On Friday, the Intelligence Community issued an update on foreign interference in the 2020 election. William R. Evanina, director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, said that China prefers Joe Biden, Russia prefers Donald Trump, and Iran prefers Biden but really wants internal division in the U.S. China’s preference for Biden makes sense, and Beijing has arguably become America’s greatest geopolitical rival.
As the Wuhan coronavirus has spread across the world thanks in part to China’s shenanigans, and Beijing has asserted control over Hong Kong and gotten into a scuffle with India, the U.S. is arguably entering another Cold War, this time with the Middle Kingdom. President Donald Trump has muscled America into a better trading position with China, and he inked a trade deal early this year. While Trump arguably praised Beijing and its Communist president, Xi Jinping, too much and too late, he has cracked down on the Communist threat since, while Joe Biden appears to be Xi’s best hope in November.
“We assess that China prefers that President Trump — whom Beijing sees as unpredictable — does not win reelection,” Evanina reported. “China has been expanding its influence efforts ahead of November 2020 to shape the policy environment in the United States” and “its public rhetoric over the past few months has grown increasingly critical of the current Administration’s COVID-19 response, closure of China’s Houston Consulate, and actions on other issues.”
China is the greatest threat
While Russia and Iran pose various threats to the United States, China has become America’s greatest rival and a menace to the world. Xi has territorial ambitions, seeks to dominate global markets, has weaponized the coronavirus pandemic, uses his government to enforce propaganda, attacks religious freedom, and imprisons religious and ethnic minorities in terrifying labor camps.
Thanks in large part to the heinous one-child policy, China has a surplus of young men and a deficit of young women. This adds to a desire for foreign aggression.
Beijing has indeed been flexing its muscles. China built floating islands in the South China Sea in order to claim naval territory. In May, Xi sent soldiers into disputed lands between China and India, sparking more than a month of skirmishes in a border war. Late last month, Beijing imposed “direct authoritarian rule” over Hong Kong, arguably violating the treaty by which China gained limited control over Hong Kong from Britain.
As for the coronavirus, the Chinese Communist Party lied to cover it up early on, and waited until after 5 million people had already left Wuhan before locking down the city at the center of the outbreak. The party also reportedly destroyed early samples of the virus and silenced doctors who tried to warn the world about it. A University of Southampton study found that if the Communist Party had enacted quarantine measures three weeks earlier, the coronavirus spread would have been reduced by 95 percent.
When the World Health Organization (WHO) tweeted that the coronavirus might transmit from person to person, the Chinese government told the WHO to remove that statement, and the WHO complied. China requested personal protective equipment (PPE) from across the world, and received 2.4 billion pieces. Later, when other countries asked China for PPE, China extorted them — only sending valuable medical aid if political leaders agreed to publicly praise Beijing. Chinese companies also sent faulty medical gear to European countries and to the U.S. Meanwhile, the Communist Party also prevented U.S. companies from shipping their own medical gear back home, where it is sorely needed.
The State of Missouri has already filed a lawsuit to hold China accountable, and there is a growing chorus of voices demanding the U.S. sue the Chinese Communist Party in an international court. China has even threatened U.S. senators by name who dared to call Beijing to account for its malfeasance. Americans want to see China held accountable.
China has also leveraged its position as the world’s most populous country to dominate many sectors of the global economy. The U.S. medical supply chain is terrifyingly reliant on Beijing, and China dominates the production of rare earth minerals, a critical sector for the energy economy, particularly green energy technologies.
The Communist Party has sent Chinese students to America’s top doctoral programs to gain access to university research labs. The Chinese have stolen U.S. intellectual property on the cutting edge of science and technology.
Yet arguably the worst aspect of China’s oppression involves its treatment of the Uyghur Muslim minority in Xinjiang. Beijing has allegedly imprisoned 1 million members of Muslim minority groups in what China defends as de-radicalization and retraining centers.
Human rights activists have compared the camps to prisons and worse, claiming that inmates are sentenced there with little due process. The Uyghurs (the largest Muslim minority targeted) and others are compelled to denounce their religion, language, and culture and to pledge allegiance to the Chinese Communist Party and President Xi Jinping. According to an Associated Press investigation, Uyghur women are forced to use birth control or undergo involuntary sterilizations.
