On November 10-12, 2014, world leaders from the 21 member states of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) gathered together for APEC China 2014, the 26th annual APEC summit, held in Beijing. APEC leaders discussed the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and agreed to commence work on the Free Trade Area of the Asia Pacific (FTAAP), an even larger free-trade regime that would include not only all 12 of the TPP member states (Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States, and Vietnam) but also Communist China and Russia.
On the opening day of the summit, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, who supports the TPP, told reporters, "I think that everyone wants to see freer trade in the Asia-Pacific region and my understanding is that once the TPP has been concluded, other countries are welcome to accede to it." Could one of those "other countries" include Communist China? News reports suggest yes.
An October 10, 2014 article published in the Diplomat online reported: "China is open to joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a high-ranking Chinese official indicated on Wednesday at a think-tank in Washington, DC." When asked if China would be interested in joining the TPP, Zhu Guangyao, China's vice minister of finance and a member of the Communist Party of China since 1987, replied that "China was 'very open' to the global economy and plans to continue its decades-long process of 'reform and opening up' under Xi Jinping," according to the Diplomat. In the same article, the Diplomat further reported that "In May 2013, China's Commerce Ministry indicated that it was looking more seriously at the possibility of China joining the TPP."
Reporting on APEC China 2014, China Daily, the Communist Party of China's state-run newspaper, stated that China's goal is to "counter the growing trend of fragmentation in the region that directly undermines economic integration, not the TPP or any other specific freetrade agreement." So China claims that it is not working to counter the TPP, but rather "the growing trend of fragmentation in the region." [Emphasis added]. Behind all the Leninist newspeak, "fragmentation" can be understood to mean the independence of nations. China wants greater economic integration for the Asia Pacific region, replacing independence with interdependence.
Addressing APEC leaders at the summit, Chinese President and General Secretary of the Communist Party of China Xi Jinping said, "The world economic recovery still faces many unpredictable and destabilizing factors. We need to intensify regional economic integration and foster an open environment that is conducive to long-term development."
Despite these movements on China's part, the American mainstream media has, for the most part, portrayed the TPP as a counterweight to contain the rise of China.
One article published in Forbes magazine stated: "American trade policy is trying to contain China, notably through the mega-regional TPP (Trans Pacific Partnership), from which China is excluded." Another article, from the Wall Street Journal, portrays the TPP as an American initiative rivaling the FTAAP, which is portrayed as a Chinese initiative:
In the run-up to the APEC summit, people familiar with the matter say, the U.S. blocked China's efforts to begin negotiations on a regional free-trade agreement, the Free Trade Area of the Asia Pacific, because it conflicted with a Washington-backed alternative known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership that excludes China.
The Wall Street Journal article did, however, concede the following fact: "Beijing continued to promote its preferred deal in presummit meetings but won endorsement for the pact only as a long-term goal."
The truth is that both China and the United States are members of APEC. The fact that China won endorsement for the FTAAP as a "long-term goal" demonstrates the United States' willingness, under President Obama, to abrogate its sovereignty and to economically integrate the United States with Russia and China in a future Asia-Pacific regional government based out of Beijing. Further evidence of the Obama administration's duplicity can be found in an official APEC press release posted on the White House website. The release, dated November 13, 2010 states:
Based on the results of this work, we have agreed that now is the time for APEC to translate FTAAP from an aspirational to a more concrete vision. To that end, we instruct APEC to take concrete steps toward realization of an FTAAP, which is a major instrument to further APEC's Regional Economic Integration (REI) agenda.
Here the White House not only admits its role, as a leader in APEC, in supporting a free-trade agreement of the entire Asia Pacific that would include the United States along with Russia and China, but we also see the White House going the extra mile by calling on APEC to take action, instructing "APEC to take concrete steps toward realization of an FTAAP." The United States wants the FTAAP every bit as much as China. The TPP is not designed to contain China; it's to converge with China. The press release goes on to say: "We believe that an FTAAP should be pursued as a comprehensive free trade agreement by developing and building on ongoing regional undertakings, such as ASEAN+3, ASEAN+6, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership, among others." [Emphasis added.] The TPP is the stepping stone for the FTAAP, and the White House acknowledges this in an APEC press release, available to the public on WhiteHouse.gov.
As The New American magazine's Senior Editor William F. Jasper has previously reported, "the TPP is actually intended as a door opener to an even larger and more ambitious Free Trade Area of the Asia Pacific (FTAAP). That is not merely the conjecture of this writer; U.S. officials and the original architects of the TPP have stated this explicitly."
One very important source that Jasper cites is a pro-TPP book published in 2013 by the Peter G. Peterson Institute for International Economics (PIIE), entitled Understanding the Trans-Pacific Partnership, coauthored by Jeffrey J. Schott, Barbara Kotschwar, and Julia Muir. "The PIIE is one of the premier global think tanks and has played an especially important role in promoting the WTO, IMF, United Nations, and free trade agreements (FTAs), including NAFTA, CAFTA, TPP, and FTAAP," Jasper writes.
As Jasper points out, in Chapter 1 of Understanding the Trans-Pacific Partnership we find:
The TPP is regarded as an interim arrangement or stepping stone toward a broader, regionwide Free Trade Area of the Asia Pacific (FTAAP), possibly within a decade, as envisaged by APEC leaders in Bogor [Indonesia] in November 1994 and reaffirmed more recently by them in their meeting in Honolulu in November 2011. TPP negotiators are not only thinking about new countries joining the ongoing talks but also planning and constructing the trade pact with a view toward future linkages with other APEC members, including and especially China. [Emphasis added].
The book's sixth chapter, revealingly entitled "Moving from TPP to FTAAP," declares: "The current TPP architects envision building an eventual FTAAP on the comprehensive foundations of the TPP accord, with other APEC countries joining the pact in coming years."
Understanding the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the White House press release should remove any doubt or speculation regarding the TPP's true purpose. Far from creating new American jobs and bolstering the U.S. economy or that of its allies in the face of a rising China or Russia, it is the engine fueling the drive toward a future unified Asia Pacific regional bloc, in which the United States would be relegated to a subordinate member state with Eastern-bloc Marxist states such as China and Russia at the helm.
In his December 8-14, 2014 weekly review of the news, Arthur Thompson, CEO of The John Birch Society, commented: "We have the White House giving this press release out in agreement, as a leader of APEC, that they've got to move toward the FTAAP. What we see is that the TPP is simply a salami slice, if you will, toward that end." Mr. Thompson further elaborated:
It's all about "integration," ladies and gentlemen. They use the word and it's dangerous. It means we would lose the independence over our own economy if we integrate in this super structure that they're tying to create a step at a time. The first step is the TPP, and then the FTAAP. And all the while this was the plan, but they're playing us off with "The TPP is 'good'; the FTAAP is 'bad'" agenda to get the American businessman fooled into getting his foot on the path toward integrating all of these countries together into what they call the "New World Order."
The TPP's passage would be a major step toward the realization of APEC's vision for the Free Trade Area of the Asia Pacific, facilitating not only the economic convergence of East and West but eroding the remaining vestiges of American sovereignty and independence.