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China's Latest White Paper for a 'Global Community of Shared Future': Another Sugar-Coated Saber

The white paper is all about what China is not. But if China truly embraces this vision instead of hiding its dirty hands behind it, the world could have peace.



China's white paper on “A Global Community of Shared Future” issued on September 26, 2023.

China under the CCP regime is perhaps among the countries who had issued the largest number of white papers. Normally, a government issues a white paper when it has something important policy matters to declare or announce to its people or to the international community. But a nation's policy and its fundamental values are already declared in its constitution. Therefore, the issuance of white papers at frequent intervals and on a regular basis is not common practice. 

On September 26, the State Council of Information Office of the People's Republic of China issued another white paper "A Global Community of Shared Future: China's Proposals and Actions." It calls for a peaceful and equitable world. This white paper comes as a relief, however pretentious. 

Currently, the world is limping back to normal after more than three years of China's COVID-19 pandemonium.  In addition, the Russia-Ukraine war is still ongoing. Also, the situations in the Southeast China Sea and the Indo-Tibet borders remain volatile. Therefore, it is refreshing to see China speaking peace and seeking the cooperation of the international community to build a global community of shared future.

Dr Tsewang Gyalpo Arya, the author of this report.

Xi Jinping's So-Called 'Vision'

One could only wish that what China has said in the paper is true. One wonders if the CCP leadership is really aware of the contents of the paper or if it believes in the concept of a "global community of shared future." If so, the international community has every good reason to hope for peace, reconciliation, and stability in the days ahead.

Going through the first paragraph of its preface, one can't help wondering whether it is a Chinese white paper or an extract from the teachings of His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet. But one is suddenly awakened from such elation with a big jolt in the next paragraph. It says, "Ten years ago President Xi Jinping propounded the idea of building a global community of shared future, answering a question raised by the world, by history, and by the times: 'Where is humanity headed?'"

China military
President Xi Jinping attends the opening ceremony of the National People's Congress of China on March 5, 2023. (© Xinhua via Kyodo )

Does China Believe Its Own Words?

The preface goes on to explain how Xi Jinping's "five-point proposal" in 2015 and "five goals" in 2017 further enriched the depth and scope of the vision for the global community of a shared future. This reminds us of His Holiness the Dalai Lama's five-point peace proposal in 1987 and his four commitments in his life. Furthermore, the stated purpose of the white paper is "to introduce the theoretical base, practice, and development of a global community of shared value."

If China is really serious about this white paper and its professed vision, the world is headed to a great time of peace, stability, and understanding. And the Chinese leadership could be on its way to receiving the next Nobel Peace Prize. 

Portraying China Like a Lamb

The first chapter of the white paper is titled "Humanity at a Crossroads." It talks of interdependence, the inevitability of globalization, and the collective future of humanity. It preaches the CCP's Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence and the advancement of democracy. The narrations are very positive, revealing, and pacifying: "In the age of globalization, all countries are interdependent and interconnected." 

Whatever the real intention, the author of the paper has done a very fine job of portraying a very positive picture of China — making a lamb out of a fiery dragon! Those who are not aware of the CCP's sinful past are bound to take the paper at face value and be taken for a ride by the narrative.

'Rather than Invasion and Expansion'

But for those who know China, a quick analysis of the paper reveals China's real intention and the contradictory nature of the statements in the white paper. For example, "We pursue development and revitalization through our own efforts, rather than invasion and expansion. And everything we do is for the purpose of providing a better life for our people."  

Here, China is trying to bury the crimes and sins it has committed. These include the brutal occupation of Tibet, East Turkistan, and Southern Mongolia, and the genocide still going on in those regions. And what does China have to say about the 1962 war with India and the continued border intrusions and skirmishes along India's borders? Moreover, what is China doing in the Southeast China Sea by occupying islands and building military bases? And what about the military contingents around Taiwan and the constant threat of occupation


Are these not invasions and expansions, and how are they providing a better life for the people? The Chinese public would never want a better life at the cost of unjustified and illegal invasion and expansion.

Chinese warship Luyang III sails near and crosses in front of the US destroyer USS Chung-Hoon in the Taiwan Strait on June 3, 2023. (US Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Andre T Richard/Handout via REUTERS)

What About Hong Kong and Taiwan?

Chapter two of the paper is titled "An Answer to the Call of the Time and a Blueprint for the Future." It says, "To build a global community of shared future is to pursue openness, inclusiveness, mutual benefit, equity and justice." If China is really sincere about what it is saying, it should first resolve the issues related to the occupied territories of Tibet, Manchuria, East Turkistan, and Southern Mongolia. It needs to do this before talking about "a global community of shared future." Do the people of the occupied regions enjoy openness, inclusiveness, mutual benefit, equity, and justice? Some reports are already describing Tibet as a police state.

