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An event to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China is held at Tiananmen Square in Beijing on July 1. Photo: Kyodo

Letters | Why Chinese diplomats should not mind ‘Wolf Warrior’ label

  • Chinese envoys should recognise how much the tale of Rambo, the inspiration for the ‘Wolf Warrior’ movie series, resembles China’s own success story
This is in response to your article “ China’s Wolf Warrior diplomacy is our justified defence – get used to it” (June 17). In an interview, China’s envoy to France Lu Shaye denounced the term “Wolf Warrior diplomacy” as carrying a negative meaning.

I feel this is a misinterpretation of the term derived from the Wolf Warrior movie franchise, China’s answer to Hollywood’s Rambo movie series.

Rambo’s character is a lone warrior who suffered combat trauma, does not conform to norms, quickly adapts to the changing environment, enters dangerous situations alone and is willing to go to great lengths to save his friends from any danger.

These characteristics greatly resemble China. China went through a painful Cultural Revolution which severely damaged its economy. It then discarded the socialist planned economy and created its own state-led, market-oriented development model.

When this was launched, it was way off the beaten track and did not conform to well-established norms of economic models. Very few believed that this would ever succeed.

During the past 40 years, China has adapted this economic model to become the world’s second-largest economy. It has successfully navigated multiple financial crises from the Asian financial crisis in 1997 to the global financial crisis of 2008 and the ongoing crisis wrought by the Covid-19 pandemic, where it is the first major economy that has rebounded.
In the last 10 years, China has entered underserved markets such as Africa. Before China’s entry, Africa was considered financially dangerous for large investments because of its continued political instability and low returns on investment. But China has risked billions of its investment in natural resources for infrastructure deals which have augmented Chinese supply chains and further enhanced its industrial competitiveness.
Finally, China does go to great lengths to stand by its friends, even in the worst of times. The best example of this is its relationship with Pakistan. While these nations have been friends for many years, China put its support behind Pakistan when the latter came under intense global scrutiny after former al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was found in Abbottabad and killed by US Marines.

So, Lu should take heart from the fact that Rambo – the famous “Wolf Warrior” of the West – greatly resembles China’s success story. Those similarities can be used to turn the tables on Western media.

Avisekh Biswas, Mong Kok