The 45th President: One In A Series Looking Back At The Trump Presidency
President Trumps bet that he could tame Chinas rise through a mix of personal charisma and dealmaking prowess has faltered in the fourth year of his presidency giving way to the most hostile period of bilateral relations in decades and a pitched conflict that could endure for a generation.
Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping who toasted their first meeting at Mar-a-Lago in 2017 over what Trump boasted was the most beautiful piece of chocolate cake have not spoken since March. Tensions over the coronavirus pandemic have exposed Trumps claims of friendship with Xi, the most ruthless leader since Mao Zedong, as expedient and hollow.
Trump was on the precipice of declaring victory with his China strategy as recently as January, when he hosted senior Communist Party officials in a White House celebration of a modest trade pact. But the president has since shifted to attacking Beijing as an even greater danger than he suggested in 2016, when he said China had been allowed to rape our country on the march to becoming an economic powerhouse.
In a recorded address to the U.N. General Assembly in September from the White Houses Diplomatic Reception Room, Trump declared that, 75 years after World War II, fellow nations were again waging a great global struggle, this time against the invisible enemy the China virus.
We must hold accountable the nation which unleashed this plague onto the world: China, he said.
How Will China Respond
The short answer is, we do not know. Geng Shuang, at Chinas foreign ministry, told reporters to stay tuned about any retaliation.
In a statement shortly after the tariff increase came into effect, Chinas commerce ministry said it deeply regrets the need to take necessary countermeasures.
What is clear is that Beijing will not be able to impose reciprocal tariffs, because Chinas imports from the US are less than $200bn. But it does have other options, including raising existing tariffs, restricting US companies in China and making it tougher for Americans to qualify for visas.
That said, China has also expressed hope both sides could reach an agreement.
Hong Kong Tour Bus Is Just What The Doctor Ordered For Insomniacs
The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on Tuesday defended in the last weeks of the Trump administration as part of his responsibilities adding that he was certain former President Donald Trump did not intend to launch an attack on China.
Gen. Mark Milley confirmed during a Senate Armed Service Committee hearing that he called Gen. Li Zuocheng of the Peoples Liberation Army twice once on Oct. 30 before the presidential election and once on Jan. 8, two days after the Capitol riot.
Peril, the new book by Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Robert Costa, claimed Milley reached out to Li to assure him that Trump was not planning on launching an attack, and that he would warn China if that were the case.
Milley told the senators that the calls to China were made after the Department of Defense picked up intelligence leading them to believe the Chinese were worried about an attack on them by the United States.
I know, I am certain, that President Trump did not intend to attack the Chinese, and it was my direct responsibility by the secretary to convey that intent to the Chinese, Milley said.
The chairman also said other members of the Trump administration were aware of those calls to Li.
Eight people sat in his call in October and 11 sat in on the January call.
I think thered be a period of increased tension, indicators and warnings and I think thered be an exchange of various communications at all levels Milley began before Sullivan cut him off.
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What Has Donald Trump Done
The US president has ratcheted up existing import tariffs of 10% on certain Chinese goods sold in the US to 25%.
The increase came into effect on Friday on a long list of products shipped after 12.01am EDT.
There was no breakthrough in talks in Washington between the US trade representative, Robert Lighthizer, and the Chinese vice-premier Liu He before the midnight deadline.
Trump has warned 25% tariffs could be imposed on a further $325bn of goods in future, which would mean all Chinese imports being covered by tariffs.
What Happened When Trump Tried To Stop Us Funding For The Communist Chinese Wuhan Lab
Dated: June 18, 2021
Listen to top scientists and editors from esteemed medical journals and you cant help but conclude there is such a thing as a scientific establishment. And its been as corrupted by politics and misinformation as many in politics and the media.
In my 2017 investigation into Fake Science, Dr. Marcia Angell, the first woman to serve as Editor-in-Chief of the New England Journal of Medicine, explained why she says a large percentage of published studies are not to be believed.
