April 15th 2020
First act: World War II.
One of the worst mistakes of the free world is to believe that World War II ended in 1945, when only one of the two contenders that started the war was militarily defeated.
On September 1st, 1939, National Socialist Germany invaded Poland. On September 17th, it was joined by the international socialist Russia. It began a conflict that still persists to this day and has gone through three very different phases.
The first was the open military confrontation, which the United States joined when Japan made the mistake of precipitating the embedding of its Asian expansion in the European war scenario. An expansion that began in 1931 with the invasion of Manchuria and, later, in 1937, that of China. Another miscalculation, in this case of Germany, which by rushing in its search for oil and Russian lands forced its ally to join with the allies following the principle of “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”.
Second act: Cold War.
The next phase of World War II began on the very day that Germany was defeated. National Socialism fell by force of arms, but International Socialism did not. However, the general perception was that both sides were in a new scenario and not in a continuation by other means and modes of warfare that they believed they had left behind.
The defeat of the Soviet Union illuminated China, which learned the lesson that one cannot defeat the free world without using its most powerful weapon: capitalism, free initiative and competition. And so, after the death of Mao Zedong, the true hero of contemporary China, Den Xiaoping, began on December 18, 1978 the path that would allow the communist regime to survive and, as is happening now, to aspire to the final victory of the conflict begun in 1939.
Third act: Weichkrieg.
The Green March was the first and successful rehearsal of a new way of continuing the war by other means than open military confrontation. A low intensity war. Moreover, without a confrontational format. A loose war. A Weichkrieg completely different from Blitzkrieg but with the same devastating results.
It was “unarmed civilian volunteers” who forced Spain to defeat itself and deliver Western Sahara to Morocco without a single shot being fired. And without that fact causing any kind of underground confrontation between the two blocks, as it used to happen in the different Cold War scenarios.
In this phase of the war, China mobilizes all the resources and means at its disposal, along with the invaluable help of an unsuspected ally: the enemy’s belief that it is not immersed in a war, much less that it should be framed in the conflict that began in 1939. And it uses the same strategy that the allies followed to achieve the end of the Soviet Union, after which Russia took the form of a failed consolidated state. The most effective way to defeat the West militarily is not by force of arms, but by force of economy.
To leave wounded, not dead. The minimum attack with the maximum damage. The “butterfly effect” propagated in the ocean of chaos. But how does the effectiveness of that minimal attack depend? How does one suddenly and disproportionately amplify the flapping of a butterfly in Wuhan to create a storm in New York?
The civilians who occupied Western Sahara did so armed with Spain’s social weakness. A conjunctural weakness, due to Franco’s death and the dark questions about the nation’s future, which becomes consubstantial in the free world because power in representative liberal democracies depends on public opinion which, in turn, can give the political opposition an unexpected advantage in reaching power.
Public opinion, partisan struggle, inability to respond to the attack
This high dependence on easily manipulated public opinion is the cause of another of the disadvantages of the free world: the inability to modulate a graduated and variable response to a threat. The “defensive button” of Europeanized societies is “all or nothing”. One responds with full force and explicitly, or not at all, except through formal statements or shadow diplomacy, as if we were still in a cold war scenario.
China acts differently.
From November 17, 2019, when the first infected person appeared, according to information provided by the South China Morning Post, until December 31, when the Chinese authorities communicated to the WHO the appearance of cases of a “new pneumonia”, more than forty days passed. The day before, on December 30th, the news unintentionally spread by Dr. Li Wenliang about a still unknown strain of a SARS-like virus, jumped to the public opinion. On January 5, 2020, the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission reported the first case, indicating that it had been diagnosed on December 12. And finally, on January 23rd, Wuhan’s confinement was decreed, one day before the end of the Chinese year, when millions of people had already left the city, 42 days after the first official case was diagnosed and more than two weeks after the epidemic was officially reported. Two key weeks for the virus to spread throughout China and abroad.
In Wuhan there is a microbiology laboratory that works with coronavirus of the same characteristics as the one that spread from that same city to the whole world. COVID-19 is from the same family as a coronavirus found in bats that the Wuhan Institute of Microbiology had captured in 2003 and whose samples it has been keeping since 2013. General Chen Wei, the people’s army’s top expert in biological warfare, was sent to Wuhan at the end of January.
Whether the origin of the epidemic is a natural and fortuitous cause, helped or not by a “push”, or artificial due to a mistake or an intentional act, the importance of the spread of COVID-19 does not lie in its origin but in how it has been handled by the Chinese authorities, how other countries have reacted and in its political and economic consequences.
