Communist China Seeks to Undermine US on Path to Global Hegemony: Intelligence Director

By Andrew Thornebrooke, EPOCH TIMES   4.5.23

Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines speaks during a hearing with the Senate Armed Services Committee in Washington on May 4, 2023. (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON—China’s communist rulership believes that it must undermine and displace the United States in order to thrive, according to the nation’s top intelligence official.

The regime is actively working to expand its authoritarian model of governance across the globe and to supplant U.S. interests in Asia specifically, said Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines.

“[China] is increasingly challenging the United States economically, technologically, politically, militarily, and from an intelligence standpoint around the world,” Haines said during a May 4 hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee.

“We assess that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) under President Xi Jinping will continue efforts over the next year to achieve Xi’s vision of making China the preeminent power in east Asia, and a major power on the world stage.”

To that end, Haines said the CCP is engaged in “efforts to undermine global norms, principles, and mechanisms that promote and underpin translation cooperation,” and considers U.S. decline a necessary objective to ensure its own rise.

“What is perhaps most concerning is that the CCP is increasingly convinced that it can only fulfill Xi’s vision at the expense of U.S. power and influence, and through tools of coercion,” Haines said.

“Perceiving the United States as a threat, the [CCP] seeks to undercut U.S. influence, and is looking to portray the United States as the root of global problems.”

One way that the regime is going about doing just that, Haines said, is by using U.S. actions abroad to justify aggression by disguising pre-planned actions as organic reactions to the United States.

One example of this, Haines said, was the regime’s over-the-top military drills around Taiwan following a brief talk between House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen. While the regime claimed such actions were a response to U.S. actions, the aggressive exercises had in fact been planned for months.

“China seeks to divide us from our allies and partners, and then frame U.S. actions as provocations that provide the basis for [pre-]planned aggression, which they then claim are just responses,” she said.

This “increasingly aggressive approach,” Haines said, is designed to help the regime “to reshape global governance in line with Xi’s preferences” and further solidify the CCP’s “monopoly of power in China.”

CCP ‘Seeks to Win Without Fighting’

If the United States does not do more to seriously counter the CCP in this growing strategic competition, said Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Jack Reed (D-R.I.), it could lose the battle with China without ever being drawn into a military conflict.

That’s because the CCP “seeks to win without fighting,” Reed said, and its massive military development is focused on “countering our advantages” to deter the United States from ever going toe-to-toe with the regime.

Citing the Pentagon’s Joint Concept for Competing (pdf), Reed said that the United States was at real risk of losing invaluable influence and resources abroad while preparing for a war that might never happen.

“[The Joint Concept says] if we do not adapt our approach to compete more effectively, the United States risks ceding strategic influence, advantage, and leverage, while preparing for a war that never occurs,” Reed said. “Indeed, the document warns that the U.S. could lose without fighting.”

The Pentagon’s document, released this past February, aims to focus the Pentagon’s efforts to actively advance American national interests and strategic objectives rather than just denying its adversaries access to the same.

The document says that China’s military buildup is explicitly designed to counter the U.S. military, not to actually fight, but to scare the United States away from fighting while China wins other, non-military victories abroad.

“[China] intends to deter U.S. intervention militarily and present the United States with a fait accompli that compels the United States to accept a strategic outcome that results in a [Chinese] regional sphere of influence and an international system more favorable to [Chinese] national interests and authoritarian preferences,” the document says.

To that end, Reed said that the United States’ strategic competition with the CCP is taking place in every region of the world, and affects all instruments of national power.

“For several decades, the [Chinese military] has studied the United States’ way of war, and focused its efforts on countering our advantages,” Reed said.

“This competition is occurring across every field of national power. Military, economic, political, technological, and more, and across every region of the world.”

May 5, 2023 | Comments »

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