Regardless of a trade war with China, they will not help us with N. Korea. Indeed, China does have some sway over N. Korea. Indeed, China has used that to play us many times over. For most of Trump’s first year in office, he held off on his campaign promise to implement tariffs on China to reduce our astronomical trade deficit. (China exports 4 times as much to US, as we export to China, year after year.) This was because China was promising to convince N. Korea to agree to a nuclear deal.
However, China accomplished nothing during that time as Trump was holding off on the tariffs. Yet, when Trump started making plans to follow through with his promise, suddenly N. Korea came to the negotiating table and a deal was made.
Despite this, Lyle J. Goldstein with the National Interest claims that Trump must now chose between a trade war with China, and the N. Korean deal. Where exactly has Mr. Goldstein been this last year? Trump already tried that! It didn’t work! So he went forward with the tariffs, and now we have a N. Korean deal. It’s not complicated.
Despite this glaringly obvious reality, it’s likely that Mr. Goldstein is not the only one who will make this claim. If this deal does fall apart, don’t be surprised when most of mainstream media ignores the facts presented above and blames Trump’s tariffs.
After all, this is the same mainstream media that ignored decades of terrible trade policies that have empowered China, only to blame Trump leaving TPP for the rise of China.
China is the greatest geopolitical threat to our superpower since the fall of the Soviet Union. And what makes China a particularly unique threat is their remarkable ability to get many of our politicians and opinion leaders to shill for them.
What Trump has accomplished, however, is getting them to play their N. Korean card. It was a big card, a scary card, but now it’s played, and China can’t take it back. We now know that China has far too much to lose from a denuclearized N. Korea to ever let that happen, despite what they say. But we also know now that there are no N. Korean consequences to standing up to China.
Trump can’t denuclearize N. Korea, and China wouldn’t even if they could. If anything is going to get N. Korea to denuclearize, it will be S. Korea. It’s a long shot, but maybe, just maybe, S. Korea can work out some kind of loose unification, and with that, just maybe, a loosely united Korean state could see the gradual extension of freedoms to N. Koreans and effectively pacify the threat. N. Korea would still be a nuclear power, but they’d be no more a threat than S. Korea. We can only hope.
From Fareed Zakaria of all people! Trump is Right: China’s a trade cheat If you have access to Wapo. If you are not subscribed to them, I recommend opening them in a browser you don’t normally use. You get 2 free articles, but it won’t notice you’ve used your two if you open it in a different browser, like Internet Explorer if you normally use Chrome.