I came to the New England Journal of Medicine in 1979, says Angell. Starting about then was when you saw the drug companies assert more and more control until finally they over the next couple of decades, they began to treat the researchers as hired hands. They would design the research themselves. You know you can do a lot of mischief in how you design a trial. Or we’ll test this drug and we’ll tell you whether it can be published or not, and so if it’s a positive study, it’s published if it’s a negative study, it’ll never see the light of day.”
That sentiment is shared by Dr. Richard Horton, Editor-in-Chief of the British journal Lancet. In 2015, he wrote a scathing editorial saying, “Much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue science has taken a turn towards darkness.
The case against science is straightforward: much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue.
Dr. Richard Horton, Editor-in-Chief, Lancet
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Biden Backs Top General Milley After Reported ‘secret’ Calls With China
WASHINGTON -President Joe Biden on Wednesday threw his support behind the top U.S. military officer, Mark Milley, a day after a new book said he went around civilian leaders to place secret calls to his Chinese counterpart over concerns about then-President Donald Trump.
Milley’s office pushed back against the report in the book, saying the calls he made as chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff were coordinated within the Pentagon and across the U.S. government.
According to excerpts of the book, Milley secretly called General Li Zuocheng of the Peoples Liberation Army twice in the final months of the Trump administration to say the U.S. government was stable. Milley reportedly told Li that the United States was not going to attack China and, if there were to be an attack, he would alert him ahead of time.
The excerpts were reported by the Washington Post on Tuesday.
The calls raised concerns that Milley may have subverted civilian control, but Biden defended him on Wednesday.
“I have great confidence in General Milley,” Biden said.
Colonel Dave Butler, a spokesman for Milley, said Milley’s calls with Chinese officials and others in October and January were in line with his responsibility to “maintain strategic stability.”
He did not directly dispute the report on the contents of the calls.
The Pentagon strongly backed Milley as well.
In a statement on Tuesday, Trump called the story “fabricated.” If it was true, he said, Milley should be tried for treason.
General Milley Says Trump Officials Knew Of Calls To China
General Mark Milley made two calls, one before, one after 2020 election because he thought China feared Trump would order a US attack.
The top United States general said he was not trying to undermine former President Donald Trump by placing calls to his Chinese counterpart after US intelligence signalled China feared Trump could order a US military attack.
Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley told Congress on Tuesday that two calls he made to General Li Zuocheng of the Peoples Liberation Army were to assure China that the US was not going to suddenly go to war.
I know, I am certain that President Trump did not intend to attack the Chinese, General Milley testified to the Senate Armed Services Committee.
It was my directed responsibility by the secretary to convey that intent to the Chinese, Milley said.
The top US general had come under criticism including calls to resign after news of the in mid-September after being documented in a book. Reports at the time characterised the calls as secret.
The two phone calls from Milley to General Li, the top commander of the Peoples Liberation Army, occurred on October 30, 2020, and January 8, 2021. They were conducted in coordination with then-Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and acting Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller, Milley told Congress.
At no time was I attempting to change or influence the process, usurp authority or insert myself in the chain of command, Milley said.
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Trumps Foreign Policy Moments
Donald J. Trumps presidency marked a profound departure from U.S. leadership in areas such as trade and diplomacy, as well as an across-the-board toughening of immigration policies.
In his inaugural address, President Donald J. Trump announces an America First approach to foreign policy and trade, which centers on reducing U.S. trade deficits and rebalancing burden sharing within alliances. Trump promises to unite the civilized world against radical Islamic terrorism and emphasizes that it is the right of all nations to put their own interests first.
Trump directs the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to withdraw the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a twelve-country, Asia-focused trade agreement the United States had championed under the Barack Obama administration.
The president signs an executive order banning nationals of six Muslim-majority countries from traveling to the United States for ninety days. The order, later amended to include an additional two countries, also indefinitely freezes refugee intake from Syria. Days later, a federal judge in Washington State blocks part of the order, beginning a series of judicial challenges. That same week, Trump signs two other executive orders concerning immigration. One directs federal funds to the construction of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, and the other bars so-called sanctuary cities from receiving federal grants.
