Biden continues to insist that he is speaking openly “clearly and honestly” against President Xi. For example, his distaste for the authoritarian regime in China, his concerns about human rights in Xinjiang and Hong Kong and the pressure on Taiwan. This is part of Biden’s domestic mantra, to emphasize the style difference with his predecessor Trump. But he has also kept that promise during previous meetings.
Because, according to Biden, the competition with China is partly a systematic battle. “This is a struggle between democracy and authoritarianism in the 21st century,” he said shortly after taking office. “We have to prove that democracy works.” Biden sees this as America’s historical mandate: “Once an American president is silent on democracy and human rights, we will lose our legitimacy.”
China: We are not young anymore
The reporter continues Schord Dunn called: “Expectations are low, and inconsistencies are great on the eve of this first virtual meeting. The fact that there was already a talk seems to be the biggest gain at this point.”
After the two phone calls, the video call with Biden doesn’t look like a big step up the diplomatic ladder at first glance. But Party Chairman and President Xi Jinping has not left the People’s Republic of China since January 2020, when the coronavirus just spread. Nor did he exclude the G-20 and the subsequent climate summit in Glasgow. This meeting may not be called a summit, but at this point the visual contact between the two leaders is the highest that can be achieved.
There is clearly something to discuss. It’s a thorn in the Chinese side that the United States is patrolling and conducting military exercises in what they see as their backyard, the South China Sea. But the battle is mainly about Taiwan.
Last month, a record number of aircraft flew into the Taiwanese air defense zone. In an interview with CNN, the US president promised to intervene if China attacked Taiwan. China regards democratic Taiwan as a breakaway province that may need to be forcibly “reunited” with mainland China.
It is still not clear what the value of Biden’s promises in the event of a Chinese invasion, but people are angry in Beijing. In America, there are concerns about China’s growing nuclear arsenal, which Beijing sees as an urgent need to counterbalance Washington.
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