◎ President Trump has frequently expressed frustration over China’s dishonesty and noncooperation from the start of the coronavirus outbreak.
Cui Tiankai, China’s ambassador to the United States, has said the two countries need to look beyond the pandemic controversy and undertake “a serious rethinking of the very foundations of this important relationship.” The next day, President Trump reportedly declared: “I’m getting tired of China.” Neither Cui nor Trump elaborated.
The Chinese emissary knows that the Trump administration has upended “the very foundations” of U.S.-China relations, from trade to Taiwan to the East and South China Seas to human rights. Under the least ominous interpretation, he was advocating a return to the arrangements that prevailed before Trump took office.
Joseph Bosco served as China country director for the Secretary of Defense from 2005 to 2006 and as Asia-Pacific director of humanitarian assistance and disaster relief from 2009 to 2010. He is a nonresident fellow at the Institute for Corean-American Studies and the Institute for Taiwan-American Studies, and has held nonresident appointments in the Asia-Pacific program at the Atlantic Council and the Southeast Asia program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
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