The new book that digs into the weeds of our China Panic, and shatters some of the more annoying shibboleths that abound.
For a profession that believes it’s writing the “rough first draft of history,” it’s a shame so much journalism is ahistorical. The news cycle has little time to dwell deeply on the complexities of the past and how they shape our present.
Nowhere is that more evident than in much of the analysis of our troubled relationship with China. The conventional narrative — of Australian sovereignty on the brink, of an uncompromising Beijing demanding we bend to its will — is an article of faith which frames most stories on China these days.
There’s truth to all that. And yet what reporting struggles to do is explain the why. Why do we view China’s superpower behaviour as uniquely evil while seeking comfort in American hegemony? Why did our spies come in from the cold and start sounding the alarm on China? Why do we fulminate over some human rights abuses and merely shrug at others?
Keep reading to find out more about the book interrogating Australia’s “China Panic”…
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