torsdag 23. mai 2024

Xi Jinping takes off the mask: The Beijing tyrant has spent 12 years wrecking China’s image

Xi Jinping’s recent European tour was an unprecedented spectacle in international affairs: an Asian leader was arriving as representative of a great power to lesser nations of an anxious continent. China’s strongman landed in Paris on May 5, amid diplomatic pleasantries. Behind the gift exchange, including fine French cognac, any hopes French President Emmanuel Macron harbored that the visit might reverse the deterioration in relations between Beijing and Paris, and the broader European Union, were instantly dashed. Xi cut the figure of an aggressive tough guy. In Paris, he took on the subject of Europe’s most devastating war since 1945, saying, “We oppose using the Ukraine crisis to cast blame, smear a third country, and incite a new Cold War.” He made clear that Beijing’s robust support for Moscow in the third year of Russia’s renewed aggression against Ukraine isn’t something he is willing to compromise or negotiate.

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