The West Needs To Stop Believing China Can Reform Itself

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One of the West’s most significant foreign policy blunders was its blind faith that economic engagements with China would empower moderate Communist party members to launch political reforms. Such wishful thinking, unfortunately, is not the only China illusion the West has fallen for, according to Frank Dikotter’s new book “China After Mao: The Rise of a Superpower.”

Dikotter, as the chair professor of humanities at the University of Hong Kong since 2006, has a front-row seat from which he can observe Chinese history. He’s also traveled to China many times and sifted through thousands of municipal and provincial government archives and primary source materials. All of this research enabled him to author the award-winning “People’s Trilogy,” a series of books that document the Chinese Communist Party’s rise to power and how its ideology and policies inflicted unimaginable pain on the Chinese …

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