Biden-XI Virtual Summit: The World Must not be Blinded by  Superficial Talks

by Eli Mshomi
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Amid the wave of sanctions and distrust, Joe Biden and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping met in a virtual summit that lasted more than three hours.

While this meetup is expected to fend off some tensions between two arch-rivals, it has failed to trigger any immediate breakthrough in any important matter.

Ranging from Taiwan issues to human rights to trade, the agenda of the meeting was diverse, but only practical follow-up will characterize the meeting’s success or failure.

China warned the United States against “playing with fire,” signaling toward its Taiwan policy and dividing the world against political blocs.

China is surely concerned about the US involvement in geopolitics through AUKUS, which XI also signaled indirectly during the latest meeting with Biden.

The Silver Lining in the Cloud: Peace will Prevail Only if Biden Follows Up the Talks

However, amid all of the crisis, there was surely a silver lining around the cloud. Both the countries did show intent to resolve their differences, with Biden reminding XI about the responsibility both the countries hold to keep the world safe.

This meeting had its own significance since it was the first official bilateral talks between the two giants since China launched hypersonic missiles and disturbed the balance of power in the region.

The talks must be followed up by practical actions; otherwise, it would be an eye washer for the global audiences otherwise.

The world is looking toward the strategies which both administrations will devise in the aftermath of the virtual summit.

China and the USA have multiple avenues to cooperate, on top of which remain climate change. Since the departure of Trump from the White House, the scope of this collaboration has become higher as Biden has pledged to take measures to heal the climate recently in the COP26 summit.

Although Biden lambasted the Chinese president for not showing up at the summit earlier, the official presence of China at the event portrays an encouraging picture.

The United States has also taken the first step to heal the persisting distrust between the two countries, as the call was arranged at Biden’s request.

Nonetheless, if China still fails to comply with the US and continues working on contradictory issues, it should give Biden a clear signal that the Chinese administration is just trying to be in the good books as a global power by speaking sugar-coated statements and not taking any practical measures.

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China US-Meeting: Is it just an Eyewash?

The meetup must not allow any stakeholder to have high dreams. While the US has often reiterated that its Taiwan policy is clear, China once again asserted to Biden that it is seeking a peaceful reunification of Taiwan soon. This clearly depicts that China has already made a plan and is now just finding a perfect time to go all-out.

But the most alarming part of the Chinese strategy is not making headlines at all. China categorically told Biden that it would take “resolute measures” against Taiwan if the resistance came within Taiwan, which should be clear enough to tell the world about the upcoming Chinese war against Taiwan.

China is expecting to challenge Taiwan’s sovereignty and expecting no resistance from the oppressed nation.

This surely will not be the case, as the US has also vowed to defend Taiwan in case of the Chinese invasion.

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Indirectly, XI Jinping has warned Biden he will take resolute measures against the US, which should be a warning sign for the Biden administration.

With the rising military supremacy of China, this should serve as a fair warning that China is ready to launch a kill against the US even if it is forced to use the newly developed missile technology.

 

Final Thoughts

The Chinese dilemma is that they have always followed their verbal strategy by practical actions.

Whether it is about the South China Sea issue or expanding its military might, China demonstrated its will to the world that its rhetoric will always be followed by the assault.

However, this is not the case with the USA, which always goes to the back footing at the time of implementation. This has been seen time and time again as the US is still reluctant to devise a counter-strategy to tackle China after the testing of the hypersonic missile.

Nevertheless, if Biden wants real peace, he needs to follow up the meeting with actionable strategies so that the words can be converted into actions.

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