- THE FLAG
- 🇺🇸 Biden and Xi: Friends Again?
🇺🇸 Biden and Xi: Friends Again?
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Left: Why a Blue-Leaning Swing State Is Getting Redder Jon Ralston, The Atlantic
Left: Haley Is on the Brink of Croaking DeSantis Ed Kilgore, New York Magazine
Left: House Dems Saved Day, But We Have To Pretend Otherwise Hayes Brown, MSNBC
Right: Is Biden Lying About Money From China? Of Course Newt Gingrich, FOX News
Right: Nikki Haley pledges to defund UN 'as much as possible' Brady Knox, Washington Examiner
Right: The Media Aren’t Quite Hackish Enough For The Biden White House David Harsanyi, The Federalist
Santos Out, Clash With Capitol Police, Gaza Cut Off
US: Capitol Police clash with group protesting "violently" outside Democratic headquarters during demonstration over Israel-Hamas war (CBS News)
US: Democratic lawmakers press Biden on Israeli violence in the West Bank (NBC News)
World: Internet, phone networks collapse in Gaza, threatening to worsen humanitarian crisis (AP)
World: Spain's Pedro Sánchez wins new term as PM after amnesty deal (BBC)
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Biden and Xi: Friends Again?
On Wednesday, President Joe Biden met with Chinese President Xi Jinping in San Francisco. The two leaders reached agreements on a pair of topics. Xi agreed to clamp down on Chinese companies manufacturing and exporting chemicals used to produce fentanyl, contributing to the opioid crisis in the U.S. Xi and Biden also agreed to reestablish military-to-military communications in order to reduce the risk of miscommunications or accidents sparking conflicts.
Reporting from the Left: Biden and China's Xi agree to resume military-to-military communications (Axios)
Reporting from the Right: Xi tells Biden U.S.-China relations never ‘smooth sailing’ but they must work together (The Washington Times)
From The Flag: Following the meeting, Biden stated on social media, “I value the conversation I had today with Xi because I think it's paramount that we understand each other clearly, leader to leader. There are critical global challenges that demand our joint leadership. And today, we made real progress.” However, at a press conference, Biden also called President Xi a dictator. Here’s what both sides are saying about the meeting.
Small Victory, But a Long Road Is Ahead
That this happened at all is a win in itself. Expectations were quite low, so it’s barely an achievement — but an achievement nonetheless.
Whether we like it or not, China is on the rise. We need to stop viewing China as a “monolithic foe to be vanquished.”
Going forward, we need to be mindful and hold China accountable for human rights issues concerning its Uyghur minority.
Takeaways from the Biden-Xi summit, where low expectations were met Stephen Collinson, CNN: “It happened, therefore it was a success. President Joe Biden’s summit with China’s President Xi Jinping south of San Francisco Wednesday may have closed a trap door under the world’s most critical diplomatic relationship, which has plunged to its most acrimonious level in 50 years. But with expectations set so deliberately low and with each side having significant incentives to declare the meeting productive, it was hardly an achievement… Biden came away hopeful that he had eased the risks posed by US and Chinese forces operating in perilously close quarters in the Asia-Pacific, which he wants to avoid escalating into yet another politically ruinous global crisis during his reelection bid next year. Xi needed to make a statement to his domestic constituency in the communist hierarchy that he has vital US relations under control at a time of economic strife. He also needed to send a signal that China now sees it in its interest to deescalate tensions with other major powers, especially the US, after a fraught chapter.”
A Message for the Aging Men Steering U.S.-China Relations Jacob Dreyer, The New York Times: “America and its hawkish politicians must stop viewing China’s Communist-led system as some immutable, monolithic foe to be vanquished; intergenerational transformation in China is well underway. … China is undergoing a profound transition to a high-tech, highly educated, prosperous and powerful nation that its ‘builder generation’ could only imagine. … Live in China for a while and you realize that it’s not collapsing any time soon, despite what hawks in the United States might hope. … China is perhaps the greatest rival America has faced. As U.S. Ambassador Nicholas Burns put it, China ‘is infinitely stronger than the Soviet Union ever was,’ thanks to its economic, scientific and technological power, its capacity for innovation and its global ambition. But rather than a foe, we should see in China — and its many strengths — a powerful potential partner to work with in solving the world’s biggest problems.”
