War is a race to the bottom, and if the bottom is hell, the US has long-held diplomatic relations there with its leaders. China has nothing to gain from such a war. The US, however, viewing the long game has calculated that by opposing China and containing her rise, she will preserve her hegemony and privileges around the world.
For the primary superpower and predominant military force in terms of technology and equipment. America is well suited to fight and win conventional engagements against all and any opponent. China’s best chance of giving them pause is to present the clear prospect of world war which will reach the US population at home.
This common understanding of mutually assured destruction is what preserved the peace with the USSR/Russia for decades. The underlying difficulty with this communication, however, is that the buying public of these potentially (to be nuked) nations will be turned off of buying Chinese made products. Which would result in containing China’s economic growth, and prolong the US’s economic monopoly. It’s a hard game that must have layers of struggle.
China must be prepared to fight and win this hybrid war with the West. I’m not sure exactly when the West will push for the advantage, but when they have completed their preparations and gathered as much overwhelming force as required to defeat China’s navy. They will instruct Taiwan to declare independence.
Then the ball will be on China’s side to respond… Unless China gets Russia involved, she will lose. (Russia has to be the messenger of nuclear annihilation and red lines, not China). The whole world is already used to this and this message will not change the status quo). Russia is currently being wooed by the US and offered some concessions to keep out of their business with China… Russia is an ally, but she will seek her own interests first, so this scenario is unpredictable…
China is catching up, but she is not ready for conventional war with the US as yet. The US knows this, so the window of opportunity is closing. China also understands its position and this is why it is working hard to modernize, train and develop its defenses. It will not be an easy fight, but it should become obvious to most that the US is psychopathic and very tolerant of death and destruction