According to a report from Politico, Chinese diplomats have been unleashed, as well as urged, to attack Donald Trump’s administration and the U.S. in general via social media like Twitter — turning the president’s favorite social media platform back on him.
“The tactic comes as China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi has reportedly urged his diplomats to adopt a ‘fighting spirit,’ which has led to Chinese diplomat Lijian Zhao to describe “America as ‘unjust, ‘inhumane’ and ‘hypocritical.’ He’s gone so far as to slam neighborhood segregation in Washington, D.C., and assert that ‘racial discrimination, gun violence, violent law enforcement are chronic diseases deeply rooted in U.S. society,” Politico reports.
“Zhao is the most glaring example of a new trend in Chinese diplomacy: using social media, mainly Twitter, in an aggressive, decidedly undiplomatic manner. He and other Chinese officials are swinging in particular at the U.S., which under President Donald Trump — himself famous for mean tweets — has taken a combative stance toward the ruling Chinese Communist Party,” Politico’s Nahal Toosi wrote.
Writing, “Trump administration officials are tracking the shifting Chinese approach online. They stress, though, that the change is more about tone than substantive positioning on issues,” Toosi explains, “U.S. officials are wary of getting into a Twitter war with Beijing. When it comes to the Chinese diplomatic attacks online.”
“We’re going to answer by effectively explaining our position within a framework that’s very measured and reasonable, and we’ll see how they respond,” stated one Trump insider.
Not everyone in the Trump administration is taking the attacks lying down.
“In a speech at the Hudson Institute in late October, [Secretary of State Mike] Pompeo took a shot at China’s information strategy. He said that Chinese state-run media and government spokespeople are ‘routinely maligning American intentions and policy objectives.’ But Pompeo also indicated that the Chinese approach has worked overtime because the U.S. has been slow to wake up to the dangers the Communist Party poses to the world,” the report notes. ”
“They distorted how Americans view the People’s Republic and how they review General Secretary Xi.” Pompeo added. “Today, we’re finally realizing the degree to which the Chinese Communist Party is truly hostile to the United States and our values, and its worse deeds and words and how they impact us.”
As for Trump, he is holding his fire, desperately needing a trade deal with China as his trade war does significant damage to the U.S. economy.
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