What the China Miracle Means
Russia knew exactly what it was doing by timing its invasion of Georgia for August 7. It so happened that the world was engrossed in an apparently far more compelling drama at the time: the imminent start of the spectacular Olympic Games in Beijing.
China used the occasion to announce itself to the world as a power every bit as vibrant and muscular as the athletes it hosted. Unabashedly confident, radiating with national pride, exploding into modernity—China is on fire.
“There are simply no words adequate … to describe this phenomenon, especially as seen by the eye at street level,” one of our readers wrote us from Beijing after the Olympics’ opening ceremony. “Economic growth figures, China’s purchase of U.S. Treasury bonds and takeover of British companies—[these] can’t capture in words what is visible to a person in this city. Ordinary people who still regard China as [backward] would be stunned into silence if they laid eyes on Beijing (which … is not as large as the main commercial city, Shanghai). In fact, judging by what I see, the day China surpasses the U.S. as the world’s largest economy is much nearer than all the forecasts indicate.”
Critics groused about China’s poor human rights, its authoritarianism, its support for corrupt regimes, its pollution. Correct as they are, their criticisms simply aren’t going to stop this bullet train. This country is barreling into the future—and, in the process, changing the world.
This is a revolution. It is, in fact, a prophecy. A look at the future.
America Plus a Billion
In one sense, it’s a question of simple math. China has 1.3 billion people—one out of every five people on Earth. That’s America’s population plus a billion. Now, multiply any trend—social, economic, technologic, gastronomic—by 1.3 billion, and you will see a huge global impact. And the trend in China is definitely toward bigger, faster and more.
China uses nearly half the world’s cement. From having no highways just 20 years ago, today it has 30,000 miles of them. And those roads bear the weight of 25,000 more cars every day—9 million more per year. Soon, China will be not only the world’s biggest market for new cars, but also its largest carmaker. It consumes one third of the world’s iron and steel.
Today, China has 147 airports. In the coming decade, it plans to build 97 more.
Each year, almost 8 million Chinese move from the country to the city. This urban migration is driving the construction of the equivalent of Chicago plus Detroit—each year. Today, the United States has 9 cities of over a million people. China has 160 of them.
China’s mushrooming economy—growing at five times the speed of America’s, and due this year to pass Germany’s as the world’s third largest—creates a million new jobs per month. In a single generation, China has lifted 600 million people out of poverty, half of them into the middle class. Such development is simply jaw-dropping. Historically unprecedented.
Here’s why this trend is so earthshaking. It takes a lot of resources to fuel such explosive growth on such an enormous scale. More food, more electricity—more everything. That’s a crushing reality when over a billion people suddenly start gaining an appetite for consumption.
The trouble is, some of those resources are already in short supply on our planet.
An abc News report, China Inside Out, quoted one expert saying that for China’s mammoth population to enjoy affluence as great as America’s, the necessary resources would demand another planet.
And that is why, with just a pinch of foresight, you can see where this trend is headed.
The World’s Hungry Teenager
China is about to pass the U.S. as the world’s largest energy consumer. Between 2000 and 2006, China’s increase in energy demand exceeded all the electricity it had used to that point in history. Right now, some Chinese factories have to shut down several days per week simply because they don’t have enough voltage. The nation is making a heroic effort to keep pace with demand: Last year alone, it built new power-generating capacity equivalent to what all of France uses. It commissions a new power station every four days. Besides the 30 new nuclear power plants it is currently constructing, it plans to build 500 more coal-fired power plants in the next decade. It already consumes about a third of global coal production.
Meanwhile, those 9 million new Chinese cars each year need gasoline. China already imports 160 million tons of oil per year, and this demand is skyrocketing. With $115-a-barrel oil already ravaging oil-importing economies the world over, China’s growing oil thirst puts additional, unwelcome strain on supplies. Just a decade ago, China was a net exporter of oil; now it’s the number-two importer after America.
China is the world’s hungry teenager. In order to fill these colossal cravings, Beijing has launched an extraordinary outreach program into the rest of the world.
