The Enormous Expansion of Chinese Influence: What Does It Portend?
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An interesting article from http://www.ucg.org/about China’s influence in Asia. This follows this post about belief in ghosts. For a free magazine subscription or to get the book shown for free clickHERE!or call 1-888-886- 8632.
Recent news reports strongly suggest that China's military, economic and political influence continues to expand aggressively both in Asia and the world at large. What are the long-term implications?
Some observers predict an Asian-centered world order—part of our ever-changing constellation of global power and influence. One renowned Indian statesman actually stated that the 21st century "will be Asia's century."
Foreign Affairs also comments: "China's extraordinary economic growth and active diplomacy are already transforming East Asia, and future decades will see even greater increases in Chinese power and influence... Will China overthrow the existing order or become a part of it? And what, if anything, can the United States do to maintain its position as China rises?" (January-February 2008, emphasis added throughout).
But before we address these questions posed by Foreign Affairs, let's take a more searching look at Chinese expansionist efforts in Asia itself.
The military implications of Chinese expansion
David Blair, diplomatic editor of The Daily Telegraph, writes: "China is building a web of influence across South Asia. Many of Beijing's immensely ambitious projects are years away from fruition, yet the repercussions of these ventures are already being felt" ("China on the Rise Once More Across the East," Telegraph.co.uk, May 20, 2009).
The Chinese are currently constructing ports in Sri Lanka, Pakistan and on a Burmese island. Recall that China gave Sri Lanka its support during the conflict with the Tamil Tigers. Ports like the one in Sri Lanka could possibly be used as Chinese naval bases in the future, raising questions as to whether China will extend its naval strength into the Indian Ocean.
Kerry Brown, an official of the Asian program of the British Chatham House think tank, states: "China is marching toward regional dominance and that brings it into conflict with India on one flank and Japan on the other. It will at some point become much more active as a military power in that region" (ibid.).
But Mr. Brown does not believe that China necessarily wants conflict. His thoughts are that the Chinese "are seeking a stable international environment within which they can continue their economic development." Nonetheless, other countries in the general region are understandably worried about China's intentions. Australia is one.
Australian reaction to China's growing military
According to Bonnie Malkin, reporting for The Daily Telegraph from Sydney, "Australia is conducting the biggest expansion of its navy since the Second World War and will spend an extra £35 billion on the armed forces over the next 20 years" ("Australia Expands Navy as Chinese Power Grows," Telegraph.co.uk, May 19, 2009).
It seems highly likely that Australia's military buildup could very well be related to Chinese expansion. "The potential instability caused by the emergence of China and India as major world powers was cited as the most pressing concern for this military build-up in particular. Australian defence planners are believed to be concerned about China's growing naval strength and America's possible retreat as a global power in the decades ahead" (ibid.).
This article goes on to discuss the doubling of Chinese submarine patrols in the past year, calling attention to the extension of China's navy into Australian territorial waters. While specifically denying any plans for any future war with China, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd stated categorically that his government would "'make absolutely no apology' for taking whatever steps were needed to guarantee the country's security."
China and Russia
China and Russia have a long history of both cooperation and conflict. According to Andrew Boyd's An Atlas of World Affairs, "In a long series of conquests, from 1500 to 1900, Russia and China took over all of northern Asia. Between them, they subdued the Mongolians and all the Turkic-language peoples, from the Azerbaijanis of the Caucasus to the Yakuts of eastern Siberia, and including the Kazakhs, Tatars, Uighurs and Uzbeks" (10th edition, 1998, p. 173).
But cooperation can turn into conflict, and the two giant empires clashed periodically, principally over territorial tensions. Fast-forwarding to the late 20th century, Sino-Russian relations grew considerably warmer.
"In 1989 the USSR withdrew its troops from Afghanistan and began to reduce its forces in Mongolia and on the Chinese frontier; this satisfied some of China's requirements for a 'normalizing' of relations. Tension was eased, and work was resumed on the completion of a [transnational] rail link...The break-up of the USSR created a buffer zone in central Asia, and Russo-Chinese relations continued to improve" (ibid., pp. 174-175).
