the divergence and disagreement of some factions and groups within the party, such as the princelings, the Youth League, the Shanghai Gang, the liberals, and the conservatives, with Xi's centralization, purges, ideology, and vision, the emergence and influence of some forces and trends outside the party, such as civil society, social media, public opinion, and popular culture, that challenge Xi's monopoly, propaganda, control, and legitimacy.

The potential for reform or resistance has posed a serious challenge for Xi, who has vowed to maintain the leadership of the CPC over all aspects of society, to uphold the unity and stability of the party and the country, to implement the rule of law and democracy within the party framework, and to adhere to socialism with Chinese characteristics. To deal with this challenge, Xi has adopted a mixed approach, which involves accommodating and incorporating some moderate and constructive suggestions and demands from some reformers and critics within or outside the party who support his overall direction and goals but seek some adjustments and improvements in specific areas or issues; and suppressing and eliminating some radical and destructive actions and voices from some dissidents and opponents within or outside the party who oppose his overall direction and goals and seek some fundamental and drastic changes in system or structure.


Summary of the main points</h3


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