By: Jianli Yang

September 17, 2020

China, which embarked on the mission of becoming a superpower by showing its economic and military might to the world, now may be brought to its knees over a shortage of food. Reduction in overall domestic food production; a recent deluge in the Yangtze River basin, the rice bowl of China; and a slash in imports, mostly aggravated by deteriorating diplomatic relations, has caused Beijing to hit the panic button.

Chinese President Xi Jinping recently launched the “Clean Plate” campaign to ensure that food supplies do not deplete quickly and bring about a repetition of the 1959 Great Famine, in which millions of people starved to death. And recent skirmishes along the Sino-Indian border, as well as China’s aggression in the South China Sea, may be Xi’s strategy to divert attention from China’s pending food crisis, just as Mao Zedong did in 1962 to mask the failed Great Leap Forward movement. [continue reading…]

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