China - and the dangerous drift to war in Asia

rampant

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Two big China stories in the last few days, first up article & thread on the Chinese Internment Camps


Second, a Chinese Intelligence Agent has defected to Australia


The last defection was 2005 I think.
 
Both sensationalist and alarmist but, if you cut through that, indicative of pol/mil trends in China. Is the rest of the world in a position, individually and collectively, diplomatically, militarily and/or economically, to call China out, or are we looking at the realpolitick of the 21st C?

'China’s Chairman Xi Jinping has gone rogue. His agents have infiltrated the US and Australia. He’s unashamedly engineering his own people. His scientists are building clones and killer AI. What next?

'Things are not going how Mr Xi anticipated. He got his spectacular 70th anniversary of the People’s Republic parade through central Beijing. But his international standing is in free fall. He wants to prove he’s been making China great again. He wants to show he can reshape the world. He wants to push the US to the sidelines. And he won’t budge an inch on the multitude of crises afflicting his authoritarian rule.

“Our determination and resolve,” China’s top diplomat Yang Jiechi declared, “are as firm as iron when it comes to defending our national interests and dignity on issues about Taiwan, maritime affairs, Xinjian, Tibet, Hong Kong as well as trade rifts. No one should expect China to swallow the bitter fruit that would damage our own interests.”


 
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(...) his international standing is in free fall. He wants to prove he’s been making China great again. He wants to show he can reshape the world. He wants to push the US to the sidelines. And he won’t budge an inch on the multitude of crises afflicting his authoritarian rule. (...)
But Mr Xi thinks he has it in hand. He’s casting aside all norms. International rules, regulations and restrictions are meaningless hurdles in his path. As a result, China appears on track to rapidly become the next rogue state.
So Xi is Trump-lite? MCGA (Make China Great Again)? I thought that was supposed to be a good thing, unless you were a "snowflake"?

Oh, and the spin the author puts on the gene edited baby story is at the hypersonic level. "The man behind China’s gene-edited baby outrage has vanished." Vanished? A reputable newspaper might have more accurately phrased that as "fired from his position in disgrace, tried in a court of law, and sentenced to three years in prison for conducting illegal research on humans". No doubt the author will excuse having left that bit out of his account by blaming the lizard people and the illuminati.
A year later, the man behind China’s gene-edited baby outrage has vanished.

Trained in the US, He Jiankui tinkered with genes associated with HIV-Aids resistance – and intelligence. Several modified babies have been born.

Perhaps the state-funded scientist’s worst offence was being caught. His story came to light as he sought to announce his breakthrough to an international gathering of his peers.

That hasn’t been the end of it.
 
So Xi is Trump-lite? MCGA (Make China Great Again)? I thought that was supposed to be a good thing, unless you were a "snowflake"?

Oh, and the spin the author puts on the gene edited baby story is at the hypersonic level. "The man behind China’s gene-edited baby outrage has vanished." Vanished? A reputable newspaper might have more accurately phrased that as "fired from his position in disgrace, tried in a court of law, and sentenced to three years in prison for conducting illegal research on humans". No doubt the author will excuse having left that bit out of his account by blaming the lizard people and the illuminati.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good 'journo conspiracy' theory!
 
Never let the facts get in the way of a good 'journo conspiracy' theory!
According to Mr Seidel, the facts are:

What’s all the point of such brutal new weaponry?

China is the world’s number-one guzzler of energy. And most of its oil and gas comes from the Middle East through narrow maritime chokepoints.

These can be closed off by a determined enemy.

Chairman Xi wants to control the Straits of Tiran on the Red Sea, the Malacca Strait of Singapore, the Karimata and Sunda Straits of Indonesia, the Taiwan Strait and the East China Sea.

That’s if his expensive diplomatic and economic Belt-and-Road initiative proves inadequate.
He seems to be asserting that their development of weapons to rival their potential opponents' is a bet-hedging in the event their main strategy of developing neighbouring nations' infrastructure fails. The reason he ascribes for them doing this is to prevent their opponents choking their resource supplies off should things go pear-shaped.

And that's apparently 'going rogue'?
 
According to Mr Seidel, the facts are:



He seems to be asserting that their development of weapons to rival their potential opponents' is a bet-hedging in the event their main strategy of developing neighbouring nations' infrastructure fails. The reason he ascribes for them doing this is to prevent their opponents choking their resource supplies off should things go pear-shaped.

