“The first pressing issue facing us is living space. This is the biggest focus of the revitalization of the Chinese race. In my last speech, I said that the fight over basic living resources (including land and ocean) is the source of the vast majority of wars in history. This may change in the information age, but not fundamentally. Our per capita resources are much less than those of Germany’s back then. In addition, economic development in the last twenty-plus years had a negative impact, and climates are rapidly changing for the worse. Our resources are in very short supply. The environment is severely polluted, especially that of soil, water, and air. Not only our ability to sustain and develop our race, but even its survival is gravely threatened, to a degree much greater than faced Germany back then Anybody who has been to Western countries knows that their living space is much better than ours. They have forests alongside the highways, while we hardly have any trees by our streets. Their sky is often blue with white clouds, while our sky is covered with a layer of dark haze. Their tap water is clean enough for drinking, while even our ground water is so polluted that it can’t be drunk without filtering. They have few people in the streets, and two or three people can occupy a small residential building; in contrast our streets are always crawling with people, and several people have to share one room.
Many years ago, there was a book titled Yellow Catastrophes. It said that, due to our following the American style of consumption, our limited resources would no longer support the population and society would collapse once our population reaches 1.3 billion. Now our population has already exceeded this limit, and we are now relying on imports to sustain our nation. It’s not that we haven’t paid attention to this issue. The Ministry of Land Resources is specialized in this issue. But we must understand that the term ‘living space’ (lebenstraum) is too closely related to Nazi Germany.
The reason we don’t want to discuss this too openly is to avoid the West’s association of us with Nazi Germany, which could in turn reinforce the view that China is a threat. Therefore, in our emphasis on He Xin’s new theory, ‘Human Rights are just living rights’ we only talk about ‘living’ but not ‘space’ so as to avoid using the term ‘living space.’ From the perspective of history, the reason that China is faced with the issue of living space is because Western countries have developed ahead of Eastern countries. Western countries established colonies all around the world, therefore giving themselves an advantage on the issue of living space. To solve this problem, we must lead the Chinese people outside of China, so that they can develop outside of China.
Would the United States allow us to go out to gain new living space? First, if the United States is firm in blocking us, it is hard for us to do anything significant to Taiwan and some other countries! Second, even if we could snatch some land from Taiwan, Vietnam, India, or even Japan, how much more living space can we get? Very trivial! Only countries like the United States, Canada and Australia have the vast land to serve our need for mass colonization.” – Chi Haotian, Vice-Chairman of China’s, Military Commission, in a speech given in 2005