Chinese Media Touts Need for 'De-Americanized' World Amid Washington Shutdown

2:08 AM PST 10/16/2013 by Clifford Coonan

The official state news agency launches a blistering editorial broadside against the Western democratic system as Beijing fears for its $1.3 trillion in holdings of U.S. debt.

China's official state news agency, Xinhua, has launched a fierce editorial broadside against the United States, saying Washington's current fiscal woes show the need for "a de-Americanized world."

"As U.S. politicians of both political parties are still shuffling back and forth between the White House and the Capitol Hill without striking a viable deal to bring normality to the body politic they brag about, it is perhaps a good time for the befuddled world to start considering building a de-Americanized world," ran the op-ed, which was carried in English, but widely reported in the Chinese-language media.

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China is run with an iron fist by the Communist Party, and dissent is not tolerated, and official Chinese official media have been quick to use the U.S. shutdown as evidence of the shortcomings of the democratic system.

At the same time, some of the spiky commentary comes out of China's fears that its debt holdings in American government bonds could be under threat because of the crisis on Capitol Hill.

"Instead of honoring its duties as a responsible leading power, a self-serving Washington has abused its superpower status and introduced even more chaos into the world by shifting financial risks overseas, instigating regional tensions amid territorial disputes and fighting unwarranted wars under the cover of outright lies," said the commentary.

The op-ed ran in Sunday's (Oct. 13) Global Times newspaper, which is the official organ of the ruling Chinese Communist Party. The Global Times later reported on the follow-up to the article, saying that U.S. media were guessing as to the real intention of the article and saying that the piece had gotten Washington worried.

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Beijing is the largest overseas holder of U.S. government debt and has issued many warnings about the danger of a U.S. default. The Treasury reckons China holds some $1 trillion in treasuries, and it also has additional U.S. agency debt.

Premier Li Keqiang told Secretary of State John Kerry last week (Oct. 10) that Beijing was "highly concerned" about Washington’s debt ceiling problem and its failure to resolve its debt crisis.

"The U.S. government has gone to all lengths to appear before the world as the one that claims the moral high ground, yet covertly does things that are as audacious as torturing prisoners of war, slaying civilians in drone attacks and spying on world leaders," it said.

"Under what is known as the Pax-Americana, we fail to see a world where the United States is helping to defuse violence and conflicts, reduce poor and displaced population and bring about real, lasting peace."

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