“President Nixon once said he feared he had created a ‘Frankenstein’ by opening the world to the CCP”, Mike Pompeo said Thursday, in a wildly aggressive foreign policy speech delivered at the Nixon Library in Yorba Linda, California. “And here we are”.
Pompeo’s remarks came just a day after the US evicted the Chinese from a consulate in Houston, a move expected to trigger an in-kind response from Beijing before the weekend.
The Justice department on Thursday announced charges against four individuals accused of visa fraud related to an alleged scheme to lie about their connections to the PLA. Those individuals are Xin Wang, Chen Song, Kaikai Zhao, and Juan Tang, who, according to the FBI, is holed up in China’s San Francisco consulate.
Read more: Spies Everywhere!
They face up to a decade in prison if convicted, and the DoJ said the FBI recently conducted additional interviews of visa holders who are thought to have omitted information regarding their own links to the Chinese military. These individuals are strewn across more than two-dozen American cities.
“The FBI is seeking to arrest Tang pursuant to an Arrest Warrant and Complaint that were filed on June 26, and unsealed on July 20”, the DoJ emphasized. “Tang has sought refuge at the Chinese consulate in San Francisco, where she remains”.
That’s the exceptionally fraught backdrop against which Pompeo delivered what might very fairly be described as an overwrought speech, even by his standards.
“If we bend the knee now, our children’s children may be at the mercy of the Chinese Community Party, whose actions are the primary challenge today in the free world”, he declared, adding the following,
The free world must triumph over this new tyranny. If the free world doesn’t change Communist China, Communist China will change us. There can’t be a return to past practices because they’re comfortable or because they’re convenient. The kind of engagement we have been pursuing has not brought the kind of change inside of China that President Nixon hoped to induce. The truth is that our policies – and those of other free nations – resurrected China’s failing economy, only to see Beijing bite the international hands that were feeding it. We, the freedom-loving nations of the world must induce China to change … in more creative and assertive ways, because Beijing’s actions threaten our people and our prosperity. Xi Jinping is a true believer in a bankrupt, totalitarian ideology. [He] isn’t destined to tyrannize inside and outside China forever unless we allow it. Securing our freedoms from the Chinese Communist Party is the mission of our time.
Again, the speech was inflammatory in the extreme, and will doubtlessly draw a rebuke from Beijing, likely after they announce the closure of a US consulate in retaliation for the Houston incident.
Later, in remarks to Fox, Pompeo echoed Trump in saying that the trade deal “no longer ranks first” when it comes to Sino-US relations.
At the Thursday edition of the White House’s rebooted coronavirus briefings, Trump told reporters that “the trade deal means less to me now than when I made it”.
It’s a good thing, because China has no hope of living up to its commitments under the arrangement, even as Chinese buyers continue to purchase farm goods.
Predictably, Global Times editor Hu Xijin took to Twitter to lampoon Trump’s top diplomat. “I strongly urge [the] American people to reelect Trump because his team has many crazy members like Pompeo”, Hu sneered.
“They help China strengthen solidarity and cohesion in a special way”, he added. “It’s crucial to China’s rise. As a CPC member, I thank them”.