On August 11, President Donald Trump railed against Joe Biden for being "weak" on China in a pair of interviews. The president referred to himself in the third person and said that "China will own the United States if the election is lost by Donald Trump."
Trump on China
President Trump talked to conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt and said that if he won't win the election, China will own the United States and Americans will have to learn how to speak Chinese.
Trump's remark was the latest escalation in a contest with Democratic presidential nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden on who can be tough on China. The battle has become the central facet of the presidential campaign, as reported by Business Insider.
President Trump blames China for failing to contain the spread of COVID-19 and concealing information about the disease in its early stages.
Trump said that his relationship with Chinese President Xi Jinping has now turned sour and his administration has taken a series of actions that have heightened tensions with Beijing, including the highest-profile visits by an American official to Taiwan in decades.
But even as the Trump administration ratchets up the pressure, President Trump has declined on multiple occasions to condemn China's provocative moves including detaining Uyghurs in camps in western China and HongKong's battle to be free from China's grasp.
The president took the interview as an opportunity to trash his former aide, John Bolton, slamming Bolton's claim that he praised China's imprisonment of Uyghurs. Trump stated that Bolton is a "sick person and not a smart person."
According to the US State Department, there are more than one million Uyghurs, Kyrgyz, ethnic Kazakhs and members of other Muslin minority groups that have been detained by the Chinese government in internment camps, where they are said to be subjected to cruel and inhumane treatment, torture, physical and sexual abuse, forced labor and death.
Two sources told CNN in 2019 that Trump was reluctant to impose sanctions on China because he was in the middle of negotiating a trade deal. During a private phone call, he promised Xi that the US would remain quiet on pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong.
Bans and sanctions
In another radio interview on August 11, President Trump was more focused on the potential upsides for the United States to the political crackdown in Hong Kong, which the White House has decried.
Trump told Clay Travis on Fox Sports Radio that for years Hong Kong was making "a lot of money" that the United States could have made in the New York Stock Exchange and other "great exchanges".
Trump added that the United States gave tremendous incentives that cost the country a fortune to keep Hong Kong viable and going and now he ended everything and that there is "no incentive whatsoever.
Last week, the US sanctioned Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam and 10 other Chinese and Hong Kong officials for their role in crackdowns on political freedom. The sanction came after President Trump revoked Hong Kong's special status on trade-in May 2020.
Trump also took steps to ban TikTok in the United States, which is owned by a Chinese company. The Trump administration also closed a Chinese consulate in Houston.
The administration also toughened its position on the South China Sea and it worked to persuade allies not to allow Chinese mobile company Huawei onto their 5G networks.