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US-China Relations

Chinese Netizens Challenge China’s Spokesperson’s Comments on US COVID-19 Death Count

On September 25, Hua Chunying, the spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, once again tweeted and criticized the U.S. In the tweet, Hua wrote “200,000. This is not cold statistics but real lives. Without the right to survival, #HumanRights is only an illusion and nonsense.” At the same time, she attached a picture of a poster from the #COVIDMemorialProject with the following words, “In memory of the 200,000+ Americans who have needlessly lost their lives to COVID-19.”

After Hua’s remarks were posted on Sina Weibo, many people criticized them and made sarcastic remarks. By September 27, all the negative comments had been deleted. Below is the translation of some of those comments that were in the screenshot:

“Not sure how many deaths you (the CCP) have concealed! Have Americans been denied their human rights? Remember those people from Hubei (who died). Their names were not even reported.”

“You only care about fighting with foreign countries and don’t even care about the massive flooding in China!”

“Those who died in Wuhan do not mean anything! I prefer human rights rather than the right to survive. I own the right to survive and it has nothing to do with others.”

“The pigs in a pigpen are limited in their rights to survive. Do they have human rights?”

“The U.S. has compared human rights and freedom in the U.S. with what is going on in China (in the CCP), and China (the CCP) is now comparing its death toll with the death toll in the United States. China has taken the comparison and called its lower death toll a so-called victory. The CCP uses it as evidence that the Chinese people enjoy better human rights. Thus they deluded themselves that they have won a mental victory.”

“Auntie Hua, you are an Idiot. You will become a schizophrenic sooner or later.”

Comments were also left on twitter:

AbhiSpeaksStrait: “They have died because of the China Vi-Rus.”

Phantom: “What’s the real Chinese number?”

Jeri Carroll: “These numbers are not accurate. Most were in nursing homes. Most died from other medical conditions and it was then listed as COVID. It was fraud to the extreme in order to get federal money.”

1. Epoch Times, September 27, 2020
2. Twitter

China’s C919 Aircraft Repeatedly Delayed amid Doubts about U.S. Sanctions

The Comac C919, which aerospace manufacturer Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC) developed is China’s first domestically-made large passenger aircraft. It now has 815 orders from 28 customers. As the delivery date of the aircraft has been repeatedly delayed, doubts have emerged as to whether China’s aircraft industry will come under U.S. sanctions, following in the footsteps of Huawei.

Aiming to compete against the Airbus A320neo and the Boeing 737MAX, the C919 was originally scheduled to roll out its first aircraft by the end of 2015. However, it did not make its maiden flight until May 2017.

Voice of America quoted an internal document from COMAC that the company’s goal was to produce 150 C919’s annually after 2019, but did not provide a detailed schedule. Its first customer, China Eastern Airlines, is scheduled to receive the first C919 in 2021.

Shukor Yusof, founder of the aviation consulting firm Endau Analytics, has reservations about whether COMAC can deliver on time. He believes that although the aircraft is almost completed, it may not deliver until 2022 because China depends greatly on third-party suppliers from Europe and the United States. The impact of the COVID-19 epidemic is another factor.

Although China’s state media claimed that the C919 has achieved a localization rate of nearly 60 percent, the aircraft relies, to a large extent, on Western technology. Its propeller systems, flight control system, fuel system, power supply system and landing gear either use foreign products directly or come from joint ventures with foreign companies. China is mainly responsible for the design of the fuselage, wings, tail and interior.

Scott Kennedy, a scholar at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), considers that China’s dependency on the West for China’s aircraft parts and assembly is far greater than Huawei’s dependence. Due to China’s strategic path in recent years and the tension between the U.S. and China, it is very likely that the U.S. will sanction China’s aviation industry in the future.

Source: Central News Agency, September 22, 2020

CCP Continues Attacking Miles Yu

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) keeps attacking Miles Yu, a chief China policy adviser to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Miles Yu also addressed a panel, saying the Hong Kong experiment of one-country, two systems is a “bankrupt idea.” After having the high school that Yu attended in China chisel his name off the honor stone tablet, the CCP recently arranged a group of people of his genealogy to take his name out of their genealogical chart.

An online video posted last month showed a group of seniors in the Yu genealogy in Anhui Province. China held a meeting to denounce Miles Yu, though he does not have a direct relative living there. The meeting room hung up a banner that said, “Angrily condemn traitor Miles Yu, remove him from the genealogical chart, and drive him out of the genealogical chart.” The group announced six “crimes” that Yu had committed but the video didn’t show them.

The traditional Chinese culture emphasized a person’s heritage and genealogy. Taking a person out of the genealogical chart used to be a great humiliation for that person. However, after the CCP took control of China, it destroyed the traditional culture, so the genealogical charts do not mean much to the Chinese people nowadays. It is somehow bizarre for the CCP to use the genealogical chart to humiliate Miles Yu.

On September 19, Miles responded to this incident on Twitter:

“Taking my name off a genealogical chart (族谱?)that I have never heard of, and never cared about, seems bizarre. The farce crumbles under the weight of its absurdity.”

