Trump is Committing “Economic Terrorism”
China’s response to Trump’s Huawei ban is characteristically over 9000
As if things weren’t bad enough between China and the United States already, the Chinese newspaper ‘The People’s Daily’ released an article on Wednesday that translates to the following –
“At present, the United States completely overestimates its ability to control the global supply chain and is due to slap itself in the face when it sobers up from its happy, ignorant self-indulgence… Don’t say we didn’t warn you.”
Yes this article is confusing, until you realise what it’s referring to..
The article is referencing Trumps actions when he recently signed an order banning Chinese company Huawei from buying electrical components including computer chips from the US.
Trumps efforts are an attempt to knee-cap Huawei because of his accusations that Huawei is engaging or may potentially engage in espionage against the United States.
While speaking at an event for agricultural groups, Trump both accused the company as being “bad” from a security standpoint, but also of being an important card in upcoming trade negotiations.
So either the company is a genuine security threat and should be perminantly banned from the US, or it’s a card that’s going to be played in what he hopes will be future negotiations with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
One would think that these two are incompatible however… you would think.
If we lived in a universe where the Chinese president gave Trump what he wanted, how would Trump explain the lifting of the security ban?
“Aaaaah.. we thought about it and we decided that all of our investigating was wrong and we done goofed. Oh, and in an unrelated turn of events the Chinese president is giving me what I asked for. What a world… Lock her up.”
Did you read that in Trumps voice? I hope so.
In spite of what Trump may or may not have hoped for when he banned Huawei from buying US computer chips, he may have just caused the United States to lose out on a hell of a lot more than chips.
What could he have overlooked?
The United States buys almost the entirety of its rare earth elements from China. These elements are used in making a multiple of products ranging from consumer electronics to weapons and even cancer medication.
The article that ‘The People’s Daily’ released was eluding to possible Chinese Government action in blocking the United States from buying these rare earth elements.
The effects of a ban like this would be far worse for the US than the computer chip ban is for China. It would also drastically escalate the trade war to a height we haven’t even come close to seeing yet in history.
China supplied the US with 80% of its rare earth imports last year and is home to 40% of the worlds total supply.
America has clearly brought a knife.. or even a spoon to the gun fight once again.
The Xinhua News stated on the issue that
“if necissary, China has plenty of cards left to play.”
The editor in chief of China’s Global Times took it one step further and Tweeted that China is
“seriously considering restricting rare exports to the US.”
They’re not gonna do it.. right?
A lot of people are sceptical that China would ever introduce a rare earth ban to the United States because of how bad it would look to the World Trade Organisation.
It is true that China has tried much harder in recent years to appear angelic to the WTO. They’ve shut down sweat shops, eliminated child labour and drastically improved trade relations with countries all over the world.
But Trump is pushing things far too hard in his trademark way, and China having a “fuck this” moment wouldn’t be historically uncharacteristic.
In recent years China has been trying to improve its relationship with the world at large and with the WTO, but we’ve seen lots of recent evidence that China only cares what the world thinks of them to a very limited extent.
What about the Uyghur’s?
Think about the recent revelations and news stories on China’s internment camps for forcibly housing its indigenous muslim Uyghur population.
Reporters have been accusing China for years of housing hundreds of thousands of Uyghur’s in cramped political re-education camps.
However recently, hard evidence was uncovered when a sign was photographed literally labelling the building as a Uyghur internment camp as reported by Vox.
The sign on the building literally translated to,
“De-extremification re-education centre”
When China was presented with the evidence did they shut the facilities down and let everyone go? Hell no,
“Aah.. fuck it”
They instead claimed that the muslim Uyghur population are a terrorist threat and re-educating them is getting ahead of terrorism.
Does that kind of rhetoric sound familiar?
… oh shit is right
What’s the point?
The point is that China does whatever it wants, and wanting the World Trade Organisation to like them isn’t going to be the barrier that stops them cranking up the trade war to 11.
The catalyst that’s going to slow them down and eventually stop this trade war is Trump sitting down with a team of intelligent thinkers and developing a plan that isn’t based on the one line his voter base can memorise – “Show them strength.”
Maybe just this once, it’s time for smarts. Before it’s too late.
Just this once.