Daydreaming for US to expect China to cooperate on US interests after provocations
Published: Aug 09, 2022 08:16 PM
Illustration: Chen Xia/GT

Illustration: Chen Xia/GT

Speaking about China's move to suspend cooperation with the US to combat narcotics trafficking, including illicit fentanyl, a part of countermeasures announced in response to US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's reckless visit to the Taiwan island, Rahul Gupta, director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, claimed on Monday the decision was "unacceptable" and would have global implications.

Since when has the US been concerned about the welfare of the world? It's laughable when such remarks come from US officials. Previously, the National Security Council spokesman John Kirby accused Beijing's suspension of cooperation in efforts to combat climate change of "not just punishing the US," but "punishing the whole world."

How should China react after being rudely provoked by the US despite repeated warnings? What the US expects and takes for granted is that there should be no countermeasures and China should remain smiling to continue bilateral cooperation. But, don't be kidding. When the trust for cooperation evaporates because the US side trampled on China's core interests, China has no obligation or responsibility to still cooperate with the US on issues concerning American interests.  

Beijing last week announced the cancellation or suspension of a series of cooperation channels with Washington, including China-US theater commanders talk, exchanges on climate change, and illegal immigration repatriation and drug control. 

"The US has been attempting to package Pelosi's highly provocative Taiwan trip as an 'unofficial' and 'peaceful visit' by an ordinary US congresswoman, then questioning China 'how can you make such an overreaction?' This is a set of false narratives made up by the arrogant US for the fallout caused by its own overbearing and reckless moves," said Shen Yi, a professor of international relations at Fudan University. The US is behaving like a "giant baby" who blames the one he bullies as "a bad guy" after maliciously provoking others, Shen noted. It's obviously a hooligan logic. 

Frankly speaking, it's daydreaming for the US to expect and demand China to continue cooperation on issues of US' concerns while it infringes on China's core interests. Cooperation requires both sides to meet each other halfway and show respect to each other's concerns and core interests. When the US indulged the country's No.3 political figure to land in the Taiwan island in serious violation of the one-China principle, it's the US that lifted a hammer to shatter the cornerstone of China-US cooperation. 

China's suspension of cooperation with the US in related fields will undoubtedly make the report card of the Democrats poorer, as problems in these areas are where the US needs more support from China. Among them, narcotics trafficking and climate change are key issues for the Biden administration and the Democratic Party to capitalize on to win votes. Therefore, China's countermeasures are a real bitter pill for the US to swallow.

China's suspension of cooperation with the US doesn't affect China's participation in multilateral cooperation and global governance in fields such as drug control and climate change. China will undoubtedly continue its zero-tolerance attitude toward drugs, rigorously combating drug production, trafficking and other kinds of drug crimes in strict accordance with the law. But how much US officials and politicians will devote to solving America's drug abuse remains to be seen. After all, as the biggest producer and user of fentanyl drugs in the world, the US has a fentanyl problem more rampant than other countries, but it has not officially scheduled fentanyl substances permanently yet. Besides, over the past few years, it seems American politicians have more interest in passing the buck to China than seriously addressing the domestic fentanyl problem. 

Statistics show that the ongoing overdose epidemic driven by fentanyl claimed more than 100,000 lives in the US in the past year. The fentanyl problem is caused by US' weak and inadequate supervision on drugs. "In the past, when the China-US relationship was good, China was willing to do the US a favor over the issue, but after the US has trampled on China's interest, why should China still treat the US as a worthy partner?" asked Shen.   

The US has long been arrogant and provocative over the Taiwan question. China's countermeasures in response to Pelosi's trip will let the US know the nails on China's countermeasure stick could make the US feel real pain this time.