Disclaimer: I do not pretend to be an expert on all things China. In fact, I know very little about China other than the drips of information I hear on Television and watching an occasional documentary on the country and its people. It is important to understand why I chose this book to read. I saw a brief interview of Bill Gertz and the book was being discussed and it tweaked my interest primarily because both Joe Biden and Donald Trump have made reference to China and how each would deal with the country if they were to be elected in 2020. The two sides could not be more at odds with each other on the subject of China. It is a vitally important subject for Americans to understand and for the future of America as a country. Reading the book seemed like an obvious decision to make provided you want to vote from a position of knowledge rather than a position of guesswork.
Why should anyone want to read this book by Bill Gertz? He referenced a statement in the book that should answer that question when he writes that the next battle for America will probably be fought in space. Like most Americans I have followed the exploits of America’s space program and have remained in awe over its accomplishments. This book changed all of that for me.
You would have to be a fool not to understand that China spies on America and America spies on China. The same holds true for just about any country in the world. Even our allies spy on each other, that is just the way things are. The book is about China and the lengths that China will go including murder to spy on all of its adversaries and especially America. As stated in the book, China has no rule book by which it will play in its quest for world dominance.
I am not familiar with the Chinese language and it was difficult for me to follow the various Chinese personal names or the names of its organizations and cities. Such knowledge was not necessary to understand what Gertz wrote about. His message came across very loud and very clear. China is our enemy and she will do anything and everything to get what she wants – world domination! The book explains how “fear” becomes the weapon of choice for the Communist Chinese Government. The Chinese people fear their government and it becomes painfully clear that America has engaged in appeasement over the last several decades out of fear of what China might do, politically, economically, and militarily. Until President Trump took office, every President chose NOT to confront China and its tactics. To emphasize how important this relationship has become one only need to consider the recent creation of America’s Space Force. I thought it was just an idea to appease America’s thirst for all things relating to space. On the contrary. If you go back to what Gertz said about the next battlefield, you get a hint as to why Trump created the Space Force. China has created a plan to take out America’s use of space through by removing or destroying its satellites. Almost everything we do as a country is in someway connected to the multitudes of satellites. Disable them, and you disable America.
The contents of the book are obviously over my head given my lack of knowledge of China. Even so, it was clear enough for me to understand that EVERY American and EVERY ally of America should either read this book or begin studying China because it will be the next great battle for the entire free world. For people and countries who feel that this is not my problem, if America should ever fall, where will people go? Who will protect freedom loving people and the freedoms they cherish so dearly or should cherish dearly? There seems to always be someone waiting to dominate the world. In my lifetime it was first Germany, then it was the Communist Soviet Union, then it was Radical Islam and now it is Communist China. They just keep coming.
Gertz does not just lay out the problems that Communist China presents to the world, he also identifies the steps that America and its allies should immediately take and one of those steps is accomplished with his book – educate Americans about the goals and ambitions of Communist China!
Who should read this book? Every American would benefit from reading it and should read it, sooner rather than later.
Would I read it again? Probably not. Not because it is not a great read, it can be overwhelming and reading it once should convey the importance of knowing you enemy and what the enemy is capable of doing.
Would I give it a gift? Probably not. It is the kind of book someone would WANT to read to become knowledgeable. If there is no interest, giving it as gift would be a waste of time and money even though everyone ought to read it. It’s not a book someone would want to relax with on a trip to the beach.