We can face a problem by faithfully following a pre-established script, which establishes the laws that govern any problem and the formulas to obtain the best results no matter what the concrete terms of that problem are. This is what military strategy and tactics manuals do. The premise of this mode of action focuses on the aspects that different cases have in common, so that the possible responses are simplified to the extent that all of them are given for a typical event. Another way of dealing with the problems is to focus on discovering which are the key laws or particularities that govern each specific case, adapting tactics to the weaknesses/difficulties of each situation and discovering the opportunities that are hidden in those peculiarities that the general rules, the pre-established logic, disregard. This way of facing the problems is based on the situational, adaptive intelligence, which analyzes each concrete case in search not to draw a complex plan but a minimum action that obtains the maximum profitability. This is what China has done and what the free world has not yet done. The battle of Wuhan did not take place there and at the beginning of the contagion. Nor does it matter if it was a fortuitous or intentional act. The battle of Wuhan is happening now. And it is not an act of biological warfare, but an economic one. Because the great military effect of this pandemic lies in the massive destruction of the economy of the societies of the free world. And in something more concrete and effective.
The US, under the presidency of Donald Trump, a businessman caught up in the ruses of economic competition, responded to China’s strategy of using capitalism and free competition to protect itself from an end like that which ended the Soviet Union, by a simple act that has unleashed much more serious consequences in the Asian giant than it has transcended public opinion. The game of mixing capitalism and communism is based on a razor’s edge that depends on constant economic growth to prevent an already “westernized” population in terms of living standards from feeling the need to also westernize in political terms by demanding a representative liberal democracy. The urgency of communist government is not determined by the need to stop the economic decline which is not at all and will not be in itself serious enough to stop the path to world hegemony. That urgency is determined by the fact that a slowdown in GDP growth or even a recession, even a slight one, could unleash enough social unrest to create a butterfly effect of political contestation that would grow into a massive demand for greater freedom. That is China’s weakness, derived directly from its successful model of communist capitalism. That the gap in social discontent, once it has tasted the honey of progress, can only be contained by high and constant economic growth.
The best act of war in terms of situational intelligence, escaping for the first time the all-or-nothing button model and following an unconventional, though explicit, strategy of confrontation, has found in the worldwide spread of the COVID-19, intentional or fortuitous, the situation that allows China to respond to the “attack” of the tariffs in terms of artificial intelligence, taking advantage of the opportunities and exploiting the weaknesses of the enemy. And, moreover, without doing so explicitly.
Unarmed civilian volunteers”, the coronaviruses, have invaded enemy territory to destroy its economy enough to generate a relative advantage for the inexplicably little-damaged economy of the country where the epidemic originated and to create in the enemy camp a chaos where the butterfly flutter is amplified fast enough for the allies, who are not accustomed to using situational intelligence, respond like headless chickens by collapsing their health systems, causing many more deaths than should have occurred and generating economic self-destruction unprecedented for over 70 years.
The economic crisis will be much greater than it should be and, moreover, will damage more intensely the main enemies of international socialist China. But there is a side effect that could, in the medium and long term, be more harmful than the economic crisis. A millenarianist inertia is being generated that amplifies without any real need the effect of the pandemic or, more precisely, of the overreactions to it, in the sense of causing a radical change in our way of life. A kind of prophecy that tends to be self-fulfilling and that goes in the direction of limiting freedoms, reproducing at the world level the Chinese model of communist capitalism.
Where there is greater economic destruction there will be a greater risk of falling into a liberticidal dynamic wrapped in the rhetoric of security, in this case health. Then, social and political change will feed on itself by deepening the violation of freedom as happens in all totalitarian processes. And where is greater economic destruction accompanied by greater mortality taking place? Where the response to the pandemic consists of an overreaction that leads to the implementation of a confinement of the population as a fundamental strategy on which all others revolve. Exactly as was the case in the Middle Ages. And the most surprising thing is that these medieval responses, associated with chaos, superstition (fake news), incompetence and manipulation of political power, occur first and foremost in developed countries: Italy and Spain. They go from the initial confidence fostered by the diffuse information coming from China to a nationwide replica of the response-sample designed by the communist authorities to serve as an example abroad. But China has not carried out the nationwide isolation and confinement, even though the millions of people who left Hubei during the New Year’s exodus spread the infection throughout the country. Countries with a medieval response and, others, with an intelligent and proportionate response to the real health danger: a very low mortality.
