China showed in its Sept. 3 military parade that it wants to be viewed not just as an economic power but as a major military and diplomatic player as well. And, while it trumpeted its desire for peace, the display of its military prowess is bound to spur concern in other capitals.

China has sought to seize the moral high ground on issues such as the refugee crisis in Europe, castigating Washington for triggering instability and civil wars through its policy of regime change in the Middle East.

In Asia, which China sees as its own backyard, it has fanned the flames of animosity toward Japan, emphasizing atrocities committed in the 1930s and 1940s.