Well, that didn’t go well.
Last week, China and the United States met in Anchorage for the first high-level talks between the two governments since Joe Biden was elected president. It was supposed to begin with a photo op and brief opening statements from each side. Instead, we got a preview of how ill-prepared America is to deal with an ascendant China.
Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken, it could be said, started it. In his initial remarks, Blinken said the U.S. wanted to “discuss our deep concerns with actions by China, including in Xinjiang, Hong Kong, Taiwan, cyberattacks on the United States, and economic coercion toward our allies.”
The Chinese delegation was prepared for this “provocation.” Yang Jiechi, director of the Central Commission for Foreign Affairs of the Chinese Communist Party, launched into a 16-minute tirade against America, accusing the U.S. of condescension toward China.