Biden Warns China Should Expect “Extreme Competition” From US
During his wide-ranging interview with CBS televised just ahead of the Super Bowl Sunday night, President Biden said China is in for “extreme competition” from the United States under his leadership while still urging for the two economic powerhouses to establish a new relationship which avoids conflict.
“I know him pretty well,” Biden said in the “Face the Nation” interview while saying that when he next speaks to President Xi the two will have “a whole lot to talk about.” But Biden also vowed to hold Beijing to account for its severe human rights abuses – in reference to widespread reports of severe persecution and ‘reeducation camps’ targeting the ethnic Uighur Muslim minority.
“I’ve said to him all along that we need not have a conflict,” Biden said of his Chinese counterpart.
“But there’s going to be extreme competition . . . I’m not going to do it the way Trump did. We’re going to focus on international rules of the road.” Biden still made it clear he does not intend to go “softer” on China when compared to Trump. On this point, FT noted in its review of Biden’s latest comments:
Biden, who spent considerable time with Xi as vice-president to Barack Obama, said the Chinese leader was “very bright” but “doesn’t have a democratic, small D, bone in his body”. At one point during the Democratic primary race last year, Biden described him as a “thug”.
In the first three weeks of the administration, senior US officials have taken a hard rhetorical stance towards China over everything from its rights record in Xinjiang and Hong Kong to its military activity near Taiwan.
Here’s a clip of the key part of the latest CBS interview wherein Biden said:
“But there’s gonna be extreme competition. And I’m not going to do it the way he knows. And that’s because he’s sending signals as well. I’m not gonna do it the way Trump did. We’re gonna focus on international rules of the road.”
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) February 7, 2021
Indeed based on the latest statements on China out of Antony Blinken, the White House plans to continue Trump’s pressure campaign despite Biden’s assertion he’ll go about it differently.
Biden’s claim is that unlike Trump, he’ll keep a “tough” stance on China but in a way that focuses on the “international rules of the road” – though it’s unclear precisely what this vague statement means.
Mon, 02/08/2021 – 20:00