One more opinion piece from the Left: Tough talk from Biden at APEC won’t move Xi Jinping. Here’s what will Yaqui Wang, Los Angeles Times
Mixed: “Good,” “Bad,” or “Don’t Be Fooled”
The world is better off economically if the United States and China are on good terms.
It is wrong that we’ve allowed this meeting to happen while papering over the human rights abuses of the Uyghur people and other wrongdoings perpetrated by China.
“The atmospherics suggested a new era of bilateral good feelings. But no one should be fooled that this is anything other than an era of intense competition.”
Biden and Xi’s meeting is a boost to the global economy Matthew Lynn, The Spectator: “…there was a significant easing of tensions between the two largest economies in the world. Military communications will resume, reducing the chances of a catastrophic miscalculation between the two nations, controls on narcotics will be tightened up, and there will be a resumption of high-level diplomatic contacts. It remains to be seen if that sticks. But if it does, one point is surely clear. That could yield a huge ‘peace dividend’ for the global economy. … True, no one would want the US to be weak in the face of Chinese aggression, or to give in to Xi’s demands. But with a Chinese economy starting to struggle with growth slowing, rising youth unemployment, and with a huge debt mountain from over-ambitious property development, Xi may well have decided that a slow-motion Cold War with the US is not something he needs right now. If so, lots of investment will be unlocked, and trade can resume. That will give the global economy a much needed boost.”
The whitewashing of Xi Jinping is grotesque Zachary Faria, Washington Examiner: “Xi received an incredibly warm welcome in San Francisco… This is the same man responsible for carrying out a genocide of the Uyghurs in Xinjiang, a massive human rights abuse that includes forced labor (which has its ties to China’s climate projects that are so prioritized by Democrats and corporations) and forced sterilization. Thousands of Uyghurs have been thrown into concentration camps under Xi’s direction, and yet he receives a glowing welcome in the United States from American CEOs, Biden officials, and civilians. … On top of that, Xi is preparing China to conquer and subjugate Taiwan after having already done the same thing to Hong Kong. He is responsible for the global COVID pandemic that killed over a million Americans after China let the virus loose (most likely from a virology lab) and lied about its severity. … Despite all of this, American corporations and Democratic politicians still feel the need to normalize and praise Xi.”
One more opinion piece from the Right: The Biden-Xi Truce of the Moment The Editorial Board, The Wall Street Journal
Enemies or Allies?
Ahead of the meeting between the two presidents, a historical survey found the share of Chinese adults who view the United States as an enemy or unfriendly (48%) hit a tracking low in October. But the share who view America unfavorably as of early November (69%) is on an upswing, suggesting limits to Chinese interests in cooling things down.
On the flip side, the share of US adults who view China as an enemy or unfriendly (59%) remains in line with its historical trend. The share who view China unfavorably (61%) is similarly elevated and trending sideways.
Views on whether Washington and Beijing are in a Cold War offer a notable point of alignment: The shares in each country that said they are in one remain near tracking highs, at 25% among US adults and 32% among Chinese adults (Morning Consult).
Do you believe it is in America's interests to have a more collegial or adversarial relationship with China?
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Articles of Confederation, Mystery Song, Recreational Airstrip
Page I of the Articles of Confederation
On This Day in 1777: Congress submitted the Articles of Confederation to the states for ratification. The Articles had been signed by Congress two days earlier, after 16 months of debate. Bickering over land claims between Virginia and Maryland delayed final ratification for almost four more years.
Mental Floss: 25 Words That Don’t Mean What They Used To
Today I learned only one flight operates weekly to and from Tuvalu in the South Pacific. When not in use, the Funafuti Airport airstrip turns into a common area for sports and social activities. A siren blares when it is time for residents to clear the runway due to an approaching flight.