Since Xi Jingping rose to power in 2012, China has embarked on a new phase of expanding their role as a global superpower. Gone are the days of the charm offensive and the peaceful rise, here come the 'wolf warriors.' Xi's "Chinese Dream" has been pitched by state propaganda as a visionary plan for a "great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation" leading up to the year 2049, but now it seems they are entering a phase where the internal threats significantly outweigh the external challenges to realizing this dream.
Sun argues that the development and implementation of major Chinese foreign policy decisions are hardly unilateral dictates from the party leadership. Instead, there are a multitude of actors and sources of pressure from society playing out in intraparty fighting, inter-ministerial feuding, social media, TV dramas and movies, among others. Understanding how these forces work and interact can do much to advance our understanding of how China reaches its foreign policy outcomes - decisions which of course have major impacts on the global system writ large.
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