The Chinese Communist Party which controls the government of China since the 1949 revolution celebrated 30 years of economic growth and progress by opening up the nation to the world and allowing mostly free trade with other states. The result is that China is now the fourth largest economy in the world, and has gone from a nation in deep poverty to a nation that has undergone dramatic economic, technological and social process.
In December 1978, moderates and reformers within China's Communist Party won support for the launch of a new tidal wave shift from the radical policies that left China in chaos that focused on class struggle, and instead decided to open up the nation to the world and improve the economy. Part of this opening up brought in huge foreign investment. And nations such as the United States that formerly boycotted goods from Communist states opened up trade to China.
Chinese leader Deng Xiaping, who was a loyal sidekick to Communist leader Mao Tse Tung, became the first pragmatic Chinese Communist leader and gave his full approval to the goals of seeking truth by looking at the real facts at hand and not the government propaganda machine generated facts, which was a new level of pragmatism not witnessed since the 1949 revolution that brought the Communists to power.
China's foreign policy also tilted more towards the United States as well during the 1970's as well, as China and Russia grew more distrustful of each other. There was also a sense in the Nixon Administration that China wanted closer relations with the U.S. that was continued under both Presidents Ford and Carter to continue these foreign policy breakthroughs with China pioneered by the Nixon Administration's change of foreign policy.
China's economic growth has also seen China grow in respect as a world community member that contributes to economic growth in less developed areas such as Africa as well as contributing peace keeping troops to the many UN peacekeeping missions around the world. In fact, China announced that it will actually increase aid to Africa to a total of 5 billion U.S. dollars in both loans and other economic assistance in 2009 despite the world economic crisis that is certain to slow the Chinese economy as well.
China also pledged continued full support for the more fully capitalist economy organized economies of both Hong Kong and Macao. Hong Kong is China's important financial center while Macao continues as a resort type region with massive hotels and casino gambling allowed.
Such reforms are far from the revolutionary thinking of the 1949 leaders such as Chairman Mao, but the pragmatic thinking has allowed China great progress as well as world respect. And Chinese President Hu Jintao seems to be getting great respect and popularity from his own people for his moderate rule in many areas. Despite a lack of full political or social freedom, the dramatic improvement in life in China has given the government more leeway with the Chinese public and helped to dampen those who might have sought to overthrow the Communist system much as the Soviet system was swept aside by the popular uprising there.
China is still a long ways from a democratic state by any means. And some freedoms are still in very short supply in this nation. But an employed population with a full stomach and decent clothes to wear is a big improvement from the China of 30 years ago that was a very backward and very poor nation.
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