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Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Volume 36, Number 22. 1973

History Behind China's Attitude

History Behind China's Attitude

The Chinese attitude to nuclear weapons is verified by historical facts. Eisenhower threatened the Chinese and North Koreans during the Korean war with nuclear attack. These threats compelled the Chinese and Koreans to negotiate an end to the war on American terms. As Burchett shows in his book Passport it was the US who adopted an unreasonable attitude and prolonged the talks and they used nuclear threats to bolster their position.

This was not an isolated instance of attempted nuclear blackmail by the US. During the Vietnam war Nixon constantly refused to rule out the use of nuclear weapons against North Vietnam. It was probably only the limited Chinese nuclear capacity, and their willingness to retaliate, that stopped Nixon from making history repeat itself.

US contingency plans for a nuclear attack on China are a well known fact. They were devised by the Rand Corporation in the event that US escalation of the Vietnam war provoked direct Chinese military assistance in Vietnam.

The Chinese analysis of the nuclear arms race has proved to be the correct one. US imperialists will never blow up the world, which they have the capacity to do, as that would defeat the reason for their existence. They want world hegemony, along with the USSR, to ensure their profits. No world equals no profits. US imperialists and Soviet social imperialists want nuclear weapons for limited use in wars to increase their diplomatic potency.

The Chinese have publically stated on numerous occasions that they will never be the first to use nuclear weapons. The US and USSR have never given any such undertaking, for that would undermine the credibility of any attempts at nuclear blackmail which they might make. Progressive nations should not allow themselves to be blackmailed into submission because they lack a nuclear arsenal. In this context the event of another Chinese nuclear test can hardly be considered an aggressive or hostile act.