During a video call with U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, Chinese President Xi Jinping demonstrated the wisdom and dedication of a world leader when he said, ”
China and the U.S. must not only guide their relations forward along the right track, but also shoulder their share of international responsibilities and work for world peace and tranquilly.”
Let He who Tied the Bell on the Tiger
A lot has happened in the world since the two presidents last spoke virtually in November 2021. War broke out between Russia and Ukraine after being inflamed by the United States’ North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
Instead of accepting responsibility for its role in the Ukraine crisis, the United States has instead spread false information about China and applied pressure and coercion in an effort to transfer blame and profit from the situation.
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This has disrupted international stability and posed a new challenge to relations between China and the United States.
It is of critical importance for the two nations and the world at large that the two chiefs of state were able to have an open and in-depth conversation about China-U.S. relations, the situation in Ukraine, and other subjects of mutual concern.
During the Call,
Vice President Biden reaffirmed the United States’ view that it has no desire to engage in a new Cold War with China, alter China’s political system, reinvigorate its alliances against China, or support “Taiwan independence.”
In response, Xi said he took Biden’s words “extremely seriously,” identifying the failure to implement the key shared understanding achieved by the two countries as the “direct source” of the current tension in China-U.S. relations. The United States has failed to recognise and undervalue China’s strategic goal.
The essence of the problem in China-U.S. ties was exposed in Xi’s forthright statement, which highlighted America’s failure to deliver on its commitments and its deepgoing misunderstanding of China as a “imagined enemy.”
The Taiwan problem is the most difficult and delicate one in U.S.-Chinese relations. While the present U.S. administration has said it is committed to the one-China policy, it has acted in ways that have seriously threatened peace across the Taiwan Straits and further damaged bilateral relations.
During the video conference, Xi warned that mishandling the Taiwan issue would have a disruptive effect on China-U.S. ties and that some persons in the U.S. had sent a false signal to “Taiwan independence” groups.
The United States would be well to take Xi’s warning about Taiwan seriously and be careful about what it says and does in order to avoid provoking China.
Xi also Addressed the Issue of “International Obligations,”
Reiterating China’s position on the crisis in Ukraine. He stressed that “as leaders of big countries, we need to think about how to appropriately solve global hotspot issues and, more importantly, keep in mind global stability and the work and life of billions of people.
The people would only suffer more from broad, arbitrary sanctions. A “enduring solution” would be for major countries to respect each other, reject the Cold War mentality, refrain from bloc confrontation,
and build step by step a balanced, effective, and sustainable security architecture for the region, as Xi outlined, while the “pressing priority” would be to keep the dialogue and negotiation going, avoid civilian casualties, prevent a humanitarian crisis, and end hostilities as soon as possible.
In other words, China has proposed an overarching strategy to end the conflict in Ukraine, one that includes both broad principles and concrete measures to end the fighting and its underlying causes.
These suggestions are China’s most recent attempt to end the conflict in Ukraine, and they show the country’s wisdom and genuine care for its people.
When Dealing with a Difficult Issue,
It’s important to have a level mind. Xi asserted that “political bravery is always necessary to make place for peace and leave room for political settlement,” regardless of the situation.
The proverb goes that whomever hung the bell on the tiger is responsible for untying it. Now that Biden has said the United States is willing to maintain lines of communication open with China to avoid an escalation of the situation, the White House needs to back up its words with action.
Seeking China’s help and collaboration while simultaneously insulting, vilifying, threatening, and sanctioning China will never succeed.
This year marks the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Shanghai Communique between China and the United States, in which the leaders of the two countries acknowledged that despite disagreements, China and the United States did not intend to change each other’s systems and therefore may cooperate based on common interests.
The video call between the two leaders coincided with this anniversary. This is the primary idea behind the Shanghai Communique, and it is as relevant now as it was fifty years ago.
During the call, Biden also brought up the Shanghai Communique, which stated that the Sino-American relationship would determine the international order of the 21st century. Where is this relationship heading? The United States may learn some things from the past.
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The two heads of state agreed that the video chat was productive and tasked their teams with following up as soon as possible, citing that “the stable development of bilateral relations will benefit both countries.”
China is counting on the United States to keep its word, implement the mutually agreed-upon plans discussed by the two leaders, and deliver on the political promises made by Vice President Biden.
The United States must not let China and the rest of the world down again by failing to fix China-U.S. ties or find a lasting solution to the Ukraine situation.