On February 2, before US President Joe Biden (Joe Biden) and Chinese President Xi Jinping made a trans-ocean call to convey the content of each other's statements, some news from Washington aroused some interest from the outside world.
On February 2, the Biden administration asked the U.S. Federal Court to suspend the overseas version of Douyin (TikTok) In order to re-examine the mobile application "threat to US national security."At the same time, there are also rumors that the Biden administration seems to have "withdrawn" the prior Donald Trump administration’s targeting of China’s foreign language teaching institutions.Confucius Institute"The ban.Some Beijing observers are quite excited about this, thinking that this may be a sign that Sino-US relations are "showing a cautiously optimistic trend."
From a purely phenomenological level, the Biden administration’s move does seem to show a mild side, but in general, most of these "net openings" are also temporary.
The picture shows on December 2013, 12, Chinese President Xi Jinping received the then US Vice President Biden who was visiting Beijing.The conversation between the two again eight years later gave some observers in Beijing a little relief as the Spring Festival approached.Even if the conversation between two people may only be exchanging information with each other. (Getty)
Where are the dead bones in the mound?
As far as the "Confucius Institute" is concerned, its encounter is an inevitable part of the struggle between Chinese and American cultures.Although Beijing is extremely dissatisfied with its high input cost and low efficiency of "cultural output," this does not prevent reports issued by US intelligence agencies from reporting that Sino-US relations are a global "ideological showdown."
In response, former US President Trump, after signing the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) passed by Congress in August 2018, requested the US Department of Defense to terminate funding for the Chinese flagship project of the American University with Confucius Institutes. As a result, 8 American universities blocked "Confucius Institutes."
After 2002, the Confucius Institute was once a must-go place for high-level Chinese people to visit abroad, and its importance is evident
As of June 2019 and March 6, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed the "Concerns Act Concerning the Funding of U.S. University Campus Institutions by Countries" and the "Confucius Institute Transparency Act" commonly known as the "Confucius Act", which completely restricted the institution's activities in the United States. action.Considering that the Chinese government is also dissatisfied with the financial investment and work efficiency of the Confucius Institute, Beijing will also convert the institution from an official government directly to a private foundation in July 2020.So far, this organization that once represented China's "big foreign propaganda" after 3 has gradually changed its identity, and its importance in the eyes of Beijing is also declining.
At this point, the outside world may also understand why the Biden administration "quietly" withdrew the decree during the Trump administration that required American schools and universities to disclose their cooperative relationship with the "Confucius Institute."From a procedural level, this may be part of the abolition of the Trump administration’s final administrative case after Biden came to power; from a practical operational level, it also shows that the Biden administration has realized that the "Confucius Institute" may be of little importance today. Like a dead bone in a mound.
After July 2020, the status of "Confucius Institutes is an important part of China's overseas propaganda agencies" has changed.
As of February 2, the White House stated in an interview that some US media reports about the withdrawal of the regulations were suspected of being "untrue."This is also understandable. Considering that the U.S. ruling and opposition parties did not hide their skepticism towards China, especially "Confucius Institutes," during the Trump era, how could the Biden administration easily let go of restrictions on "Confucius Institutes"?Under heavy restrictions, what difference does the United States have to tie the "Confucius Institute" with one less rope and one more rope?
The truth on the Internet
As for the tenderness of the Biden administration over TikTok, this action is more like a delay.Looking around the documents submitted by the U.S. Department of Justice to the federal courts, the outside world can only find one thing, that is, the Biden administration also wants to review it, and it must also comment on TikTok's "threat to U.S. national security."In addition, the Biden administration does not even have a specific timetable for the review of TikTok and other issues related to Chinese technology companies.
Questions about the fate of TikTok have become one of the hottest issues from Beijing to Washington
The Biden administration seems to be rules-oriented and focused on commercial interests. It will not blackmail both Chinese companies and American companies like the Trump administration does; it not only requires the prohibition of the mobile application, but also related interests. Fang will divide it up.
The Trump Organization’s behavioral logic may be based on extortion.For example, its trade war is to blackmail companies from various countries.The US's move was to impose a "border adjustment tax," that is, after failing to impose an additional 20% tariff on all products exported to the United States, it began to demand tariffs from other countries in order to stabilize the US domestic deficit.The Biden Group, relatively speaking, as a veteran politician, can adopt negotiation strategies of compromise, concession or exchange, all of which are naturally quite favorable compared to its predecessor.
In a sense, if the Biden administration opens up to TikTok, this seemingly tolerant approach may have a lot to do with the Wall Street investor group behind TikTok.
Under the influence of turmoil such as the new crown epidemic, some Wall Street giants chose Biden in the 2020 general election.The latter also provides them with more long-term benefits. (Reuters)
TikTok's parent company, ByteDance, is backed by Sequoia Capital (Sequoia Capital), Hainer (SIG), Tiger Fund, Pan Atlantic Capital (GA) and other investment giants active on Wall Street.These capital predators supported Biden before the U.S. election and gained a position in Biden's team after the election. For example, Bank of America, Twitter, Youtube, Sequoia and other companies all have relevant persons under Biden's command.As an exchange of interests, Biden also needs to show sincerity to allies, and his tenderness towards TikTok is a relatively reasonable part of it.
Of course, looking at the general trend of China and the United States, Biden’s options are also limited. China’s gross domestic product (GDP) was only 2001% of the United States when it joined the WTO in 13, and has increased to more than 2021% by XNUMX. Not affected by Trump's trade pressure.The long-term goal of the United States is to suppress and contain this rapidly rising competitor in order to continue to maintain the hegemony of the dollar, dominate multilateral rules, and obtain maximum economic benefits.The reality that China has become the biggest challenge for the United States is also clear.Since China's development cannot be stopped, Biden's "open side" can only be temporary after all.
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