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US Vice President Mike Pence’s Speech At The Hudson Institute

  • KIPS Bureau
  • July, 2019
  • 145
  • Global Hegemonic Games

FROM EARLY IN THIS ADMINISTRATION, PRESIDENT TRUMP HAS MADE OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH CHINA AND PRESIDENT XI A PRIORITY.

On April 6th of last year, President Trump welcomed President Xi to Mar-a-Lago. On November 8th of last year, President Trump traveled to Beijing, where China's leader welcomed him warmly. Over the course of the past two years, our President has forged a strong personal relationship with the President of the People's Republic of China, and they've worked closely on issues of common interest, most importantly the denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula.

But I come before you today because the American people deserve to know that, as we speak, Beijing is employing a whole-of-government approach, using political, economic, and military tools, as well as propaganda, to advance its influence and benefit its interests in the United States. China is also applying this power in more proactive ways than ever before, to exert influence and interfere in the domestic policy and politics of this country. Under President Trump's leadership, the United States has taken decisive action to respond to China with American action, applying the principles and the policies long advocated in these halls.

In our National Security Strategy that the President Trump released last December, he described a new era of “great power competition.” Foreign nations have begun to, as we wrote, “reassert their influence regionally and globally,” and they are “contesting (America’s) geopolitical advantages and trying [in essence] to change the international order in their favor.”In this strategy, President Trump made clear that the United States of America has adopted a new approach to China. We seek a relationship grounded in fairness, reciprocity, and respect for sovereignty, and we have taken strong and swift action to achieve that goal.

As the President said last year on his visit to China, in his words, “we have an opportunity to strengthen the relationship between our two countries and improve the lives of our citizens.” Our vision of the future is built on the best parts of our past, when America and China reached out to one another in a spirit of openness and friendship. When our young nation went searching in the wake of the Revolutionary War for new markets for our exports, the Chinese people welcomed American traders laden with ginseng and fur. When China suffered through indignities and exploitations during her so-called “Century of Humiliation,” America refused to join in, and advocated the “Open Door” policy, so that we could have freer trade with China, and preserve their sovereignty. When American missionaries brought the good news to China’s shores, they were moved by the rich culture of an ancient and vibrant people. And not only did they spread their faith, but those same missionaries founded some of China’s first and finest universities.

CHINESE OFFENSIVE POSTURING

When the Second World War arose, we stood together as allies in the fight against imperialism. And in that war's aftermath, America ensured that China became a charter member of the United Nations, and a great shape of the post-war world. But soon after it took power in 1949, the Chinese Communist Party began to pursue authoritarian expansionism.

But not even the brutal Korean War could diminish our mutual desire to restore the ties that for so long had bound our peoples together. China’s estrangement from the United States ended in 1972, and, soon after, we re-established diplomatic relations and began to open our economies to one another, and American universities began training a new generation of Chinese engineers, business leaders, scholars, and officials. After the fall of the Soviet Union, we assumed that a free China was inevitable. Heady with optimism at the turn of the 21st Century, America agreed to give Beijing open access to our economy, and we brought China into the World Trade Organization.

Previous administrations made this choice in the hope that freedom in China would expand in all of its forms -- not just economically, but politically, with a newfound respect for classical liberal principles, private property, personal liberty, religious freedom - the entire family of human rights. But that hope has gone unfulfilled. The dream of freedom remains distant for the Chinese people. And while Beijing still pays lip service to “reform and opening,” Deng Xiaoping’s famous policy now rings hollow.

Over the past 17 years, China’s GDP has grown nine-fold; it’s become the second-largest economy in the world. Much of this success was driven by American investment in China. And the Chinese Communist Party has also used an arsenal of policies inconsistent with free and fair trade, including tariffs, quotas, currency manipulation, forced technology tran...

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