CapriChina’s stock market crash, everyone now seems to agree, mirrors a slowing economy with repercussions not only in the world’s economy but also in China’s stability. Because economic growth has grown in tandem with increased military power, the question arises: does a major slowdown make China more or less likely to assert itself abroad, a project that has accelerated in recent years?

Does this mean we can’t get Taiwan back?

China’s increased military spending, development of deep water naval power and effort to control, by force, routes into the China Seas reflect the country’s unshakable conviction that US-designed, post-World War II security scaffolding is collapsing. Ending the US military guardianship of the Western Pacific is chief among Beijing’s aspirations.

Primary clients in the US’s Pacific zone of influence are Taiwan, which China wants back and sees the Washington as standing in its way, and Japan, the great historical rival which China considers in irreversible decline.

Competing with, or even displacing, the US militarily in turn runs parallel to the Chinese leadership’s other dearly held geopolitical belief: US economic trade and development influence, which reached a zenith in the roaring 90s of globalization, must come to an end. Hence, China’s challenges to US-led multinational finance represented by creation of its own development bank, the Asian Infrastructure Development Bank, as well as bilateral foreign aid programs.

It’s possible that a deep recession will delay China’s hopes of competing on the world stage of high finance. Just how many loans can China, which is bucking up its own stock markets with hundreds of billions of yuan, hand out to shaky clients?

Its military policy, on the other hand, will continue apace.

For Guardian, is the sky falling?

Good look at US-China rivalry .

You can’t believe China’s official economic stats.

Foreign Policy doesn’t like China’s development bank.

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