And that's apparently 'going rogue'?
I don't know the Australian press that well, but I was under the impression that news.com.au was a tabloid of the most melodramatic sort.
 
I don't know the Australian press that well, but I was under the impression that news.com.au was a tabloid of the most melodramatic sort.
tldr; the largest circulated papers in OZ press are owned by Murdoch/ News corp., with a few indies here and there.

And the current gov't seems to be hell bent on cutting funding for the ABC News....just like the BBC news in the UK.
 
I don't know the Australian press that well, but I was under the impression that news.com.au was a tabloid of the most melodramatic sort.
Affirm. I only use it as a lazy gatherer site for wider articles. Which is why I provided the 'health warning' at the start of my post.
 
Although reported in the context of the current COVID-19 pandemic, on the strength of this interview, David Kilcullen's new book sounds like it's worth a read. Are we witnessing 'the end of Clausewitz', with the whole concept of state-on-state warfare being turned on its head, with now policy as a continuation of war by other means?

'When this week’s Group of Seven meeting fractured over U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s insistence that any joint statement include the phrase “Wuhan virus,” it was an easy moment for many commentators to decry American racism and claims of exceptionalism. Indeed, the Donald Trump administration has chosen an absurd hill to want to die on. But at least part of the motivation is understandable: The Chinese government, which horribly botched the response at the source of the coronavirus outbreak, is undertaking a full-court press to be seen as the international leader as Covid-19 has gone global, even pushing the conspiracy theory that it’s an “American disease” introduced by the U.S. Army.

'The skirmish over the coronavirus is only the latest in a struggle between Washington and Beijing for the hearts and minds of the rest of the world. One person who’s been watching this “Cool War” closely is David Kilcullen, author of the recently published “The Dragons and the Snakes: How the Rest Learned to Fight the West.” It’s a study of how China, and also Russia, are adopting nontraditional forms of warfare to counter the conventional military advantage of the U.S. and its allies. Kilcullen, a career infantry officer in the Australian Army, is best known in the U.S. as an influential adviser to U.S. Generals David Petraeus in Iraq and Stanley McChrystal in Afghanistan. Having hung up his combat helmet, he wears a lot of hats: professor of international and political studies at the University of New South Wales in Australia, professor of practice in global security at Arizona State University and chief executive of Cordillera, a global research firm.

'I figured Kilcullen would have some thoughts on how China is using the pandemic as a geopolitical weapon. Here is a lightly edited transcript of an exchange we had this week:

'Tobin Harshaw: You are primarily known as an expert in counterinsurgency and counterterrorism. What made you decide to take on a broader geopolitical topic, and how do you think your background gave you insight into great-power rivalry?

'David Kilcullen: Before being dragged into the War on Terror, I spent several years working on future warfare including advanced technologies and geopolitics of great-power competition. As an Australian Army officer, trained in conventional warfare, I served on exchange with the British Army in the 1990s and earlier watched the collapse of communism and the end of the Cold War “up close and personal” as a junior officer. So I participated in or directly observed many of the events I talk about in the book.

'As I turned to write this book, I traveled to many of the places I write about, and spoke with locals and experts, including traveling the entire length of the Arctic border between Russia and Norway by boat and quad bike, with a special unit that faces off against Russian troops every day. I spoke with intelligence officers and hybrid warfare operators in the Baltic States and Finland, and observed Russian and Chinese hybrid warfare efforts in Africa, Latin America and the Asia-Pacific region.

'TH: In terms of China, your book centers on what you call “conceptual envelopment.” Can you briefly talk about what you mean by that, and give some pre-coronavirus examples of how China practices it against the U.S. and its friends and allies.

'DK: One of the starkest things I observed in studying China’s evolving view of warfare is how much broader it is than our own narrow, conventional concept of combat on the battlefield. Chinese strategists are avoiding our conventional strength by going around us, outside the box.

'They talk about “non-military war operations” including financial warfare, manipulation of supply chains, control of advanced technologies such as 5G telecommunications, use of criminal networks including drug smugglers, and of course cyberwarfare and industrial espionage. I look at Chinese strategic real-estate acquisitions in the U.S., Europe, Australia and the Pacific, showing how their control of key infrastructure has helped shape the strategic environment to their advantage.

'TH: So how has China adapted the concept to a pandemic that started inside its borders? And how successful has it been trying to turn an initially botched response into a global propaganda victory?

