Links for Monday, July 27, 2020

Notable China news from around the web.


More important China news and analysis from around the web:

Japan is becoming increasingly alarmed by China’s “more belligerent policy” towards its neighbors, the New York Times reports. One academic did not mince words:

China’s efforts to dominate the South China Sea, for example, are “one step toward kicking out the Western elements from their sphere of influence, which they have been dreaming of for the past century and a half,” said Kunihiko Miyake, a former Japanese diplomat who is now teaching at Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto.

“Their nationalistic ambition will not end,” he said. “I am very concerned, and nobody can stop it, as they couldn’t stop us in Manchuria in the 1930s,” Mr. Miyake said, referring to Japan’s invasion of that region of eastern China.

“At that time, the more pressure we had, the more adamant and arrogant and self-assertive we became, because we were too nationalistic and too undemocratic, and that was our destiny,” Mr. Miyake said. “China is following the same path.”

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is set to cynically invoke China to argue against antitrust legislation that the U.S. Congress may be considering, Bloomberg reports. “Zuckerberg plans to portray his company as an American success story in a competitive and unpredictable market, now threatened by the rise of Chinese social media apps around the world — and increasingly, at home, with the popularity of TikTok.”

Mark Zuckerberg has given up on trying to get Facebook into China, according to a speech the CEO gave at Georgetown University in October that spun his platform as a values-driven free speech defender. The next logical step is a (perhaps justified) lobbying campaign against TikTok, the only Chinese-made app that has won a significant following among young Americans.  

“An ideological struggle is under way between Beijing and free societies, and the Trump administration is on the wrong side,” writes Thomas Wright, Senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, in the Atlantic. Wright explains:

[Secretary of State Mike Pompeo] says the U.S. will organize the free world, while alienating and undermining the free world; he extols democracy, while aiding and abetting its destruction at home; and he praises the Chinese people, while generalizing about the ill intent of Chinese students who want to come to America.

Pompeo is also ultra-loyal to a president who cares not one whit for democracy, dissidents, freedom, or transparency overseas.

Richard Haass, President of the Council on Foreign Relations, also has a response to the recent anti-China polemic of Mike Pompeo: What Mike Pompeo doesn’t understand about China, Richard Nixon and U.S. foreign policy / Washington Post (porous paywall)

Other recently published, worthwhile reads on the state of U.S.-China relations: