After Joe Biden called Xi Jinping on Chinese New Year’s Eve (February 11, 2021), and they spoke for 2 hours, several of the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) primary media published commentaries discussing the CCP’s advice to the Biden administration.
The talk showed three positive signals. The first positive signal was the Chinese New Year’s greeting to each other.
The second positive signal was the willingness to communicate. China and the United States should re-establish a number of dialogue mechanisms to understand each other’s policy intentions accurately and to avoid misunderstandings and miscalculations.
The third positive signal was the identification with the spirit of cooperation.
The Xinhua article also stated, “The Sino-U.S. relationship is at a critical juncture at this moment. The diplomacy by the head of state will have an irreplaceable guiding role (on this issue).”
2. People’s Daily:
(We) must point out, China wants to develop a cooperative relationship with the U.S. but this cooperation must be a cooperation based on principles. Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Xinjiang related issues are China’s internal affair. They are related to China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. The U.S. should respect China’s core interests and act with caution.
How to deal with differences is a subject that both China and the U.S. must answer well. … China and the U.S. should re-establish all kinds of dialogue mechanisms to understand each other’s policy intentions accurately and to avoid misunderstandings and miscalculations.
3. Huanqiu (Global Times):
The U.S. briefing also said that Biden started with his New Year wishes to the Chinese people, which was widely seen as Biden’s gesture to show respect to President Xi Jinping and China. He seemed to use that goodwill to balance some tough messages the new U.S. administration has been sending to China and how the public opinion has been interpreting them lately.
Choosing the conversation time at the Chinese New Year’s Eve and starting with a Chinese New Year’s greeting between the two heads of state reaffirmed Biden’s basic attitude of wanting to compete with China with the bottom line of not to turn competition into conflicts.
The Sino-U.S. relation has become more and more complex. The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) announced on February 10 that it would establish a China Working Group to coordinate each of the DOD’s components of China policy and actions. This is an unprecedented mechanism arrangement. It should impact the overall U.S. – China policy. There is a trend of more conflict between China and the U.S. Some U.S. elites have the attitude of “the tougher toward China the better,” but if that keeps developing, the U.S. will face inevitable strategic risk. Therefore, controlling Sino-U.S. differences is a key issue that the Biden administration has no choice but to discuss seriously with China.
1. Excerpt in Chinese:
Source: Xinhua, February 11, 2021
2. Excerpt in Chinese:
Source: People’s Daily, February 14, 2021
3. Excerpt in Chinese:
Source: Huanqiu, February 11, 2021