'DK: Beijing has exploited the crisis in three ways. First, it is running a carefully orchestrated propaganda campaign to extend its influence, touting the alleged superiority of its authoritarian system over more open and liberal western approaches, blaming the virus on the U.S., and trying to stop people calling it by its place of origin (Wuhan) even though this is normal for other diseases (Ebola, Zika or Lyme disease, for example).

'Secondly, Chinese advisers are working with European officials to suppress the virus, promoting draconian measures, sending shipments of masks, ventilators and therapeutic supplies (for a price) from China. Beijing has also offered assistance to Pacific and Asian nations.

'As the full impact of the virus strikes Africa, Pakistan and Latin America, all places with extensive Chinese political presence and economic investment, we can expect China to deepen its influence even as Europe, Australasia and the Americas find themselves swamped.

'TH: How can the U.S. and allies like Australia blunt China’s coronavirus PR gambit and attempts to use the crises to further its goal of global leadership?

'DK: We can tell the truth about the origin of the virus and about our own successes and failures in dealing with it. People are rightly suspicious of Chinese data and assertions, given Beijing’s track record of lies and coverups. We have had more than our share of failures, hubris and overconfidence, too, but if we show we’re telling the truth, and begin helping others on an altruistic basis once our own considerable industrial capacity kicks into gear to respond, I think we can blunt Beijing’s approach.

'Longer-term, one result from this crisis needs to be a recognition that nonmilitary aspects of national resilience — public health, education, critical infrastructure, perhaps most importantly political reconciliation — are crucial. We need to think carefully about where we want our manufacturing base to reside, how dependent we want our critical-commodity supply chain to be on a hostile communist power, and how to balance the positive impacts of globalization against the risks we are experiencing now. That’s not a call for xenophobia or pulling up the drawbridge — just a recognition that there are trade-offs here.

'TH: I did a quick text search of my digital version of “The Dragons and the Snakes,” and it appears you’ve managed to write a book about great-power rivalry without the words “Thucydides Trap.” I’m in awe. Still, do you think a military conflict on some scale is inevitable between the U.S. and China?

'DK: There are certainly strategists in both countries who think that it is. I quote one Chinese general who suggests China will fight Taiwan by 2025 and the U.S. by 2035. I do think there’s a very real possibility of such a conflict, with devastating effects worldwide. In a situation of “conceptual envelopment” where one side’s definition of war is vastly broader than the other’s, two extremely dangerous things can happen. First, an adversary can be at war with us while we remain blissfully unaware until it’s too late, only realizing we’re in a war when we’ve already lost. Second, and even more dangerously, we can be engaging in what we think are normal peacetime interactions — trade wars, tariffs, competition over 5G infrastructure, for example — while an adversary with a broader concept of war sees these as warlike acts, and responds accordingly.

'I think the most important thing is that we not talk ourselves into a war with China. Based on the interviews I did for the book, and the documents I studied, I don’t think either Beijing or Washington wants a war. Rather, the most dangerous thing is that we so misunderstand each other that we end up miscalculating, blundering into a conflict neither side wants, but which we fall into anyway.

'TH: Looking to the long term, you are skeptical that the U.S. can maintain its “hard power” edge globally against China and Russia. If so, what is the best approach for Washington and its allies to push for their interests and values globally?

'DK: I sketch three options in the book. One is “doubling down,” which as you note I don’t think will work. If our adversaries have already evolved to invalidate our current approach, doing the same thing harder won’t help. The second option, to use military slang, is “embracing the suck” — accepting our inevitable decline and shooting for a soft landing by transitioning away from the current U.S.-led world order to something more sustainable and affordable for us. I suggest (and I’m sure both presidents would hate me saying this) that Barack Obama and Donald Trump pursued a version of this strategy, albeit with extremely different rhetoric! I suggest this isn’t going to work either: China is not interested in assuming our global burden, Russia isn’t capable of doing so, and neither is friendly enough that we would find them acceptable.

'In the end I go with a third way — what I call the “Byzantine approach” in reference to Byzantium, which survived more than a millennium after the fall of Rome by selectively copying adversaries, getting out of the business of occupying and trying to govern whole provinces as the Romans had done, mastering certain niche technologies, and (most importantly) focusing on resilience and sustainability at home. To be clear, I say that this too might not work, but I suggest it’s the best bet to buy time.'