The white paper also says "The goal is not to replace one system or civilization with another." But what China has done in the occupied regions and what it is doing in Hong Kong and Taiwan is exactly the opposite. Despite the Chinese constitution, the CCP regime holds a policy of assimilation and Han chauvinism to sinicize the culture and religions of the occupied territories. 

The recent Order No 19 of the State Administration for Religious Affairs justifies the sinicization of all religions. It also makes it mandatory for all to adopt Xi Jinping's ideology of socialism and Chinese characteristics in their religious teachings. Hong Kong was, and Taiwan is, a thriving democratic region with freedom and peace. But what China has done in Hong Kong and what it is planning to do in Taiwan are evident for all to see. 

Hong Kong
Riot police officers walk as anti-national security law protesters march during the anniversary of Hong Kong's handover to China from Britain, in Hong Kong, China July 1, 2020. (©REUTERS/Tyrone Siu)

China Values Democracy?

"To build a global community of shared future, countries should advance democracy in international relations to make sure that the future of the world is determined by all," China's white paper says.

But before proposing democracy for a global community, China should first democratize mainland China and restore democracy in Hong Kong. It should follow Taiwan and the Central Tibetan Administration in exile by restoring the power to the people and ending the dictatorship of the one party, the CCP regime.

Seeking Justice

The white paper preaches, "The world needs justice, not hegemonism. We should build a world of lasting peace through dialogue and consultation." If it believes this, China must first do justice to the thousands of young Chinese massacred at Tiananmen Square in 1989 and the slaughter of Falun Gong practitioners in the mainland. 

Talking about hegemonism, it should first withdraw from the occupied territories and stop border intrusions in the neighboring states of India, Bhutan, and Nepal. It should stop the escalation of tension and military build-ups in the Southeast China Sea. If dialogue and consultation are important, China should start a dialogue with the representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and the Tibetan Administration to resolve the Tibet issue.

Sugary Words

One can't help but marvel at the audacity of the claims China makes in this white paper:

"For a long time in the past, China was one of the most powerful countries in the world, but it does not have any record of colonization or aggression against other countries. China opposes all forms of hegemonism and power politics and does not interfere in the internal affairs of other countries. It will never seek hegemony or engage in expansion."

China's white paper "National Defense in the New Era" issued in 2019 has the same sugar-coated dovish wording. By repeatedly saying the same thing, China is trying to cover its dark past of colonization and aggression. It is also trying to cover up its military agenda along India and Bhutan's borders and the Southeast China Sea. 

How Does China Uphold the UN Charter?

"The Chinese nation champions universal benevolence, holding that the virtuous are never left to stand alone," says the latest white paper. Yet, despite the international community's respect and conferment of the Nobel Peace Prize to HH the Dalai Lama, the CCP leadership has always tried to malign and smear the Dalai Lama's name and isolate him. Chinese interference in neighboring countries' internal affairs to undermine HH the Dalai Lama's visits and teachings is an open secret. 


In the fourth chapter, it says, "China firmly upholds the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, as well as the authority and status of the United Nations." If so, then China should implement the United Nations General Assembly resolutions on Tibet in 1959, 1961, 1965, and 1991. The world well knows how China flaunts the UN laws and system to impose its will and gets away with impunity.  

His Holiness the Dalai Lama at his residence in Dharamsala, India on March 26, 2023. (©The Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama by Tenzin Jamphel)

'Contributions' Through the Belt and Road Initiative

In the last chapter, "China's Action and Contribution," the paper glorifies China's contribution through the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) around the world. But the world is aware of how China tried to invade, occupy, bully, and interfere in the internal matters of the countries caught in its debt traps through these insidious BRI overtures.

What China's BRI has truly delivered and contributed is recorded for all to see in the International Republican Institute's (IRI) 2019 report "Chinese Malign Influence and the Corrosion of Democracy."

Xi Should Meet HH Dalai Lama

Lastly, the latest white paper is all about what China is not. It is how China wants the world to think of China. However, the vision "global community of shared future" is admirable. If only China would come openly and embrace this noble vision instead of trying to hide its dirty hands behind it, the world would have a great future of peace and prosperity. 

The vision reminds us of HH the Dalai Lama's small booklet The Global Community and the Need for Universal Responsibility published in 1992. Although the CCP rejects the Dalai Lama and his influence, in its white paper it can't help admiring his teachings and thoughts. 

To sum up, with all sarcasm aside, the white paper doles out good preachings. It talks about peaceful coexistence, non-aggression, interdependence, resolving differences through dialog, humanity as one family, and the earth as one home. These are exactly what HH the Dalai Lama has been advocating all his life. Therefore, it is important and natural that Chinese President Xi Jinping meet HH the Dalai Lama to expedite the realization of this noble vision of a "global community of a shared future."


Author: Dr Tsewang Gyalpo Arya

Dr Arya Tsewang Gyalpo is the former Secretary of the Department of Information and International Relations (DIIR) and former Director of the Tibet Policy Institute (TPI). He is currently the Representative of the Liaison Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama for Japan and East Asia. The view expressed above is the author's own.

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