The night view of Taipei on June 20, 2019. Photo: Xinhua
US President Donald Trump signing the “Taipei Act” into law and hours later communicating with China over containing the COVID-19 pandemic are deemed not contradictory, Chinese analysts say.
Although the White House is under rising pressure to hold back the worsening COVID-19 outbreak in the country, which may drive it to compromise for the time being, US government’ long-term strategy of “containing China” by playing the Taiwan card will not change, the analysts noted.
The double-dealing on the part of the White House has caused fierce criticism from vast Chinese people online, with could further poison cooperation and understanding between the two giant countries.
The “Taiwan Allies International Protection and Enhancement Initiative Act of 2019,” which Trump signed into law on Thursday at the White House, is aimed at “propping the international presence of the Taiwan island”, experts say.
Hours after signing the act, Trump was online talking with China’s top leader to discuss the pandemic control and he later tweeted “China has been through much & developed a strong understanding of the Virus… Much respect!”
“Don’t you think your arm is reaching too far? Could you please solve your own problem before messing others up?” a netizen commented on China’s Twitter-like Sina Weibo.
“The US never forgets its anti-China agenda even though its own people are reeling from the COVID-19 attack,” posted another Weibo user.
“Remember the country donated nothing when China was pummeled by the virus. Are they feeling embarrassed to support Taiwan’s secessionists and ask for our help at the same time?” another netizen said.
Chinese experts noted that Trump, a businessperson in essence, is prioritizing the upcoming 2020 presidential election and he attempts to gain supporters by signing the Act that was passed by the House in 2019.
Using the issue of Taiwan to contain China’s rise is a “zero-cost strategy for the US”, but can fool Taiwan’s politicians and bring about benefits for the US, as the move may jeopardize China’s sovereignty and shortcut China’s peaceful development, Song Zhongping, a Chinese military expert and TV commentator, told the Global Times on Saturday.
The US has a track record of passing Taiwan-related acts to stir up regional instability, such as the Taiwan Travel Act of 2018 and the Taiwan Assurance Act of 2019, Song said, adding such malicious tactics would likely continue.
Song also highlighted the White House may play the Taiwan card and pursue anti-China strategy to garner votes in the US elections, as the majority of Americans have never been to China and only learned information from biased media reports fused with anti-China narrative, he said.
In additional to souring diplomatic and economic relations between the two countries during the last years, the White House’s political posturing is also pushing people of the two countries further apart from each other, observers noted.
China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and The foreign affairs committee of the National People’s Congress on Friday expressed strong dissatisfaction and firm opposition to the US signing the act into law, which violated the one-China principle and consensus of the international community.