 
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(...) 'TH: Looking to the long term, you are skeptical that the U.S. can maintain its “hard power” edge globally against China and Russia. If so, what is the best approach for Washington and its allies to push for their interests and values globally?

'DK: I sketch three options in the book. One is “doubling down,” which as you note I don’t think will work. If our adversaries have already evolved to invalidate our current approach, doing the same thing harder won’t help. The second option, to use military slang, is “embracing the suck” — accepting our inevitable decline and shooting for a soft landing by transitioning away from the current U.S.-led world order to something more sustainable and affordable for us. I suggest (and I’m sure both presidents would hate me saying this) that Barack Obama and Donald Trump pursued a version of this strategy, albeit with extremely different rhetoric! I suggest this isn’t going to work either: China is not interested in assuming our global burden, Russia isn’t capable of doing so, and neither is friendly enough that we would find them acceptable.

'In the end I go with a third way — what I call the “Byzantine approach” in reference to Byzantium, which survived more than a millennium after the fall of Rome by selectively copying adversaries, getting out of the business of occupying and trying to govern whole provinces as the Romans had done, mastering certain niche technologies, and (most importantly) focusing on resilience and sustainability at home. To be clear, I say that this too might not work, but I suggest it’s the best bet to buy time.'


The American discussion of how COVID-19 fits into their foreign policy is just a continuation of their existing struggle for global power. As the bit that I've quoted above states, the US has to either try to somehow maintain dominance, or else resign themselves to managing their decline.

The brief period of time, a few decades, in which the US held unchallenged global dominance was based on transitory historical events and trends. They now face the same future that Britain and France did during the 20th century, which is decline from being a global power to being just another power.

I have have to disagree with several of his points though. One is that I don't see Russia as a rising power. They recovered somewhat from total collapse in the 1990s, but in their present form they will not become a first rank power again in the foreseeable future. They will be an important power, but mainly in their immediate neighbourhood and their influence further afield will be mainly among countries who are diplomatically isolated from the world system in general. Or to put the latter another way, they'll be friends to countries who don't have any other friends.

Another is his characterisation of Obama as accepting US decline. Obama's original strategy was to try to pull much of their available resources out of Europe and the Middle East and focus on confronting China. That he failed to put his plans into practice due to the inherent difficulty combined with events going against him doesn't detract from what he wanted to do - his "pivot to Asia".

Trump on the other hand has no real long term strategy and vacillates between isolationism and confronting China. He's fundamentally an opportunist. His attempts to buy Greenland from Denmark are a classic example of this, and make Chinese property investments abroad look like small change in comparison. On the other hand his "America first" line plays to an isolationist and mercantilist attitude which isn't compatible with maintaining the global network of alliances required for the US to maintain global dominance.

Yet another important point that the author misses is India's rise in the world. Most long term economic projections see India surpassing the US late in this century, where upon the US will find themselves in third place. Given India's attitudes and self image, I don't see India as being willing to accept playing second fiddle to the US any longer than necessary (or more likely, not even that long). India will celebrate their surpassing of the US and seek to rub everyone's nose in it as they see it as the final shedding of the past and their resumption (as they see it) of their rightful place in the world.

The US falling to third place in the world will probably be a bigger blow to their self image than falling behind China, as it would take away any hope of somehow achieving the lead again.

Britain adjusted well to the loss of empire and fall in world power, but the self-image that most British had of themselves extended well beyond that of empire and world power. Britain also had a long history of being just another world power among many in a multi-polar world, and the post-WWII fall in power was in many ways a resumption of a previous pattern which many people were comfortable with.

The US have a foundational ideology and mythology which are still driving forces in their politics today, although usually operating at the subconscious level. This is their ideology of "Manifest Destiny", in which the US are destined, some would say ordained by God, to be world leaders. In the early days of their post independence history this led them to conflict with Britain. Today it leads them to see any potential rival in any sphere of endeavour as something which challenges their self image.

The author's “Byzantine approach” is not something that will likely meet with much acceptance in the US, at least in the near term, as it implies jettisoning the ideology of Manifest Destiny. That will be too much of a conceptual change for most Americans to accept. Many will find it easier to accept a drift to war with either China or India (or both) than to change their world view and self image.

The danger for Europe, Britain, and other parts of the world which exist outside of this trio is getting drawn into a war in which they have no interest, or indeed is contrary to their interests. The Americans would likely see any reluctance on the part of others as a "betrayal", and react in ways which further isolated themselves.

