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Biden Claims Thaw in US-China Relations Imminent, China Pops That Balloon

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After President Biden recently pledged that US-China relations will “thaw very soon,” an unnamed Chinese diplomat countered to NBC News that “[t]he bilateral relationship has once again encountered a freeze.” Despite President Biden shrugging off the recent spy balloon incident as a “silly balloon,” Chinese officials have expressed continued concernabout the ongoing FBI investigation into the matter. Additionally, China is concerned about the publicization of its covert police stations around the world, which the above unnamed Chinese diplomat called “false accusations.”

But there are many more obstacles preventing a thaw than spy balloons and covert police stations. Namely, China is continuing its propaganda campaign that the US is antagonistic and that it is the US that must take initiative in conceding to a long list of China’s “core interests.” China also outright rejects the G7, EU, and US diplomatic olive branch of pursuing relations with China through “de-risking” (instead of the harsher “de-linking” or “de-coupling”), calling such a framework racist and incompatible with the global economy.

China Continues to Accuse the US of Instigating Poor Relations

Despite the wishful thinking of some, China itself will not allow a thaw in relations as it continues to accuse the United States of being toxic, antagonistic, and malevolent towards China. “Hawkish Washington decision-makers” are “warmongers” that view US-China relations with “zero-sum paranoia” and engage in “toxic demagoguery,” according to Xinhua. Mao Ning, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson, questioned the “sincerity and significance” of existing communications between China and the United States, as the US is “us[ing] any means to suppress and contain China and impose sanctions [which Ning later clarified as “illegal” and “unilateral”] on Chinese officials and enterprises,” according to Global Times. According to “a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman” as cited by China Daily, “communication for communication’s sake will be of little help, because Beijing is frustrated that Washington is on the one hand calling for communication, while on the other hand trying to suppress China by foul means.”

China Continues to Insist that the US Take Initiative in Mending Fences

According to the state-run press in China, it is the United States that must take the initiative in bringing about better US-China relations. Ning stated that it was up to the US to lift sanctions and create favorable conditions for better US-China relations, according to Global Times. According to that same article, “some experts” believe that “…the necessary conditions for US-China relations to ‘thaw’ is Washington respecting Beijing’s core interests and fulfilling its commitment instead of ‘saying one thing and doing another.’” According to a Chinese academic, as quoted by Global Times, “if Washington really wants to see a ‘thaw’ in US-China relations, it should stop provoking China on the Taiwan question, remove unilateral tariffs on Chinese products, lift sanctions on Chinese institutions, and reduce obstacles for people-to-people exchanges.”

China Rejects “De-Risking” Framework for a China-West Détente  

According to Global Times, China will not entertain the seemingly moderate G7/EU/US’ “de-risk, not decouple” economic approach to China, deriding it as a “newly fashionable term.” In a recent visit to Berlin, Chinese foreign minister Qin Gang expressly rejected the “de-risking” model. Gang stated that China offers “opportunities, cooperation, stability and reassurance rather than crisis, confrontation, turbulence and risks,” and that “de-risking” is essentially “phasing out opportunities, cooperation, stability, and development,” according to China Daily. Another China Dailyarticle suggested that such an approach is racist, calling it “de-[S]inicization in the name of de-risking.” The same article also expressed wariness that de-risking “may lead to interference with the market mechanism or even a deviation from market economy rules,” a laughable concern coming from a state-run newspaper of Communist China.

While some in the Biden administration, including the president himself, appear to believe that US-China relations are on the mend, Chinese propaganda and statements from Chinese officials and academics are evidence to the opposite. The ball is in China’s court, not the US, to de-escalate tensions.

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New documents show China trying to establish ‘satellite state’ in Caribbean

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China has been “exploiting a fragile security environment and taking advantage of the region’s need for economic investment to gain influence and advance its malign agenda” in a move that challenges U.S. hegemony in the Americas, U.S. Southern Command Comm. General Laura Richardson recently told Congress in written testimony.

The Caribbean island nation of Antigua and Barbuda, located about 220 miles from the U.S. Virgin Islands, is where China is planning to establish a special Chinese-run economic zone, according to documents reviewed by Newsweek

Just The News  reports that per the documents, the area will have its own customs and immigration facilities, a shipping port and it will even issue passports. China will also establish different kinds of businesses that will specialize in things from facial surgery to virology, the latter of which is closely associated with the research in Wuhan that is the suspected source of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A spokesperson for SOUTHCOM said that the U.S. military is “aware that China may use its commercial and diplomatic presence for military purposes. In Asia, Africa and the Middle East, China has already abused commercial agreements at host-country ports for military aims; our concern is they may do the same in this region.”

More than two-thirds of the 31 nations under SOUTHCOM’s responsibility have signed onto China’s belt-and-road initiative, which is Beijing’s program to lend money to developing nations to use for infrastructure projects, according to Just The News.

Several nations have had problems with repaying such loans, resulting in Beijing seizing the country’s assets. For example, Sri Lanka struggled to pay back Beijing in 2017 and instead signed off the rights to a strategic port, according to Foreign Policy.

Rep. Eric Burlison, R-Mo., a member of the House Oversight Committee proving China’s incursion inside the U.S. sphere of influence, told Just the News on Monday night that Beijing’s aggression in the Caribbean reminded him of the Soviet’s intervention in Fidel Castro’s Cuba more than a half century earlier.

“It reminds me of Russia’s involvement in Cuba, just 220 miles off the shore of the US Virgin Islands. We have Antigua. It used to be considered the United States back yard. Unfortunately, today, it’s China’s front yard,” Burlison told the “Just the News, No Noise television show. “And China has used the united front to enter into loan agreements and contracts to create trade zones within Antigua in order to gain a foothold into the Caribbean.”

“And this is just part of their efforts around the globe, whether it’s in African countries or Laos. They’re they’re creating a network to try to undermine the U.S. dollar and try to end run around some of our tariffs and other programs,” he warned.

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