“When I call you up, your line’s engaged.” That’s the complaint registered by the singer in the Beatles’ “You Won’t See Me.” The song comes to mind in connection with this morning’s interesting AP story by Ellen Knickmeyer: “‘It just rang’: In crises, US-China hotline goes unanswered.” Knickmeyer reports right at the top of her story:
Within hours of an Air Force F-22 downing a giant Chinese balloon that had crossed the United States, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin reached out to his Chinese counterpart via a special crisis line, aiming for a quick general-to-general talk that could explain things and ease tensions.
But Austin’s effort Saturday fell flat, when Chinese Defense Minister Wei Fenghe declined to get on the line, the Pentagon says.
Contrast Knickmeyer’s report with President Biden’s self-liquidating response to Judy Woodruff earlier this week (below). Biden was obviously misleading about his alleged chat with Xi last week, as becomes evident within a few seconds, as well as the implication of related discussions by his “people” with the Chinese authorities.
The predicate of Woodruff’s question is that everything should be beautiful between the United States and China, while Biden reassures her that it is. This is pathetic.
My point here, however, and I do have one, is that Biden is obviously making it up as he snores along. Forgive me for repeating myself — what we have coming into plain view here is a “credibility gap” superimposed on an “awareness gap.”
Q: "Have relations now between the U.S. and China taken a big hit?"
BIDEN: "No" *long pause* "no"
Q: "How do you know?"
BIDEN: "I know. I've talked to them." pic.twitter.com/pH3O3atwzi
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) February 8, 2023