The above dystopian sequence isn't inevitable. It is possible that the US may gain a far-seeing political leadership who can persuade their public to accept America's place in a multi-polar world and avoid wasting resources on futile efforts to prevent the inevitable. Far-seeing political leadership however is not something the US seems particularly endowed with at this time, so I am not optimistic about their future.
 
@terminal

"The danger for Europe, Britain, and other parts of the world which exist outside of this trio is getting drawn into a war in which they have no interest, or indeed is contrary to their interests. The Americans would likely see any reluctance on the part of others as a "betrayal", and react in ways which further isolated themselves."

Is how I see it. It will even extend to what we buy.
 
@terminal

"The danger for Europe, Britain, and other parts of the world which exist outside of this trio is getting drawn into a war in which they have no interest, or indeed is contrary to their interests. The Americans would likely see any reluctance on the part of others as a "betrayal", and react in ways which further isolated themselves."

Is how I see it. It will even extend to what we buy.
The way things stand now, you are correct.
 
The American discussion of how COVID-19 fits into their foreign policy is just a continuation of their existing struggle for global power. As the bit that I've quoted above states, the US has to either try to somehow maintain dominance, or else resign themselves to managing their decline.

The brief period of time, a few decades, in which the US held unchallenged global dominance was based on transitory historical events and trends. They now face the same future that Britain and France did during the 20th century, which is decline from being a global power to being just another power.

I have have to disagree with several of his points though. One is that I don't see Russia as a rising power. They recovered somewhat from total collapse in the 1990s, but in their present form they will not become a first rank power again in the foreseeable future. They will be an important power, but mainly in their immediate neighbourhood and their influence further afield will be mainly among countries who are diplomatically isolated from the world system in general. Or to put the latter another way, they'll be friends to countries who don't have any other friends.

Another is his characterisation of Obama as accepting US decline. Obama's original strategy was to try to pull much of their available resources out of Europe and the Middle East and focus on confronting China. That he failed to put his plans into practice due to the inherent difficulty combined with events going against him doesn't detract from what he wanted to do - his "pivot to Asia".

Trump on the other hand has no real long term strategy and vacillates between isolationism and confronting China. He's fundamentally an opportunist. His attempts to buy Greenland from Denmark are a classic example of this, and make Chinese property investments abroad look like small change in comparison. On the other hand his "America first" line plays to an isolationist and mercantilist attitude which isn't compatible with maintaining the global network of alliances required for the US to maintain global dominance.

Yet another important point that the author misses is India's rise in the world. Most long term economic projections see India surpassing the US late in this century, where upon the US will find themselves in third place. Given India's attitudes and self image, I don't see India as being willing to accept playing second fiddle to the US any longer than necessary (or more likely, not even that long). India will celebrate their surpassing of the US and seek to rub everyone's nose in it as they see it as the final shedding of the past and their resumption (as they see it) of their rightful place in the world.

The US falling to third place in the world will probably be a bigger blow to their self image than falling behind China, as it would take away any hope of somehow achieving the lead again.

Britain adjusted well to the loss of empire and fall in world power, but the self-image that most British had of themselves extended well beyond that of empire and world power. Britain also had a long history of being just another world power among many in a multi-polar world, and the post-WWII fall in power was in many ways a resumption of a previous pattern which many people were comfortable with.

The US have a foundational ideology and mythology which are still driving forces in their politics today, although usually operating at the subconscious level. This is their ideology of "Manifest Destiny", in which the US are destined, some would say ordained by God, to be world leaders. In the early days of their post independence history this led them to conflict with Britain. Today it leads them to see any potential rival in any sphere of endeavour as something which challenges their self image.

The author's “Byzantine approach” is not something that will likely meet with much acceptance in the US, at least in the near term, as it implies jettisoning the ideology of Manifest Destiny. That will be too much of a conceptual change for most Americans to accept. Many will find it easier to accept a drift to war with either China or India (or both) than to change their world view and self image.

The danger for Europe, Britain, and other parts of the world which exist outside of this trio is getting drawn into a war in which they have no interest, or indeed is contrary to their interests. The Americans would likely see any reluctance on the part of others as a "betrayal", and react in ways which further isolated themselves.

