"Every perception is to some degree an act of creation, and every act of memory is to some degree an act of imagination."
-- Gerald Edelman, Second Nature: Brain Science and Human Knowledge
1 Phase 2, 1978 to 2013: The Deng and Deng Successors Phase of Gaining Strengths Through Economic Reforms and Opening Up Without Creating Threats to Other CountriesChapter 6: The Big Cycle of China and Its Currency2020-10-09Journal
At the same time increased threats from Vietnamese and Soviet activities appeared. In 1978 Vietnam and the Soviet Union signed an agreement to expand their military cooperation, which led to a Russian military buildup in Vietnam, and the Vietnamese government rounded up massive numbers of ethnic Chinese and put them into detention camps. As a principle, when there is weak and divided leadership, especially during leadership transitions, enemies see this as a time of vulnerability in which there is increased likelihood that they will make an attack of some sort. With the leadership transition going on in China and with the moves by Vietnam and the Soviets perceived as threatening, that was feared to be the case.