Beijing (Analysis) — Over the weekend, China took to its state-run media to make clear its position on a number of areas as Donald Trump settles into the White House — even going so far as to call American-style democracy a “kidnapped” system under the control of self-interested capitalists.
“Western style democracy used to be a recognized power in history to drive social development,” China said in an editorial published by the People’s Daily. “But now it has reached its limits. Democracy is already kidnapped by the capitals and has become the weapon for capitalists to chase profits.”
As highlighted by the International Business Times, the publication “devoted an entire page in its Sunday edition to criticize democracy, quoting poetry by former Chairman Mao Zedong urging people to ‘range far your eyes over long vistas,’ and claiming that with the end of capitalism, communism will rise as the victor.”
Pulling no punches, the state-run outlet cited “the emergence of capitalism’s social crisis” the “most updated evidence to show the superiority of socialism and Marxism.”
Regarding President Trump’s possible establishing of tariffs on Chinese goods, as he’s consistently suggested he may do, Xinhau — China’s official news agency — urged the U.S. leader to soften his protectionist policies:
“Among all his alternatives, the least desirable for Trump is to act on his previous threats to slap punitive tariffs on his country’s largest trading partner and label China a ‘currency manipulator’ as protectionism only stirs up retaliation. It is highly hoped that the Trump administration could take the interests of its country and the world as a whole into account, and starting aiming for win-win cooperation with China as soon as possible.”
What China is saying, essentially, is that it’s time for the United States, under the guidance of President Donald Trump, to embrace the “One China” policy it’s seeking to establish in Southeast Asia and to back away from nationalistic rhetoric that could further damage U.S.-China relations in the long-term.
The relevance of the One China policy is, perhaps, nowhere more currently on display than on the issue of Taiwan, an independent nation that China views as a breakaway province. Calling the policy the “political foundation” of the future U.S.-Chinese relationship, foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying reiterated at a press briefing Monday that China is holding firm on its claims of sovereignty in the region:
“We urge the new administration to fully understand the high sensitivity of the Taiwan issue and to continue pursuing the one China policy.”
This position extends to the hotly disputed South China Sea debate, says Hua, which sees China claiming near all-encompassing territorial rights to those waters. Only time will tell if President Trump will agree to respect the One China policy, though it’s difficult to argue the “sensitivity” sought by the Chinese spokeswoman is a trait the new American president is known for.
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