Chinese state media on Friday played up dictator Xi Jinping’s meeting with President Joe Biden on Wednesday as an “epochal” event, a diplomatic milestone that has the entire world waiting in breathless anticipation for what comes next.
Besides praising Xi for his diplomatic skills, the point of this hyperventilation was probably to set the stage for a guilt trip if Biden does not deliver everything Xi thinks he was promised.
The state-run Global Times claimed there has been “unanimous high praise” for the “candid and in-depth exchange of views” between Xi and Biden, reflecting its “epochal significance.”
“This summit is a strategically significant and far-reaching meeting of the heads of state, leaving a unique and profound mark in the history of China-U.S. relations,” the Chinese Communist paper gushed.
The Global Times said it was about time the U.S. realized all the “common interests” it has with China, and embraced Beijing’s motto of “win-win cooperation.”
“Dialogue and cooperation are the only correct choices for both countries,” the editors pontificated.
“President Xi insightfully pointed out that China and the US should jointly develop a right perception, manage disagreements effectively, jointly advance mutually beneficial cooperation, jointly shoulder responsibilities as major countries, and jointly promote people-to-people exchanges,” the Global Times said, without mentioning anything Joe Biden might have insightfully pointed out.
The Chinese editorialists also praised Xi for his masterful performance at the reception full of American business tycoons he attended after meeting with Biden. The Global Times predicted Xi’s “friendly and open attitude” would be like “sunlight piercing through the clouds” to dispel the “atmosphere of demonizing China.”
With the mandatory praise for its autocratic ruler out of the way, the Global Times got down to brass tacks and hinted the Biden administration had to keep concessions coming if it expected Xi’s help in fighting the fentanyl epidemic.
“Many American media outlets have noticed that both sides will further cooperate on the fentanyl issue. This demonstrates China’s goodwill as a partner and friend to help the U.S. solve its domestic problems. Similarly, Washington should also demonstrate the correct way of getting along between partners on issues that the Chinese people care about,” the editors wrote.
The Global Times helpfully followed up with the suggestion that Washington could return Beijing’s goodwill on fentanyl – which thus far consists of a single notice from a single Chinese regulatory agency asking Chinese companies to knock off supplying precursor chemicals to narcotics dens – by lifting all sanctions and export restrictions on advanced technology.
China’s state-run Xinhua news service on Friday approvingly quoted Robert Lawrence Kuhn, chairman of the Kuhn Foundation, praising the Xi-Biden meeting as “the most important diplomatic event of the year, surely for both China and the United States and arguably for the entire world.”
Kuhn is a longtime admirer of Xi’s regime, one of Chinese state media’s go-to “American experts” for pro-Beijing quotes, an occasional contributor to Chinese publications, and the recipient of the China Reform Friendship Medal, which is among the regime’s highest awards for its foreign friends. Xinhua somehow forgot to mention any of that, merely identifying him as a “veteran expert on China.”
“The very fact that the summit meeting was held is of course the most important signal, because neither side would allow the meeting if each were not highly confident of a successful outcome. That said, the specific agreements are important – such as on climate change or fentanyl precursors or formal communications schedules – because these exemplify and reaffirm the commitment of both sides,” Kuhn said.