Source: Global Time
China, US Photo: GT
The US unreasonably asked China to close its consulate in Houston, giving staff there only 72 hours to leave the country. US insanity is shocking. In addition to the embassies, China and the US have five consulates in each other’s country (not including the US consulate in Hong Kong and Macao), according to the principle of reciprocity. The US is suddenly demanding the closing of one of the Chinese consulates, and normally, this resets the two sides’ principle of reciprocity.
Isn’t the US deliberately destroying the China-US relations?
Washington has imposed various restrictions on Chinese diplomats and journalists based in the US since 2019. A group of Chinese media outlets are defined as “foreign missions,” and some Chinese journalists were expelled from the country. This has hurt China-US personnel exchanges more deeply. Closing the Chinese consulate in Houston is a serious escalation of the situation, and foretells the development of China-US relations.
Closing each other’s consulates are consuming. Once a country starts it, it is easy for the other to retaliate. It hardly benefits the country that instigates such dispute. Thus, it is difficult to explain the mind-set of the US.
Based on what the Global Times learns, the US has no justification to close the Chinese consulate in Houston. A rumor goes that due to the COVID-19, China has refused to allow US diplomats to return to China, and the US’ latest move was meant to retaliate.
But this is fake news. Some people are trying to pass the buck to China. US diplomats are allowed to return to China, and the two countries have smoothly implemented their agreement on the preventive measures against the COVID-19. The US State Department declared that the US closed the consulate to “protect American intellectual property and Americans’ private information.” This is a lame excuse.
It is far more difficult for China and the US to blame each other’s diplomatic institutions or diplomats than for the US and the former Soviet Union to do so during the Cold War era. China and the US share one of the largest bilateral trades worldwide, and personnel exchanges were very active under normal circumstances. The two sides need to set up multiple consulates to manage such exchanges. The COVID-19 has led to a huge decline in China-US personnel exchanges. By closing the Chinese consulate in Houston, is the US declaring that it no longer hopes to improve its epidemic situation and restore personnel exchanges between China and the US?
That’s why we say the latest US move is crazy. Many people believe that this is another way the Trump administration creates China-US tensions and helps his reelection efforts. The US is trying to blame everything on China and to make US voters, who do not understand China well, believe in Washington’s words. The November presidential election is driving Washington mad.
This time, the world knows that the US has opened up a new battlefield against China. While strongly condemning the US, China’s Foreign Ministry also said China will make firm responses if the US does not correct its mistakes. There are many countermeasures that China can take. Analysts generally believe that the international diplomatic community will not be surprised if China closes one of the US consulates in China.
The US mentioned “intellectual property” and “private information,” which seems to imply the Chinese consulate in Houston has participated in illegal intelligence activities against the US. The US has lost its credibility. The size of Chinese consulates in the US is not larger than the needs of daily routine work. None of these consulates has thousands of diplomats and employees, like the US consulate in Hong Kong and Macao. It is not a secret that the US regards its consulate in Hong Kong and Macao as a fortress to attack China.
The US has opened a diplomatic battlefield that it is doomed to lose. The US presidential election is costing the major power relations in the 21st century. Mankind, who desires peace, stability and development, has to pay for it. Individuals and political groups’ frenzied harm of the US and the world’s public interest is losing control.