Rishi Sunak’s Bali Fiasco and Then His Bland Banquet Babble

There will be more confrontations, more divisions, more effort at ‘divide and rule’ strong arming both small and big nations at any possible geopolitical corner by the British.

It seems to be yet unknown whether Rishi Sunak has yet fully recovered from the complete humiliation by Xi Jinping at the Bali summit in that Xi simply declined to have an official meeting with Sunak, No 10 has given an impromptu explanation of sorts that Xi ‘s schedule was rather hectic but it was plain obvious that Xi in fact had ample room in his schedule for everybody else but Rishi Sunak.

One wonders what sort of formal explanation the Chinese officials gave as an excuse or they simply deservedly ignored Sunak and his entourage?

Fast forward and back to London now, Rishi Sunak in his first official speech (on 28th November 2022) announced the end of the Golden Era in the relations between the two countries. Truth be told, Rishi Sunak was not precise as to which Golden Era he did in essence had in mind

Was it the Age of the Opium Wars and the century-long heartfelt Chinese humiliation by any chance, which the Chinese will never forget regardless of the fact that China may have recovered from it ever since or perhaps not. The meeting of Sunak and Xi was supposed to be the first encounter at this high level between a Chinese leader and a British leader (though the Brits seem to be turfing out theirs at the speed of light). Though there seems to be a UK’s true intention to establish and maintain ever closer ties with China. At the same time, along the lines of the typical British ‘constructive cynicism’ Rishi Sunak indicated that China is a systemic and a long-term challenge in that China is a country with fundamentally different values from ‘the British ones’, the intention of which is to reshape international world order (it seems that only No 10 and Washington DC with its Bundestag lapdogs are entitled to do so and it is not ‘democracy’ if anybody else were strong enough to do that). Reuters tends to think that Sunak had a more nuanced approach than that of his ephemeral predecessor Liz Truss. Liz Truss during her short-lived premiership warned that China had to ‘play by the rules’ ( Remind me, please, when China did not play by the rules and who exactly sets these rules? What rules particularly was that wretched Liz Truss referring to?

All this did not bode well for a promising and fruitful meeting so China decided to opt out gently and with style.

After the Bali fiasco of massive proportions on the part of Rishi Sunak, announcing his supposedly brilliant talk the next Monday, the Guardian without wanting to sound sarcastic wrote that unlike both of his predecessors, who used to be foreign secretaries before assuming top job office with the Downing Street, i.e. the job of the British Prime Minister, which means that they did have relevant experience in foreign affairs though Sunak is considered to be lacking in vision and scope in terms of foreign affairs.

That Monday morning in the traditional banquet in the City of London, Rishi Sunak took the centre stage and rather pompously announced a quantum leap in how the UK will be approaching the rest of the world from then onwards. His words might have come across as firm and bombastic but it seems to be more of ‘the same old, same old’ only too predictable mantras, not much different from what Boris Johnson and Liz Truss had done before him. At least Boris was incomparably more charismatic and verbose with his witticisms. So one can draw a conclusion that there will simply be more confrontations, more divisions, more effort at ‘divide and rule’ strong arming both small and big nations at any possible geopolitical corner by the British. Sunak goes on to add that ‘the rate of geopolitical changes is being intensified

‘The British rivals and opponents make long-term plans’ – says he. ‘Russia is challenging the fundamental principles of UN Charter and China is campaigning fully for its global influence using all manner of instruments of its political power’

‘In facing up to these changes, short-term planning and wishful thinking will be insufficient’ – Sunak says.

Having said this, Rishi Sunak affirms that the UK will be waging even a more brutal war against Russia (with the double entendre of ’till the last Ukrainian dies’). ‘Do not doubt, he says. We shall stand with Ukraine as long as it takes.’

Come to think of it, Sunak’s predecessor Boris Johnson sounded much like Shakespeare’s Falstaff, though Rishi Sunak sounds more like the British Bollywood Henry V version (work in progress). I have yet to think who to compare Liz Truss with. Perhaps one of Shakespeare’s witches in Macbeth). Sunak makes a lame promise to keep the same level and even increase UK’s military support for Ukraine. He adds that China should brace up for a brutal confrontation as well. I can only imagine his soon to be rickety, admonishing finger lingering pathetically in midair at Vladimir Putin and Xi. Because UK has to change their approach to China – says Sunak

He reiterated many a time the so-called Golden Era had come to an end together with the naive notion that the trade would automatically bring about societal and political reforms (it seems to be that only him and the UK, USA and EU politicians have been entertaining these naive notions and surely not the Chinese, the Russians or the rest of the world). Then he went on tediously to admit that China represents a systematic challenge to the British values and interests.

This challenge is becoming more acute as China grows towards more authoritarianism – Sunak claims (more flawed logic on his part, methinks). That is why they (i.e. the Brits and the ‘Muricans) are putting an end to a global dependence on authoritarian regimes starting from the Russian gas (‘Simon-says’ Sunak claims yet again)

Surely the whole world can see with their own eyes how good they are at it in that the UK joins anti-Russian sanctions in purchasing even more Russian gas and energy resources than before but via some bogus routes unbeknownst to the general public.

But Sunak claims he remains undaunted by this very fact in that he pledges to create anti-Russian and anti-Chinese alliances world wide all the way to the Middle East and Indo-Pacific region. It goes without saying that USA and EU belong to this batch

‘Strong, home economy as the solid foundation for the relations abroad’ on he goes with his bland mantras and ‘confrontation with the rivals by way of robust pragmatism rather than big, bombastic words ‘ he claims again

But there lies the obvious flaw in Sunak’s words of empty grandeur and posturing Rishi Sunak is in fact trying to plug the holes in a sinking ship, The Guardian reports. All the ideas about the economic growth are put aside because the PM is facing a most severe economic crisis, the severity of which will mark the next two years of his position as a PM. Ben Wallace, UK Defence Minister (Secretary of State for Defence) on the other hand keeps complaining that he had better stay at home and tootle around because the British army needs more funding urgently.

The Times elaborates on this that the British Army will have had the least number of soldiers ever since its wars against Napoleon

Further reductions and price hikes are not out of the questions because of the overwhelming crisis.

In a nutshell, UK (complete with the Collective West) seems to be brilliant at promoting their own values globally and not much beyond that. The recent poll in UK indicates that the number of Christians have fallen in UK and the power of UK to influence and make an impact on the world is meagre if not debatable.

One has to wonder what power is there, if any for the UK to make any palpable global impact from now on?

By Natasha Wright
Source: Strategic Culture Foundation

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