1. Chinascope, July 31, 2020

Pompeo’s Advisor’s Name Removed from Honor Stone in China

2. Radio France International, September 14, 2020中國/20200914-蓬佩奧智囊余茂春被逐出族譜
3. Radio France International, September 19, 2020政治/20200919-被斥-漢奸-逐出族譜-余茂春-鬧劇在其荒謬的重壓下瓦解
4. Twitter, Miles Yu’s account, September 19, 2020

SMIC’s Claim of Having No Military Tie Is Questionable

Taiwanese news site NewTalk recently reported that U.S. Pentagon officials advised that the Trump administration is considering blacklisting Chinese domestic chip maker SMIC due to its ties to the Chinese military. This could cause major damage to the Chinese chip-making industry, since SMIC is China’s largest and the most advanced chip manufacturer. It is also Huawei’s only hope for low-end chip supply. SMIC has issued announcements claiming it has no relationship with the Chinese military. However, according to Mainland media reports, SMIC was the sole manufacturer for the KD5660 Level-A network exchange chip designed by a company named ArmyFly, which is headquartered in Beijing and is dedicated to serving the Chinese military with focuses on army information network and equipment innovation. The KD560 chip even won the highest award issued by the Equipment Development Department of the Central Military Commission. ArmyFly’s customers are all military branches and SMIC, as its award-winning chip supplier, now declares it has nothing to do with ArmyFly.

Source: NewTalk, September 10, 2020

People’s Daily Refused to Publish U.S. Ambassador’s Op-Ed, Accusing U.S. of Being Overbearing

Terry Branstad, the U.S. Ambassador to China, recently approached the People’s Daily, hoping to publish his op-ed on improving U.S.-China relations. People’s Daily, however, rejected the U.S. Ambassador’s request. China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and People’s Daily responded on Thursday September 10, calling the U.S. Ambassador’s article “full of loopholes” and accused the U.S. of being ” illogical, overbearing and unreasonable” in this matter.

In the Op-Ed titled, “Resetting the Relationship Based on Reciprocity,” Branstad stated that the relationship between the U.S. and China has become increasingly imbalanced. U.S. companies, journalists, diplomats, and even civil society have been given unequal access. While U.S. journalists face restrictions on reporting and even entering China, Chinese state media workers have long enjoyed open access in the United States.

At a regular press conference on Thursday, Zhao Lijian, spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said that Branstad’s article “attacks” and “smears” China, saying that the U.S. request of “publishing the op-ed with its full content with no alteration” clearly has nothing to do with freedom of the press. Zhao Lijian said that the US is “deliberately touching porcelain to find fault” [Editor’s note: deliberately manufacturing the outrage to find fault with China.]

U.S. Secretary of State Pompeo issued a statement late on Wednesday night to the People’s Daily for refusing to publish Branstad’s op-ed criticizing China’s propaganda agencies of hypocrisy and lack of reciprocal treatment and that China’s Ambassador to the U.S. Cui Tiankai alone has published five Op-eds this year in prominent U.S. news outlets.

Since the beginning of this year, the U.S. has begun to put pressure on the Chinese authorities to achieve reciprocity in terms of the number of media, the working environment of journalists, and the free flow of information. Related measures have caused a strong backlash from China. The People’s Daily, Xinhua News Agency and other Chinese propaganda agencies have recently published long articles in succession criticizing U.S. practices.

On August 25, the People’s Daily published a 30,000-word article in three pages criticizing the China policy speech delivered by US Secretary of State Pompeo at the Nixon Presidential Library.

Source: Voice of America, September 10, 2020

Micron Announced Cut-Off of Supply to Huawei

Well-known Chinese news site NetEase (NASDAQ: NTES) recently reported that Micron, Huawei’s sole primary memory and flash memory supplier for 20 years, announced compliance with the U.S. ban on Huawei. This is another major blow to Huawei’s supply chain after TSMC’s similar announcement. Micron is the world’s largest semiconductor memory vendor. Micron, Samsung and Hynix together own 95 percent of the world’s DRAM market. Micron is also one of the six vendors that together hold 99 percent of the world’s NAND flash memory market. The only hope Huawei has now is to obtain domestic support from Yangtze Memory Technologies for NAND, ChangXin Memory Technologies (CXMT) for DRAM, and Jinhua Integrated Circuit (JHICC) for DRAM. However, the U.S. already banned JHICC in 2018, due to a lawsuit that Micron filed for unauthorized use of intellectual properties. Yangtze Memory’s manufacturing process depends heavily on high-end equipment like the mask aligners from the Netherland’s SAML, which also uses U.S technology. If the U.S. blacklists the other two Chinese domestic suppliers, Huawei will face a death sentence on the memory side too, in addition to the central processing chips.

Source: NetEase, September 2, 2020

Google and Facebook Gave Up on Hong Kong Submarine Cable Plan

Well-known Chinese news site Sohu (NASDAQ: SOHU) recently reported that the Google and Facebook joint venture plan of laying new submarine cable now officially dropped the U.S.-to-Hong Kong segment. The two quickly adjusted and submitted a new plan to connect with the Philippines and Taiwan. The adjusted pacific fiber cable plan eliminated the earlier partner named Pacific Optical Data Communications, headquartered in Hong Kong. The move was in response to the objection from multiple U.S. government organizations, including the FCC and the Justice Department, as well as several U.S. national security agencies. In April, Google obtained a six-month temporary permit to proceed. The new plan is the official amendment to the original application. The FCC confirmed the national security concerns. Google validated the report and ensured the public that the application is going through the proper channels for final approval. A Facebook representative encouraged people to check the official FCC filing information for more details.

Source: Sohu, August 30, 2020