Totalitarian leaders need two things to survive. Unquestioned support of their “inner circle” and a pretense for action, i.e. an incident, real or made up. The decisive point in time for the rise of totalitarianism in Germany in the 1930s were the decisive events of German leader of June 30 to July 2, 1934, normally referred to as “The Night of the Long Knives”. In a swift action, the ascending German Leader took action against the SA, the Sturm Abeilung, or the Brown Shirts. The leader of the National Socialists could not have gotten to this point without the Brown Shirts, the rough, violent, undisciplined element vital to his rise. Yet he was on shaky ground and for years been developing the Black Shirts as his even more inner circle. In several days of violence, the German leader used his Black Shirts to round up, execute, and eliminate the Brown Shirts citing their “crimes”. It was classic, thuggish, treacherous, no boundaries, totalitarianism. Mr. Hitler couldn’t live without the Brown Shirts until he needed them no more and dispensed with them like a used plastic utensil via the Black Shirts.
Mr. Xi is showing similar traits in his consolidation of power within the Chinese Communist Party. He took power in 2012 but really didn’t begin his slow motion Night of the Long Knives until the unprecedented Party Congress in October 2022 where Xi had his predecessor unceremoniously and infamously marched out of the room. A tactic the German Leader never performed, but something Mr. Hussein (an admirer of the German leader) of Iraq did routinely and would have been proud of. This Party Congress marked the unprecedented third term election of Mr. Xi, from this point on, it was game on, as Xi created an accelerated wave of purges that resulted in the large-scale purge of late December 2023 where Xi proffered an unequivocal teaching point and life lesson to anyone that might consider opposing him for leadership of the CCP. This was Xi’s “Night of the Long Knives”.
Xi cleans house on scale
Returning from Uzbekistan in September 2022, after browbeating Putin for failures in Ukraine, rumors of Palace Intrigue and coup attempts in China exploded. Xi had to act decisively because in October 2022 was the Party Congress. The White Paper Revolution occurred right after the Party Congress on a massive scale and spooked Xi and the entire CCP leadership. All these events led to the December 2023 “Night of the Long Knives, nine Generals and Admirals have been eliminated en masse by their dismissal from the National People’s Congress.
A dark comedy on Soviet leadership palace intrigue was “The Death of Stalin”. Xi tries to be more cerebral and sophisticated, but likely the same dark comedic chaos is going on right now. The current nine flag officers removed include three former commanders or vice commanders of the PLA Rocket Force; one a former Air Force chief and one a Navy commander responsible for the South China Sea. Four officers were responsible for equipment.
Before the batch of nine removed during the Night of the Long Knives, immediately prior, other replacements were made:
Li Shangfu (Joint Chief’s Chairman equivalent): Missing, likely dead
Wei Fenghe, Li’s predeceser: Missing, likely dead
Wang Shaojun (Central Guard Unit Commander, no real American equivalent): Dead
Qin Gang (Secretary of State Equivalent): Missing, possibly executed
Top commander of the rocket force, Li Yuchao, also disappeared alongside his deputy Liu Guangbin and former deputy Zhang Zhenzhong (these may be the three referred to in news releases of the current nine flag officers removed).
BRICS Conference didn’t go quite right
The highly touted Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa (BRICS) in August 2023 was supposed to be the international equivalent of the October 2022 Party Congress. This was intended to be the Gold Medal Ceremony of the Olympics like effort of China to displace the United States. Up until this time, Xi was on a roll of success after success:
Flying spy balloons around the world and especially one over the American Missile fields and bomber bases with no pushback: Check
Expanding the Spy Base in Lourdes, Cuba: Check
Humiliating Yellen during her visit: Check
Pretending to be interested in what Blinken had to say during his visit: Check
Expanding the Spy Base in Lourdes, Cuba to Military Training and announcing it as Blinken flew back to America: Check
Allowing vague and absurd virtue signaling from John F. Kerry while being the largest polluter on the planet: Check
Taking over supervision of the Drug Cartels in the ungoverned space of Mexico and making Fentanyl in a much more efficient fashion: Check
Using the Fentanyl produced in Mexico under Chinese supervision and killing 10,000 Americans a month in 2023 and 70,000 total in 2022, more Americans than were killed in forty combined years of combat in the Vietnam War and the War on Terror: Check
Sending in legions of trained, military age males as para-militaries into America across the unsecure southern border and becoming decisively involved in “legal” and illegal cannabis production and distribution as gateway drugs toward Fentanyl: Check
Wooing Saudi Arabia into sales of oil in Yuan and a peace deal with Iran: Check
Setting up the BRICS conference to be the key event to build a coalition to capsize American world leadership: Check
Successfully using a captured occupant of the White House and his son to wreck America: Check
Xi was not on his best game at the BRICS, disrupted by several events that even the best totalitarian couldn’t control. Prices collapsed in China shortly before the BRICS conference. This price collapse was a stark indicator of China’s real economic health. And then, historic floods devastated Beijing and the regime attempted to use the neighborhoods of the populace as a moat causing anger and rage not seen since last year’s White Paper uprising.
After sacking his Foreign Minister and Nuclear Force Leadership Team immediately before BRICS, Xi sent in Wang Wentao to read a statement in the opening part of the conference. When Xi did appear, a bizarre tussle occured and the doors closed behind him as the South African guards wrestled and shoved with the Chinese entourage. A bit lowbrow for the self-appointed leader of the new world order.
Housecleaning greatly undermines readiness for invasion of Taiwan, but that doesn’t mean the CCP won’t try
The Chinese Night of the Long Knives does not bode well for Chinese military readiness for an imminent attack on Taiwan. If Xi was assessing the inventory of successes for China’s no boundaries plan to topple America as the world leader, China’s proxies of Russia, Iran, Hamas, Houthis, Somalis, and Venezuela are having great success setting off arson fires across the world to distract and overwhelm the United States led world.
But anything can happen as “The Death of Stalin” showed. Xi may force a reckless campaign anyway in the Western Pacific despite a decimated military leadership. The Chinese Night of the Long Knives may be only the final internal action before Xi lashes out in the Western Pacific. Anything to topple America before Trump returns.
All viewpoints are personal and do not reflect the viewpoints of any organization.