The international system has recently been in a state of uncertain and dangerous turbulence. This is reflected in the statements of leaders. In his speech at the Valdai Discussion Club, Russian President Putin said, "an uncertain and dangerous decade awaits us," while US President Biden emphasized, "a decade that will determine everything."

The system cannot overcome the "organic crisis" it has entered. This can be referred to as "an interregnum without hegemony" or, as previously said, "a dangerous decade."

But one thing is sure: the international system is at a historic turning point. Amid all this turmoil, Chinese President Xi Jinping's October congress speech warning against "dangerous storms" stood out.

In his speech at the opening of the 20th Party Congress, Xi Jinping emphasized the need for "self-confidence" in technology by warning that China is facing challenges from overseas countries and "dangerous storms."

Xi Jinping uses the metaphor of "dangerous storms" in many of speeches.

This statement appears to have been influenced by the United States National Security Strategy, which recently designated China as a "big threat" and a long-term challenge.

Xi Jinping mentioned about pressure on China on the world scene in his party congress speech. Although not expressly addressed in the speech, this issue was highlighted in the congress report.

Xi's consolidation of the party and state leadership structures and his stress on ideological purity might be interpreted as a foreshadowing of this uncertain future.

Recent developments on the Taiwan problem and the pressure and encirclement China is facing on the world scene indicate that China is shifting toward a more solid and long-term policy that eliminates uncertainty.

Collective leadership, founded on a constitutional basis following Mao's excessive centralization of power, was successfully enforced until the Hu Jintao era. However, Xi Jinping's elimination of term limits in 2018 produced an open-ended predicament.

There are several explanations for this tendency inside the CCP. The growing conflict with the United States has consolidated control among the Chinese leadership. Furthermore, China is closely monitoring the demise of the USSR, and the party is sensitive to any signals of weakness.

To put it another way, Xi is attempting to avoid the destiny of the Soviet Union under Gorbachev. The Chinese leadership regards the closing decades of the USSR as a lesson.

Xi Jinping acknowledged the tensions inside China's political institutions in his speech at the congress, claiming that the government had "eliminated severe concealed risks within the party." This demonstrates the Chinese leadership's sensitivity to indicators of weakness. The term "security" was used the most in Xi's address.

Of course, there is an emphasis on the regime's security, not merely the upheaval generated by rivalry with the US. Taiwan, China's most acute and constant national security problem, was also mentioned in the address. "Solving the Taiwan problem is in the hands of the Chinese people," Xi Jinping stated, adding, "China would never give up its right to use force, but will strive for a peaceful settlement."

Xi has already made explicit declarations before concerning Taiwan. "We must not allow this issue to be carried on from generation to generation," he remarked in 2019. Also to be remembered is the fact that China released a white paper on Taiwan in 2022.

The white paper concludes, "The historical aim of reuniting our nation must accomplish and will be accomplished." The solution of "one country, two systems" is also suggested in this white paper.

Xi Jinping's congressional address was significant, and compared to previous speeches, it clearly switched to a "security" focused plane. This suggests that in the future, China's focus will be on how to accomplish development and progress in a "secure" environment.

Xi Jinping now has complete and adequate authority over the state, party, and army.

The released congress report also demonstrates a solid commitment to modernizing the People's Liberation Army. This modernization has four main components: "the objective of a world-class army, the growth of theoretical military literature, the development of unmanned/intelligent combat capabilities, and the development of combat power."

According to the report, China would "build a robust strategic deterrence system." This is a strong indicator that China will beef up its nuclear arsenal.

On the other side, the study offers some intriguing remarks about Taiwan. The report of the 19th Party Congress did not include a declaration that China rejects "foreign involvement" in Taiwan-related topics. This new and special statement is included in this Congressional report.

Furthermore, the report's comment about Taiwan, "the strategic initiative for China's reunification will be intensified," implies that specific strategic calculations would be made and modeling would be done appropriately.

In conclusion, the Chinese leadership believes they face a complex, tumultuous and uncertain international system and must show strategic determination to adapt to it.

During this adaptation, China will likely turn to measures that reinforce national security in response to the uncertain nature of international security and adopt a more proactive approach to Taiwan.

Recent statements by Xi Jinping also indicate this. Xi Jinping's statement that China will comprehensively strengthen its preparations for war in response to the increasing instability and uncertainty of China's security is significant.

The concept of "security" is now starting to take precedence over development and growth for China. The acceptance of all leaders that they have entered a dangerous and uncertain period, the deepening competition with the US, and the emergence of an imbalanced "multi-polarity" are causing China to take a more urgent approach to ensure its security.

The era of China being primarily focused on economic development and growth has come to an end. In this uncertain time, security and preparation for potential war have become the new priorities.

Dr.Hüseyin Korkmaz. The author is a researcher focusing on China and geopolitics in the Asia, primarily related to the US-China relations.