China Warns US Not to Cross 'Red Line'

In a phone call with US Sec. of State Antony Blinken on Friday, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said the US must stop its "old routine of unilateral bullying," accusing it of trying to suppress Chinese development through the use of "salami slicing" tactics.

China Warns US Not to Cross 'Red Line'
Image credit: EPA [via Al Jazeera]

Facts

  • In a phone call with US Sec. of State Antony Blinken on Friday, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said the US must stop its "old routine of unilateral bullying," accusing it of trying to suppress Chinese development through the use of "salami slicing" tactics.
  • The "salami tactics" he was referring to were the small, incremental actions the US takes to achieve a much larger result, particularly regarding Taiwan, which Pres. Xi Jinping has previously said is the "first red line" that the US must not cross in US-China relations.
  • Coming after presidents Biden and Xi met at the G20 summit in Bali last month, Wang stressed that the two sides should focus on translating the consensus of the two leaders into practical policies.
  • Pres. Biden has alleged that China has conducted "coercive and increasingly aggressive actions towards Taiwan," claiming it undermines peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and the broader region.
  • According to a State Dept. brief, Blinken discussed the "need to maintain open lines of communication and responsibly manage" US-China relations, also raising concerns over the Russia-Ukraine war. Wang said China has "always stood by the side of peace and the purposes of the UN Charter."

Sources: Al Jazeera, CNN, and Reuters.

Narratives

  • Pro-China narrative, as provided by Global Times. Wang justifiably warned Blinken to ensure the US backs off its encroachment into Chinese domestic affairs. Whether it be through the State Dept., CIA, or military, the US has long sought to secretly undermine China instead of cooperating in the open as a friendly partner. The reason for these schemes is simple: the US can't fathom a world in which it can't bully each nation into doing its bidding.
  • Anti-China narrative, as provided by FPRI. As China rapidly strengthens its military capabilities — and subsequent aggression — the US can and must use both unilateral and multilateral diplomatic and military strategies to confront what has now become the US and its regional allies' number one threat. Preemptive but cautious moves are necessary to show China a united Western front willing to defend places like Taiwan if need be.

Predictions