Pence speech shows Washington's tougher policy on China

Source:Global Times Published: 2018/10/5 13:50:31

In a speech at the Hudson Institute on Thursday, US Vice President Mike Pence launched a broad attack against Beijing. He slandered China by claiming that China is meddling in the US midterm elections. It was the first time that a US vice president targeted China so sharply in a speech since 1972.  

Pence criticized China's trade policies, the Chinese military expenditure, which he claimed is as much as the rest of Asia combined and China's intentions to "militarize the South China Sea." He accused China of setting up an unparalleled surveillance state and launching religious persecutions. He also blamed China's foreign investment and Taiwan policies. "We will not be intimated; we will not stand down," the vice president said.  

Pence ramped up US accusations that China is interfering in the free download stereoscopic player 3d full cracks, claiming that Russian interference in US elections "pales in comparison" with Chinese meddling. He echoed a similar claim made by US President Donald Trump at the UN General Assembly last week, but his evidence was pale and ridiculous. He only listed hearsay evidence. The Guardian reported he "has yet to provide any supporting evidence." Shortly before Pence's remarks, US Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen said she hasn't seen signs that China seeks to interfere in the midterm elections by targeting the election infrastructure.  

Pence's speech is intended to help the Republicans and the president win elections. It aims to help Trump get rid of Russiagate by shifting attention from Russian interference to Chinese meddling, which not only tallies with Washington's current China policy but also could mobilize Americans' hatred against foreign intervention to win votes for Republicans. Except for slogans, it's noteworthy that Pence didn't put forward the countermeasures the US may introduce.   

Pence made the speech primarily for the midterm elections, and placed more focus on swaying public opinion. However, since China didn't do anything improper, accusing China as a strategic rival will not work out. The US-launched trade war is a brutal and lose-lose move that has caused huge controversy. What can the US do with China's normal commercial behavior? The US accuses China of a variety of things taking place around China, but it dare not push the latter too hard out of fear of China's countermeasures.

As Pence's aggressive speech shows, the US is taking a far tougher line on China. What matters most now is how China responds.

We believe that China should first and foremost stay poised and avoid being misled by the aggressiveness of the US government and Congress. China needs to steadfastly protect its legitimate rights and interests against US moves and stay away from emotionally-motivated disputes. Whatever Washington labels China, we must make an objective and fact-based strategic judgment of the US on the basis of current bilateral relations, rather than what US politicians say.

Some American politicians hope to make China an enemy the way they did to the Soviet Union to help cement their vested interests. But China and the US cannot be defined as friend or foe. Sino-US relations are the aggregate of social connections of the two countries that won't be severed easily. 

In the face of growing anti-China rhetoric by US politicians, China has to continue opening up and strike back in the trade war while maintaining cooperation with the US. In particular, we need to limit our issues with the US to the two sides and prevent tensions from affecting China's relations with the entire West.

More importantly, we have to prevent tensions between China and the US from having a negative effect on our domestic policy and refrain from becoming conservative internally over the deterioration in the external environment. In other words, we cannot deviate from our path, and become extremely vigilance against a less open and more radical US from penetrating China. This will be a major test for Chinese society.

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