This article appears in the March 11, 2022 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
Biden Sends Former U.S. Government Officials to Taiwan
President Joe Biden sent a delegation of former U.S. government officials to Taiwan, including former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Mike Mullen, and former Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, Michèle Flournoy. The delegation met with Taiwan president Tsai Ing-wen on March 2. Speaking at a press availability with Tsai, Adm. Mullen said that maintaining peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait is “not just a U.S. interest, but also a global one.” Then turning to Tsai, he said, “We come to Taiwan at a very difficult and critical moment in world history. As President Biden has said, democracy is facing sustained and alarming challenges, most recently in Ukraine…. Now more than ever, democracy needs champions.”
In her comments, Tsai said that Taiwan would continue to bolster its defenses against China adding that she considered the resistance of the Ukrainian people to be an inspiration. “As a member of the international community, Taiwan not only expresses severe condemnation, but also participates in international sanctions against Russia and initiates humanitarian assistance to Ukraine,” she said. “Now is the time for democracies in the world to unite, and Taiwan cannot be absent.”
The Chinese Foreign Ministry reacted to the Mullen visit on March 1 in its regular briefing. “The Chinese people are firmly determined and resolved to defend national sovereignty and territorial integrity,” said Wang Wenbin, the Foreign Ministry Spokesman. “The attempt by the U.S. to show support to Taiwan will be in vain, no matter whom the U.S. sends. China urges the U.S. to abide by the one-China principle and stipulations in the three China-U.S. joint communiqués, stop all forms of official interactions with Taiwan, and handle Taiwan-related issues in a prudent manner, lest it should further undermine the larger interests of China-U.S. relations and peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait.”
As Mullen and his cohorts left Taiwan on March 3, former Trump Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was arriving. Having lost much of his pot-belly (no doubt with plans to run for higher office), he was awarded the Order of Brilliant Star with Gold Cordon by the Taiwanese president. Pompeo also said that the United States should take immediate steps to give Taiwan diplomatic recognition. Foreign Ministry Spokesman Wang Wenbin was quick to reply on March 4: “Mike Pompeo is a former politician with bankrupt credibility. His lunatic remarks will lead nowhere.”
Ukraine Asks China To Mediate Ukraine-Russia Dispute
The Chinese and Ukrainian Foreign Ministers, Wang Yi and Dmytro Kuleba, spoke on March 1 by telephone, at the latter’s initiative, according to China’s Foreign Ministry. According to Reuters, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry reported afterwards in a statement that Kuleba had asked Wang to use China’s ties with Russia to stop its invasion, and that Wang had replied that China was ready to make every effort to help end the war through diplomacy.
According to the Chinese Foreign Ministry readout, Kuleba briefed Wang on the outcome of the first round of talks with Russia, and “noted that although the negotiations were not smooth, the Ukrainian side still maintains calm and is willing to move forward with the talks. He said that China has played a constructive role on this issue,” and that Ukraine “looked forward to China’s mediation efforts for the ceasefire.”
Wang, for his part, said China “calls on Ukraine and Russia to find a solution through negotiations and supports all constructive international efforts that are conducive to a political settlement,” while stressing “that China has always believed that the security of one country should not be achieved at the expense of the security of other countries, and that regional security cannot be achieved by expanding military blocs.”
In separate calls with European counterparts on February 25—with British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell, and Emmanuel Bonne, diplomatic counselor to French President Emmanuel Macron—Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi emphasized five points that characterize China’s position on Ukraine.
First, respecting and safeguarding the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries under the UN Charter;
Second, a country’s security cannot come at the expense of harming others’ security, and regional security cannot be guaranteed by reinforcing or expanding military blocs; Russia’s legitimate demands on security should be taken seriously;
Third, all parties in Ukraine must exercise necessary restraint in order to prevent the situation from deteriorating or even getting out of control, and that large-scale humanitarian crises have to be prevented;
Fourth, diplomatic efforts must be carried out and Ukraine should be a bridge of communication between the East and the West, instead of being the frontline of confrontations between major countries;
Fifth, the UN Security Council should play a constructive role in resolving the Ukraine issue and regional peace and stability as well as the security of all countries should be put first.
Wang said China always opposed the citing of Chapter VII in Security Council resolutions to authorize the use of force and sanctions. He said that China is a major country with the best record in this regard, having never invaded other countries or launched proxy wars, never sought spheres of influence, or engaged in any military bloc confrontation.
Wang Wenbin Attacks U.S. Manipulation of Media on Xinjiang
Foreign Ministry Spokesman Wang Wenbin scored comments made by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in his video address to the UN Human Rights Council on March 1, in which Blinken again repeated the phony accusations of genocide in Xinjiang.
“Over the past 60-plus years,” Wang said, “the population in China’s Xinjiang region increased fourfold and the Uyghur population grew from 2.2 million to about 12 million. The accusation of “genocide” in Xinjiang is a flat-out lie of the century. Those who make this accusation are totally unethical.”
Wang also scored the Goebbels-like control of the “narrative” on Xinjiang by the U.S. government. “I also noted media reports that revealed the specific U.S. measures to formulate Xinjiang-related propaganda strategies and spread negative information about Xinjiang in an organized manner,” Wang said. “They include encouraging U.S. academic institutions, think tanks and non-governmental organizations to constantly fabricate so-called research reports about Xinjiang and publish related books. News agencies overseen by the U.S. Agency for Global Media (USAGM) are instructed to produce fake news reports and “propaganda materials” about “genocide” and “forced labor” in Xinjiang in dozens of languages and hype up religious and sensitive topics. In the meanwhile, the USAGM coordinates with media networks in US allied countries to reprint and push such ‘products’. The U.S. online media also chip in technologically through weakening and blocking true information about Xinjiang released by the Chinese side while providing technical assistance for anti-China forces to spread false information related to the region. Such efforts are also financially supported by the U.S. government.”
New legislation working its way through the U.S. Congress calls for half a million dollars to be spent on journalists willing to write articles trashing China!
Wang Yi Says BRI Is Willing to Work with Build Back Better World
Speaking at an anniversary event on February 28, commemorating the 1972 visit of President Nixon that led the way to the establishment of relations between China and the United States, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang again reiterated that the BRI was willing to cooperate with U.S. President Biden’s planned “Build Back Better World” project.
“The two countries can join hands to provide more vaccines for Africa and the rest of the developing world, with a view to building a shield for immunity and contributing to a global victory against COVID-19,” Wang said.
“We need to maintain macroeconomic policy coordination, inject greater confidence and resilience to the global economy, and bolster solid recovery from the pandemic. We can work together to address the climate crisis, protect nature, and realize green, low-carbon and sustainable development worldwide. China is open to U.S. participation in the Belt and Road Initiative and the Global Development Initiative. We are also ready to consider coordinating with the Build Back Better World initiative of the United States to provide more quality public goods for the world.”
China Unearths Earliest State Academy from 374 BC
The ruins of ancient China’s first government-run institution of higher learning, the Jixia Academy, built in 374 BC, have been discovered in the Linzi District of Zibo City in eastern China’s Shandong Province. Founded by the State of Qi during the Warring States Period (475-221 BC), the Jixia Academy was a state institution of higher learning which performed multiple roles, serving as research institute, university, and think-tank. It existed for more than 150 years.
The Academy was founded some years after the death of Confucius and not many years from the founding of Plato's Academy in Athens in 387 BC. The philosopher Mencius (died 289 BC) spent time at the Jixia Academy. It became the model for later academies to follow.