Here Are The Reasons For Trump’s Economic War With China
On Friday the US president hereby ordered companies to halt business with China, among other attacks how did we get here?
Even by Donald Trumps standards his Twitter rant attacking China on Friday was extraordinary. In a series of outbursts Trump hereby ordered US companies to stop doing business with China, accused the country of killing 100,000 Americans a year with imported fentanyl and stealing hundred of billions in intellectual property.
The attack marked a new low in Sino-US relations and looks certain to escalate a trade war already worrying investors, manufacturers and economists who are concerned that the dispute between the two economic superpowers could trigger a recession.
Not so long ago Trump called Chinas president, Xi Jinping, a good friend. Now he is an enemy. How did we get here?
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China Fills Vacuums Left By Trump
In international forums, the withdrawal of American influence and personnel created a vacuum that China gladly filled. The World Health Organization is the most relevant example of this phenomenon. Trump has thumbed his nose at Americas traditional leading role in fighting potential pandemics, consistently fighting for massive cuts to the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention and the State Department. When the American seat on the WHO governing board became available, Trump just didnt fill it. The WHO saw the writing on the wall, and when Beijing began to offer support , the group unsurprisingly accepted the offer of a closer relationship.
Similarly, when Trump announced the United States would withdraw all funding for the United Nations Population Fund, Xi committed to funding the establishment of 100 centers for maternal and child health in the developing world.
Finally, Trumps antipathy for human rights and democracy leadership, and general slobbering over the worlds strongman dictators, have squelched the hopes of Chinese minority groups and dissidents. Trump was tepid at best in his support of pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong and has turned a blind eye to the detention and persecution of Uighur Muslims. This has facilitated Xis ascendance to quasi-dictator-for-life status.
Chris Murphy is a Democratic senator from Connecticut. Follow him on Twitter: @ChrisMurphyCT
Xi Jinping Would Never Be Dictated To
The President of China is still remembered in the mountain village of Liangjiahe.
“Back then it was very poor around here we had to eat leaves. He was very skinny,” a villager once told ITN news.
Poverty in China was incredibly high back in the 1960s and 1970s and about 90 per cent of the population remained in poverty up until the 1990s.
A big reason for that was China opening up and making trade deals, which let foreign companies into the country and gave China access to lucrative foreign consumer markets.
But Mr Trump has been right when he has said China does not abide by the rules of some of those trade deals.
Other nations have long complained China has allowed intellectual property to be stolen by Chinese firms, and many have accused the Chinese Government of currency manipulation, which keeps its currency artificially low.
But of all China’s recent leaders, Mr Xi was probably the least likely to bend to this international pressure. He took China’s scepticism of the liberal international order and went further he wanted to confront it.
As President, he wanted to enforce China’s claim over the South China Sea, bring the autonomous territory of Hong Kong under greater control and even to accomplish the long-held Chinese goal of absorbing Taiwan.
Mr Xi was not going to be dictated to on trade by a US president.
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He Has Poured Praise On Xi
Since arriving in Beijing, Mr Trump has been fulsome in his praise for the Chinese leader, saying at one point: “You are a very special man.”
He has also enthusiastically thanked Mr Xi for his hospitality in several tweets.
President Xi, thank you for such an incredible welcome ceremony. It was a truly memorable and impressive display! ð¸
Donald J. Trump
Looking forward to a full day of meetings with President Xi and our delegations tomorrow. THANK YOU for the beautiful welcome China! Melania and I will never forget it!
Donald J. Trump
Mr Trump flew into Beijing on Wednesday and was greeted with great pomp and ceremony, in what was billed as a “state visit-plus”.
He has tweeted several times since arriving in China – where Twitter is banned. But a White House official told reporters that he would “tweet whatever he wants”.
As part of his Asia trip Mr Trump has already visited South Korea and Japan, and will go on to Vietnam and the Philippines later in the week.