The China Factor

On Monday evening, Tucker Carlson’s opening monologue related to a speech given by a Chinese academic named Di Dongsheng. Di is the Vice Dean of the School of International Relations at Renmin University and the Vice Director and Secretary of the Center for Foreign Strategic Studies of China. Carlson’s monologue is lightly re-worked as an op-ed here.

Di’s lecture, to a Chinese audience, discussed Chinese-American relations. Tucker quoted some passages that are rather explosive:

The Trump administration is in a trade war with us, so why can’t we fix the Trump administration? Why, between 1992 and 2016, did China and the U.S., used to be able to settle all kinds of issues? No mater what kind of crises we encountered … things were solved in no time … We fixed everything in two months. What is the reason? I’m going to throw out something maybe a little bit explosive here. It’s just because we have people at the top. At the top of America’s core inner circle of power and influence, we have our old friends.

But Trump has been a problem for the CCP:

Since the 1970s, Wall Street had a very strong influence on the domestic and foreign affairs of the United States, so we had a channel to rely on. But the problem is that after 2008, the status of Wall Street has declined, and more importantly, after 2016, Wall Street can’t fix Trump. … So during the U.S.-China trade war they [Wall Street] tried to help. And I know that, my friends on the U.S. side told me that they tried to help, but they couldn’t do much.

Di’s speech is interesting, even apart from the passages that arguably have explosive implications for U.S. politics, and he doesn’t regard the US-China coupling as entirely in China’s favor. The Chinese government reportedly has banned the video of the speech from social media in China, but it is still available on YouTube:

Does Di’s speech have the significance that Tucker Carlson attributes to it, calling the speech “as close to a smoking gun as we have ever seen”? It certainly is one more piece of evidence, but in truth, evidence of China’s undue influence in the U.S., whether we are talking about politicians, universities, media or Wall Street, has been plentiful for a while. This is one more area where history will record that Donald Trump was right.

Speaking of politicians, the revelation that Congressman Eric Swalwell, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, had a close and likely romantic relationship with a Chinese spy who fled the U.S. shortly after the FBI briefed Swalwell, offers a lurid counterpoint to Di’s academic lecture.

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