Relations between these two geographic giants had apparently deteriorated to the point in the early 1970s that Leonid Brezhnev had reputedly asked President Richard Nixon for permission to "nuke" the People's Republic of China. Reportedly, the stern reply was a firm "No."
The Sino-Russian relationship continues to wax and wane. "In the early 1990s, massive sales of arms to China made up 2% of Russia's exports. Russia needed the money badly, but its generals grew nervous about China's new military strength" (p. 175).
China's relationships with other countries on its border also warrant observation, in terms of possible prophetic overtones for the end time. Consider India.
Chinese disputes with India
After many decades of relative stagnation, both China and India have seen remarkable growth rates over the last two decades and more. These two Asian giants alone have almost two fifths of the entire world population. Although set back somewhat by the current world recession, economically both nations could still be viewed to be on the march.
These two Asian countries have a long history of border tensions and disputed territorial claims on their 2,100-mile border. Threats of war and even a few serious skirmishes have occurred. David Blair recently reported, "The tension between China and India over their bitterly disputed border has spread to the Asian Development Bank [ADB], where Beijing has blocked almost £2 billion for its neighbour" ("China Blocks £2 Billion in Aid to India," Telegraph.co.uk, May 19, 2009). Part of the total amount has been earmarked for a northern Indian water project on territory China claims for its own.
India would need U.S. support if it ever hopes to be able to persuade the Chinese to relent and ask the ADB to release the funds. Such events shift relations between nations. But in spite of serious periodic differences between these three countries, could China, Russia and India come together at the time of the end?
Certainly in today's world, America appears to be on the wane and China and Asia on the ascent. Why is the United States suffering so many setbacks in the world? Are there both historic and prophetic reasons?
A prophetic picture of the time of the end
Bible prophecies in the book of Revelation and the book of Daniel dovetail together to give us an intriguing picture of events at the time of the end.
Daniel 11:40And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over.
See All... mentions these occurrences "at the time of end" and the fact that the king of the North (identified prophetically as the charismatic leader of a Central European combine of nations), while entering the Holy Land, attacks the king of the South (probably the leader of an Arab-Islamic confederation). Then verse 44 tells us of "news from the east" that will trouble this king of the North.
Revelation 9:13-16  And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God,
 Saying to the sixth angel which had the trumpet, Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates.
 And the four angels were loosed, which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men.
 And the number of the army of the horsemen were two hundred thousand thousand: and I heard the number of them.
See All..., also describing end-time events, describes an eastern army 200-million strong that unleashes great devastation, killing a third of mankind. Several chapters later, in Revelation 16:12And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared.
See All..., we read of "the kings [leaders] from the east" crossing the Euphrates River.
It would appear that one of these forces is an Islamic counterattack to the king of the North entering the Holy Land. The other, it appears, is likely from further east, from China, India and other Asian nations that lie to the east of the Holy Land. Regardless of which is which, demonic forces will influence "the kings of the earth" to gather together at Armageddon for that final battle against Jesus Christ (Revelation 16:14For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.
In effect this will be the final World War. The returning Jesus Christ will be the undisputed winner of truly "the mother of all battles." It will constitute mankind's final rebellion against his Creator during this age of man. But the outcome has already been determined. "The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!" (Revelation 11:15And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
To learn more
This article can only briefly summarize the significance of these end-time events. Our free booklet You Can Understand Bible Prophecy will give you a basic overview of all the major events accompanying the time of the end and even well on beyond. A companion booklet titled Are We Living in the Time of the End? highlights the telltale signs that signal that we are indeed approaching the close of an age.
Another publication, The Book of Revelation Unveiled , shows how to truly comprehend the message of that mystery book. The booklet The Middle East in Bible Prophecy brings a needed perspective of historic events such as the four empires revealed in the book of Daniel and the rise and fall of ancient Israel.
Since no power identifiable as the United States is found depicted in the events described in the book of Revelation, this fact strongly indicates that some combination of major factors leads to America's prophesied collapse before the very final events preceding Christ's return. To learn more about this whole story, historic and prophetic, read the booklet The United States and Britain in Bible Prophecy . WNP