The military take on president Hu Jintao by testing their J-20 stealth fighter just days before he leave for the US, writes John Pomfret in the Washington Post. Wrong, argues Shaun Rein in CNBC.
The opposite is true. President Hu is undoubtedly quite in control of China and displayed his power to Gates by employing a plausible deniability ploy.
A far more likely scenario than Pomfret’s musings is that Hu is playing a cagey game. By hinting that the People’s Liberation Army made the decision without civilian knowledge, Hu is showing he is reasonable and not warlike but the test underscores China will no longer be bullied by America. Hu’s ploy of plausible deniability is in fact a common negotiating technique by the Chinese and it is surprising that Pomfret and other pundits missed that.
Shaun Rein is a speaker at the China Speakers Bureau. Do you need him at your meeting or conference? Do get in touch.