Originally Posted by BenKenobi
The Mandarin was a relatively obscure character and was basically just propaganda against communist China. The film makers have had a hard time figuring out what to do with him from the start and the movie cleverly acknowledges this and makes a comment on how we make "boogie-men" to influence public opinions. Plus lets be real, despite being Iron Mans Arch Nemesis in the public eye he's not even a forth as popular as even anyone of Spider-Mans B List enemies.
I seem to recall it being established that Mandarin was NOT a communist - that the Chinese government feared him but maintained an uneasy alliance with him.