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'Clash of Civilizations' or Crisis of Civilization?

• By Pepe Escobar Asia Times

The outlook of current Western leaders suggests that humanity will be hard pressed to survive the 21st century

Talk about a graphic display of soft power: Beijing this week hosted the Conference on Dialogue of Asian Civilizations

Organized under the direct supervision of President Xi Jinping it  took place amid an "Asian Culture Carnival."  Sure, there were dubious, kitschy and syrupy overtones, but what really mattered was what Xi himself had to say to China and all of Asia.

In his keynote speech, the Chinese leader essentially stressed that one civilization forcing itself upon another is "foolish" and "disastrous." In Xi's concept of a dialogue of civilizations, he referred to the New Silk Roads, or Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), as programs that "have expanded the channels for communication exchanges."

Xi's composure and rationality present a stark, contrasting message to US President Donald Trump's "Make America Great Again" campaign. The Clash of Civilizat... Samuel P. Huntington Best Price: $4.41 Buy New $9.99 (as of 04:25 EDT - Details)

West vs East and South

Compare and contrast Xi's comments with what happened at a security forum in Washington just over two weeks earlier. Then, a bureaucrat by the name of Kiron Skinner, the State Department's policy planning director, characterized US-China rivalry as a "clash of civilizations," and "a fight with a really different civilization and ideology the US hasn't had before."

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