The above dystopian sequence isn't inevitable. It is possible that the US may gain a far-seeing political leadership who can persuade their public to accept America's place in a multi-polar world and avoid wasting resources on futile efforts to prevent the inevitable. Far-seeing political leadership however is not something the US seems particularly endowed with at this time, so I am not optimistic about their future.
But your future is also linked with ours. Canada is attached to our hip so to say. I do see the decoupling with China leading to the building up of North America to be a more self sufficient entity.
 
But your future is also linked with ours. Canada is attached to our hip so to say. I do see the decoupling with China leading to the building up of North America to be a more self sufficient entity.
The proportion of trade which Canada conducted with the US peaked around the year 2000 and has declined significantly since. Policy for all major parties is to place a high priority on diversifying trade further to high growth areas such as China, southeast Asia, and India. The way to faster economic growth at home is to trade more with regions which are currently growing faster.

Relations between Canada and the US overall have been deteriorating over the past couple of decades. They're not bad in absolute terms, but governments of all stripes in Canada want to diversify relations more in response to a long series of problems with the US, ranging from softwood lumber, to pipelines, to the more decent US action declaring major Canadian companies to be "threats to national security". It's not just Trump either, although he's ramped things up a few notches. The problems are with governments under all US parties over a span of decades.

That doesn't mean becoming dependent on trade with another single country either though. It means becoming less dependent on any one single country or market. For example Canada is the only G7 country to have free trade deals with every other G7 country, and that trend will continue. The more that the US tries to pull up the drawbridge in a sort of "Fortress America", the more determined that Canada will be to be on the outside of the moat.
 
The proportion of trade which Canada conducted with the US peaked around the year 2000 and has declined significantly since. Policy for all major parties is to place a high priority on diversifying trade further to high growth areas such as China, southeast Asia, and India. The way to faster economic growth at home is to trade more with regions which are currently growing faster.

Relations between Canada and the US overall have been deteriorating over the past couple of decades. They're not bad in absolute terms, but governments of all stripes in Canada want to diversify relations more in response to a long series of problems with the US, ranging from softwood lumber, to pipelines, to the more decent US action declaring major Canadian companies to be "threats to national security". It's not just Trump either, although he's ramped things up a few notches. The problems are with governments under all US parties over a span of decades.

That doesn't mean becoming dependent on trade with another single country either though. It means becoming less dependent on any one single country or market. For example Canada is the only G7 country to have free trade deals with every other G7 country, and that trend will continue. The more that the US tries to pull up the drawbridge in a sort of "Fortress America", the more determined that Canada will be to be on the outside of the moat.
The USMCA is also a guideline for future relations, and the United States has managed to bind your hands with China so to speak.

The US is your countries largest trading partner by far, and 75 percent of your exports go to the United States. Who else post COVID-19 is going to be able to fill that market share?

I am afraid you are stuck with us Terminal.
 
The USMCA is also a guideline for future relations,
Actually, you mean the CUSMA Treaty, as it is known in Canada.
A new Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement
On November 30, 2018, Canada, the United States and Mexico signed the new Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA), on the margins of the G20 Leaders’ Summit in Buenos Aires.

and the United States has managed to bind your hands with China so to speak.
Yes, the US can now pull out of the CUSMA treaty on six months notice for any reason or no reason if they don't like it. Just like they could with NAFTA right from the start. And Canada can do the same. There's nothing new in that regards. Trump wanted a symbolic "victory" after making so much noise about renegotiating so he rephrased that clause, but it's effectively the same as it has been for decades. He can have his symbolic victory, because it means nothing in real terms.

The US is your countries largest trading partner by far, and 75 percent of your exports go to the United States.
And 2 decades ago that 75 percent of trade with the US was 90 percent, and that trend will continue.

Who else post COVID-19 is going to be able to fill that market share?

I am afraid you are stuck with us Terminal.
You may have heard of this thing called globalisation. The US may be saying "stop the world I want to get off", but Canada isn't.

Canada isn't raising barriers to trading with the US. It's the US is doing that. The more barriers you raise towards trade with Canada, the more that Canadian businesses look elsewhere for markets and suppliers. You have a schizophrenic attitude towards trade.
 

The numbers do appear to be a bit more than “symbolic”... But you have your opinion and I have mine.

Globalization post COVID-19 will be an interesting concept. I would say prepare for Economic Nationalism now. China has exposed the many weaknesses of globalization, and it is not worth it in the minds of many
 

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