Forcing the Issue
China has started by being an invaluable neighbor, making itself the top or number-two trading partner of virtually every nation in Asia. “Seeking strength in numbers, Southeast Asian governments strive not only to tap into China’s new wealth, but also to embed Beijing in a thicket of organizations and dialogues in the name of ‘community-building’ and closer integration,” wrote Ellen Frost in Global Politician. “Conscious of residual wariness, Chinese leaders go out of their way to reassure their Asian neighbors that Chinese intentions are entirely peaceful. Unlike Washington, China has projected a sympathetic and listening attitude, offering aid and trade deals without immediately demanding anything in return. Beijing has settled virtually all of its land-based disputes and put its maritime territorial disputes in the East and South China seas on the back burner” (May 14).
Beijing is also extending itself diplomatically, economically and even militarily into anywhere and everywhere in the world with resources for sale. It has significant economic ties with all but five of Africa’s 53 countries. It has stormed virtually the whole of the Caribbean and Latin America. It has laid inroads throughout the Middle East—the government’s goal is to do $100 billion in total trade with the region by 2010.
And Beijing exhibits none of the qualms many Western nations do over doing business with corrupt, authoritarian, dictatorial, even genocidal regimes. It doesn’t sermonize—it just floods other nations with cash, workers, infrastructure, weapons and whatever else they need. Usually, it leaves with resources. And in some cases, it leaves behind a political mess.
Look at what is happening here. China’s meteoric growth and aggressive chase for resources is forcing the issue on the rest of the world.
Ethical hang-ups, anemic ambition, bureaucratic sluggishness—these factors are starting to leave other nations out in the cold in the intensifying contest over Earth’s wealth. China has upped the ante. Its success—in what could be viewed, at this stage, as soft imperialism—obliges other nations that want to remain competitive to step up. You can already see it happening.
This is what makes these trends so prophetic.
A Terrifying Reality
Watch. The rise of the Chinese juggernaut graphically presages a developing—and terrifying—reality: that, more and more, the nations reaping the richest rewards in this rapidly developing resource war will be the more assertive, enterprising nations. The more rapacious nations.
They will also be the more autocratic nations—those governed by tough, politically empowered leaders, those least encumbered by political correctness and bureaucracy. These are the nations that will strike aggressively, ruthlessly, to stake their claims and defend them.
This trend portends more than just a world dominated by more aggressive nations. As soon as you have more than one power acting this way, you have all the makings for out-and-out war.
Now, align these trends with biblical prophecy. Read Revelation 17 and 18. There you see a detailed, horrifying picture of an emergent empire of unprecedented rapacity. In order to fuel its furnaces and drive its imperialist machinery, it will conquer nations, establishing colonies and protectorates the world over and raping them of their resources. In its opulence it will seduce and deal with the globe’s wealthiest corporate moguls, riding their backs and enriching itself at the expense of the rest of the world.
Those biblical prophecies speak of our day today—this time of America’s decline, of China’s rise, of global economic instability and wmd proliferation. We are about to see the sudden, violent surfacing of this superpower.
But this empire will not be China! It will not be Asian at all.
In fact, in view of biblical prophecy, we must view China’s rise as being a likely provocation for this empire to rise up and strike!
This passage in Revelation—along with dozens of others that provide more vivid details—is speaking of an emerging European empire, a resurrection, in fact, of the Holy Roman Empire! You can be sure it is watching intently what China is doing today, and, behind closed doors, plotting its retaliation. It simply will not be left behind in the coming resource war.
You need to understand these prophecies—their fulfillment is going to rock the world off its axis. Order a free copy of Herbert W. Armstrong’s masterful booklet Who or What Is the Prophetic Beast? for a riveting study of this vital subject. On theTrumpet.com you can also read our March 2006 article “The Battleground” for more information.
The China miracle we are witnessing before our eyes is prophecy being fulfilled! For not only is it certain to provoke Europe to assume a far more combative posture in securing its much-needed resources, but China itself—along with its newly empowered and belligerent neighbor Russia—has a significant role to play in the events prophesied to unfold shortly. Request a free copy of our booklet Russia and China in Prophecy to understand. And keep your eye on China. Within a few short years, this nation—the ascendant, proud China that has emerged today—will dazzle the world with pyrotechnics far grander than those recently on display in Beijing. Watching its vault into great-power status truly is a look at the future.