In his view, the Chinese government handled the epidemic inappropriately, but before completing the investigation, the Trump administration bit the conclusion that the virus originated from the Wuhan Virus Research Institute, reducing the possibility of Beijing cooperating with international scientific research. In the fight against China’s mutual discredit, the US government is not only unable to solve the problem, but may also be seen by other countries as a party involved in manufacturing problems, reducing the space for international cooperation to fight against epidemics.
“Future American leaders should learn from this period that when China starts digging holes for itself, Washington should not grab the shovel with Beijing,” He Ruien wrote recently.
Why is Sino-US relations so far? What mistakes might the two countries make in their foreign policy? What kind of variables will Sino-US relations bring about the recoil of the new crown epidemic and the 2020 US election? The BBC recently interviewed He Ruien on the above issues.
BBC: Many observers of US-China relations believe that this is the most severe time since the two countries established diplomatic relations. Do you agree with this statement? What signs indicate the current status of US-China relations?
He Ruien: Yes, I think so. There have been many difficult times in relations between the two countries, such as after the Tiananmen incident in 1989, the Taiwan Strait crisis in 1996, the bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade in 1998, and the South China Sea collision in 2001. However, these are all crises caused by an event. When the two countries go through those difficulties together, the relationship continues to develop. This time it feels different, and the pressure on the relationship between the two countries is more structural. This is due to the long-term accumulated pressure, rather than a single incident, which finally overwhelmed the relationship between the two countries.
I think the US-China relationship is currently quite dysfunctional. The United States and China are in a struggle, which has led to fewer areas of cooperation, more areas of confrontation, and decreased control over tension. We now have an obvious common threat, but the two sides cannot unite and confront.
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