President Macron of France, having realized that Europe is “mortal,” has assumed the task of resuscitating it. Yet a number of his proposals and tactics, including his hosting of Xi Jinping in Paris next week — Mr. X’s first European visit in five years — might rather hasten Europe’s undue demise. Some also raise doubts over France’s reliability as an American ally, particularly in matters concerning Communist China.

In his rendezvous with Mr. Xi, President Macron is expected to broach matters of the Middle East, climate, and Chinese investment in France’s electric-vehicle sector, an area he is eager to expand. He is also expected to urge Mr. Xi to leverage his influence to pressure President Putin to end his war in Ukraine. Should the grandeur of the Élysée prove inadequate for the task, Mr. Macron seems to hope a more intimate setting might help.

Following a formal state dinner on May 6, the French president will accompany Mr. Xi to the Pyrenees’s Pic du Midi, where he passed childhood summers with his grandmother. The gambit is as much Freudian as it is perplexing. Does Mr. Macron expect the high altitude and rarified air to dissuade Mr. Xi of his pursuit of a new world order? Does Mr. Macron grasp the reality of a Sino-Russian alliance? Or does he share some of Mr. Xi’s vision?

Thehe last question bears asking. Surely on Ukraine, the French president must by now realize that Beijing’s position aligns with Moscow’s, not Paris’s or the West’s. Since early 2023, China’s backing for Russia’s military manufacturing and its supply of military vehicles, drones, and satellite imagery has surged. A conflict-ridden, structurally weakened Europe would be fertile ground for Beijing to advance its political aims. 

Beijing, too, appears poised to do so. Its 12-point “peace plan,” published last year, stresses its readiness to “support” Europe’s “post-conflict reconstruction.” A similar point was reiterated by Beijing’s attaché to Paris earlier this week. “Arrangements for the post-war European security architecture” are being made, he told Chinese journalists. Russia’s foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, has praised the plans as the most reasonable to date.