The New York Times is reporting that senior Biden Administration officials held at least six meetings with Chinese officials “in which the Americans presented intelligence showing Russia’s troop buildup around Ukraine and beseeched the Chinese to tell Russia not to invade.” It is no secret that Chinese leader Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin are chummy, and American officials hoped that Xi could stifle any ideas of a Russian invasion of Ukraine.
However, each time American officials contacted their Chinese counterparts asking for assistance, Chinese officials – including the Chinese foreign minister and the Chinese ambassador to the United States – “rebuffed” the pleas. Their response always maintained that Chinese officials didn’t believe an invasion was planned.
American intelligence found in December that members of the Chinese government had shared the information they gleaned from these six meetings with the Russian president. One official even accused American leaders of “trying to sow discord;” other intelligence lead to assertions that “China would not try to impede Russian plans and actions.”
Although Russia and China have had their fair share of bickering throughout time, the two countries recently signed an energy pact which critics say would assist Putin in the event of Western energy sanctions. China did something similar when sanctions were placed on Russia after they took Crimea in 2014.
Senator Marco Rubio spoke about a somewhat different issue in President Biden, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and other U.S. officials speaking publicly about the anticipated invasion two weeks ago: “They (the Chinese) will not come out and celebrate . . . (the Chinese) will want Putin’s support when they take Taiwan.”
However, the alleged feeding of American intelligence to Russia would give the appearance that China and Russia are getting along, if not become allies on the world stage.
Although America has always been leery of placing a great deal of trust in Beijing and the Chinese government, this report is just another example of how the Chinese can’t be a trusted ally on the world’s stage. The Biden Administration’s sharing of this intelligence with Chinese officials is another in a long list of gaffes that aren’t just making America look weak, but could be viewed as committing acts not conducive to the safety of America.
The Times also reported that American officials “say the ties between China and Russia appear stronger than at any time since the Cold War.”
Although China has recognized Ukraine as a sovereign nation for many years, China has in effect stood back and tacitly allowed the Ukrainian invasion by Russia. However, Ian Bremmer, Eurasia Group President, says China is privately calling for Russia and Ukraine Peace Talks.
The United States began pursuing a more diplomatic relationship with China in the 1970s when then-President Richard Nixon traveled to China in a historic trip. However, although initial efforts at a successful Chinese-American relationship were established, over time, mutual distrust between the two nations have slowly unraveled the partnership. This was evident publicly when Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi told American Olympians to demur from discussing politics when interviewed during the Games. She referred to the Chinese as “ruthless.”
Internet rumors abound that China’s government has its news outlets as well as social media platforms to refrain from posting “anything critical of Russia or favorable of NATO.”
Even though American officials are well aware of the discord between our nation and China, members of the Biden Administration still shared our intelligence with foreign officials. Even though their intentions were likely pure, Biden Administration officials should have found another way to solicit the assistance of the Chinese government rather than sharing our intel. America’s reputation on the world stage is reeling, particularly after the chaotic American withdrawal from Afghanistan. As a world superpower, we can no longer allow other countries to make us appear weak or foolish. America’s leaders must show the strength we’ve always been known for, or the Russian invasion of the Ukraine is only the beginning of worldwide discord.