Biden is weak on China
While Biden did rebuke Xi as a “thug” during a February debate and rightly condemned China’s aggression of Hong Kong and its oppression of the Uyghurs, he had pressed “enhanced cooperation” with Xi back in 2016.
The impeachment battle drew fresh attention to Joe’s son Hunter and his membership on the board of the corrupt Ukrainian gas company Burisma. Obama’s veep notoriously pressured Ukraine to fire a prosecutor looking into Burisma, threatening to revoke $1 billion in U.S. aid.
As it turns out, Hunter also raked in cash from lucrative business deals in China, just as Joe Biden went soft on the Chinese Communist Party’s aggression in the South China Sea. As of April, Hunter reportedly remains on the board of the Chinese company Bohai Harvest RST, an investment fund created with the help of the Communist Party-run Bank of China. He had pledged to divest from the company amid his father’s presidential campaign.
Biden’s liabilities on China extend beyond Hunter, however. As Townhall Editor Katie Pavlich pointed out, the former veep has failed to take Beijing seriously during the 2020 campaign cycle.
When Trump announced a ban on travel to and from China to mitigate the spread of coronavirus, Biden slammed him for it.
“We are in the midst of a crisis with the coronavirus. We need to lead the way with science — not Donald Trump’s record of hysteria, xenophobia, and fear-mongering. He is the worst possible person to lead our country through a global health emergency,” Biden said of Trump’s ban.
Biden has dismissed the global threat of China, downplaying its efforts to undermine the U.S. geographically, militarily, and economically.
“China is going to eat our lunch? Come on, man,” Biden said during an Iowa campaign stop last summer. “I mean, you know, they’re not bad folks, folks. But guess what? They’re not competition for us. The fact of the matter is we can do all we need to do without punishing anybody.”
Yet perhaps the greatest sign that Biden is unfit to challenge China is the despicable way he condemned Trump’s attempts to counter Chinese Communist propaganda regarding the origin of the coronavirus.
Beijing has insisted that the coronavirus originated in the U.S., not in Wuhan, China. To combat this ridiculous false narrative, Trump has branded it the “Chinese virus” or the “Wuhan virus,” just like legacy media outlets repeatedly did in the early days of the crisis. The Chinese Communist Party has accused Trump of using these terms to stoke racism, and both left-leaning media figures and the World Health Organization (WHO), which has repeatedly covered for China, rushed to repeat this charge.
Biden himself released a statement condemning Trump’s use of such terms.
“Unfortunately, Donald Trump and his Administration have failed to show almost any moral leadership when it comes to this issue. The casual racism and regular xenophobia that we have seen from Trump and this Administration is a national scourge,” Biden said in the statement.
Asian Americans have experienced harassment during the crisis, and any such incidents are disgusting and should be condemned by all. There is no evidence, however, that Trump’s efforts to counter Chinese Communist propaganda are responsible for these heinous attacks.
In March, Trump made it clear that the spread of the coronavirus is not the fault of Asian Americans.
“It is very important that we totally protect our Asian American community in the United States, and all around the world,” he tweeted. “They are amazing people, and the spreading of the Virus is NOT their fault in any way, shape, or form. They are working closely with us to get rid of it. WE WILL PREVAIL TOGETHER!”
It is very important that we totally protect our Asian American community in the United States, and all around the world. They are amazing people, and the spreading of the Virus….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 23, 2020
Trump pledged to protect Asian Americans, acknowledging that “great American citizens that happen to be of Asian heritage” have faced harassment. “I’m not going to let that happen.”
Trump is not perfect when it comes to China — he did praise Xi early on in the coronavirus crisis, partly because he had just inked a trade deal with Beijing — but he has a far stronger record than Biden. Trump’s statements and actions responding to China’s crackdown on Hong Kong, his pressuring TikTok to make a deal with Microsoft to separate the company from its Chinese owners, his pressure on China over the South China Sea, and his efforts to counter China’s push to dominate the 5G market are all considerable.
No wonder Beijing prefers the former vice president.
Tyler O’Neil is the author of Making Hate Pay: The Corruption of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Follow him on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.