Wrapped up in the daze caused by the chaotic scenario, we have lost sight of the immediate. Attentive to the dreams produced by the morbid exaltation of the pandemic, which in reality of our hysterical overreaction to it, speaking of the great changes that have been initiated, of the tremendous economic recession, etc., we have lost sight of the current battlefield. It is not only a selective destruction of the economies of the countries with the greatest social weakness (public opinion and political opposition), nor that supposed global and almost apocalyptic change that we are building exactly as the Europeans did in the year 1000, all of this for the benefit of those who keep a cool head and, surprisingly, the epidemic under control, but the most important card for winning the battle of Wuhan and, with it, The unfinished Second World War that China is playing is that of, having taken the US by surprise by minimizing the capacity for contagion and the effectiveness of the clinical picture to collapse the health system, with the consequent social alarm, the destruction of the business fabric and its sequel of unemployment could seriously undermine the possibilities of a re-election of the president who has touched the weakest fiber of the Asian giant by playing the trump card of tariffs.
The response of the allies, accustomed to using manual and non-situational intelligence and to modulating the response by means of an all-or-nothing button (filmic mythology always presents that dramatic moment of push and pull or no push and do nothing), is, for now, doing nothing. To contemplate the destruction that the growing butterfly effect in the chaos of its social weakness (let us never forget: manipulated public opinion and opposition as an internal enemy allied with the external one) without doing absolutely nothing is the response that the international socialist bloc is looking for. But the capacity to react, in addition to that weakness intrinsic to representative liberal democracies, is limited by another factor that has not been given the importance it deserves because it does not want to see what it is really like.
The big problem the free world is facing, besides its social weakness, is Germany. All the modulated actions, conventional or not and fast that the allies could take, go through causing enough economic damage to China to trigger a process of political change in the country or the signing of an armistice with conditions equivalent to a surrender. Germany is a country that is poor in natural resources but rich in innovation and technological development for which the export of industrial products is vital. It is therefore essential to maintain access to these expansion territories, among which China is pre-eminent. Any strategy to halt China’s economic and technological development entails a reduction in its own development.
What if Germany had not accepted defeat and had not fully incorporated itself into the free world? What if the EU were, in practice, a Fourth Reich with its Vichy France? It would be understood, then, why the strategy of the US (and of the Anglo-Saxon world in general) is to destroy this EU. The confrontation visualized in the Ukrainian question would make sense between Germany, protecting its territory of expansion, Russia, to guarantee its energy supply, and the US, trying to cut off the Russian energy supply (the Second Unfinished World War) and the expansion of the German economic people, the economic lebensraum, through the same territories in the east as 80 years ago, and with the same weak alliance with an unprofiled, anonymous Russia, held together by the ancestral caciquism dressed in white, red or Putin.
Germany is the cradle of an ideological hybrid under which the foundations of the old socialism are hidden: social democracy. Is there anything more revealing than the defense of Germany’s national interests in each of the community decisions? Is that a covert nationalism like social democracy is a covert, clandestine, fifth columnist socialism? And does not that nationalism and socialism compose a mode of survival of the old spirit in the form of a national social democracy? Hiding the past to protect it. To protect only the condemnation of the opprobrious holocaust, even with prison for the deniers, to hide from history and succeed in reversing it.
Let no one forget that Germany, after the defeat of 1945, suffered an armistice of conditions even tougher than those of 1918: it was completely razed to the ground. And that is more difficult to forget than the holocaust or the military defeat itself.
The beaches of Normandy
Even with all these disadvantages, China, thanks to the success of its intelligent management of the crisis, has given the free world the best (perhaps the last) opportunity to apply all its power to conjure up the immense threat hanging over the world, including the Chinese people: that a communist dictatorship will take over the world’s technological, military and economic superiority. After losing the battle of Wuhan, a new and decisive battle must be presented by surprise with three main objectives: to isolate China. To subject it to the inertia of its history. To make it close in on itself again. Something for which they have an intense propensity. To offer alternative and reciprocal economic lebensraum to Germany. And to leave Russia alone with China.
To initiate a great economic and technological alliance in unison with the collective emotionality unleashed by the very reaction to the pandemic by free societies. To use the current of opinion ready to accept the changes that are proposed, however radical they may be, to conjure up the deadly dangers of the coronavirus. Focusing on the most important in the medium and long term and which we can highlight with a dramatic example from all points of view: Everyone buys protection from China against the virus originated and exported by China.
Using the social process that has paralyzed the economy of Western countries to spread the need to create an open protectionism only for the allies. Recover production capacity, relocate companies and jobs. An economic lebensraum open to all the allies. A new alliance that establishes a space in which industrial relocation is rewarded in order to prevent the battle of Wuhan from becoming the first act of a successful economic blitzkrieg sustained today in a pandemic and, tomorrow, in any other incident that overpopulation, the tremendous technological development and globalization allow to turn the flapping of a butterfly into a hurricane. A space capable of creating the conditions so that the Chinese people can join a free world where multilateralism does not conceal the new unilateralism of international socialism fed by the worst capitalism.