Facts

  • The US House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party held its first hearing Tuesday, where it called for a concerted US government response to what it stated is Beijing's threat to US interests and values.
  • Committee members and high-profile witnesses spent more than three hours discussing issues such as espionage, human rights, the pandemic, Taiwan, TikTok, and trade with the aim of analyzing how the US can confront China's economic rise and authoritarian turn.
  • Two protesters — allegedly affiliated to the anti-war, left-wing group Code Pink — disrupted the opening remarks of former National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster by holding up signs reading "China is not our enemy" and "Stop Asian hate."
  • The commission — established by a bipartisan vote to run for the tenure of the 118th Congress — is geared towards designing the next generation of US policy towards China. It has support from both sides of the aisle and backing internationally.
  • Tensions have been escalating between Washington and Beijing over national security issues, with the US accusing the PRC of espionage, smuggling deadly fentanyl into the US, and belligerence in the South China Sea. This week, an official report also revealed that the US Dept. of Energy believes COVID-19 originated through a leak from a Chinese lab.
  • China's Foreign Ministry on Wednesday criticized the hearing, deeming it biased "cold war thinking" and urged Washington to move China-US relations away from political self interest. The ministry last week issued a statement describing the US as "hegemonic" and as an "abusive" force internationally.

Spin

Pro-establishment narrative

The hearing on Tuesday was a rare show of bipartisan agreement that highlighted the threat posed by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to the very existence of the US and its most fundamental values. The development also confirmed the reversal of decades of wishful thinking that China would eventually be liberalized if it were integrated into the global order. Americans do not want a Cold War 2.0, but they must protect themselves and the free world.

Establishment-critical narrative

Though China is clearly neither an existential threat, nor an enemy to the US, the new Republican-led Congress is pushing for war through the establishment of a committee that is spreading fear and lies about Beijing. The world needs cooperation and peace, not more conflict.

Nerd narrative

There is a 7% chance that there will be an active warfare between the United States and China before 2027, according to the Metaculus prediction community.


Establishment split

CRITICAL

PRO

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