That mentality existed through the fall of the Iron Curtain. When I lived in Europe in the 80's, a friend of the family worked in military intelligence (an oxymoron, I know). He couldn't give a lot of details, but one of the classic stories he'd tell was about Soviet military training exercises--back in those days, they wouldn't even tell a convoy where they were going. Their standard operational procedure was that only the commander would know, and he'd be in the first vehicle in a convoy. Any time they needed to turn, they'd drop off a soldier at the intersection, and he'd then direct everyone else and get back into the last vehicle of the convoy. This would be repeated over and over until they reached their destination.
Now, when the intelligence guys wanted to find out what was going on, we'd simply ask the guy at the intersection. He, predictably, would say that he couldn't tell them, and they'd reply that of course they knew they weren't allowed to follow the convoy, and that to ensure they didn't, they had to know which way the convoy was going, so they could go a different direction and not get into trouble with their superiors.
With that impeccable logic, the soldier would generally point out where the convoy was headed, allowing the intelligence guys to speed off in that direction...
Enforcing by fiat from several thousand miles away.... geeze I wonder how that's going to look to the Chinese staff.
Having been there, my guess is that it won't be nearly as poorly perceived as you think. The Chinese have had several thousand years to get accustomed to that idea. It's quite ingrained by now.
Remember Darwin; building a better mousetrap merely results in smarter mice.