As Beijing and Washington move gingerly toward restoring high-level exchanges, Xi Jinping is stepping up his effort to gird China for conflict, reports The Wall Street Journal. Since late last month, the Chinese leader has twice urged the nation to prepare for what he described as extreme scenarios or conditions—using a phraseology implying the possibilities of escalating tensions as the competition between the US and China intensifies.
At a top-level meeting focused on national security on May 30, the Chinese leader said, “We must be prepared for worst-case and extreme scenarios, and be ready to withstand the major test of high winds, choppy waters and even dangerous storms.”
A week later, Xi extended that concept to the economic arena. While inspecting an industrial park in Inner Mongolia, Xi said efforts to build up the domestic market are aimed at “ensuring normal operation of the national economy under extreme circumstances.”