President Donald Trump appears to have underestimated and miscalculated his Chinese counterparts when it comes to negotiating a trade deal with the large manufacturing giant.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the U.S. initially tried to appeal to President Xi Jinping’s “nationalistic tendencies” on international property theft. The Trump team tried to paint it as a strange admission that the Chinese would need to steal U.S. technology. It didn’t do anything to move the needle.
“The Trump administration believed it had an agreement that included a satisfactory level of enforcement should the Chinese record not improve,” The Journal reported.
“Not tiger teeth, but real enough to make a deal,” one of the people tracking the talks explained.
To make matters worse, the threats Trump tried weren’t taken seriously by the Chinese, who believed he was “bluffing.”