One China, Two Trump China Policies: ‘Peaceful Coexistence’ vs. Existential Threat

◎ If Trump continues to approve his team’s substantive approach in implementing his policy objectives, the free world’s prospects will continue to improve.


President Trump has confirmed former national security adviser John Bolton’s most serious allegation: that, at least temporarily, he virtually endorsed Xi Jinping’s Uighur concentration camps in China.

Asked whether he declined to impose sanctions against China, Trump said: “Well, we were in the middle of a major trade deal. … [W]hen you’re in the middle of a negotiation and then all of a sudden you start throwing additional sanctions on—we’ve done a lot.”

It was not a proud moment for Trump or for America. Yet, just three days later, Bolton’s replacement as director of the National Security Council, Robert O’Brien, delivered a powerful indictment of the Chinese Communist government and criticized prior administrations’ “passivity” in the face of Beijing’s violations of international law and norms.

First published in The Hill.

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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