On Thursday, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo criticized the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and its leader Xi Jinping, saying the U.S. must work to induce change in “totalitarian” China or else “the CCP will erode our freedoms and subvert the rules-based order that our societies have worked so hard to build.”
In a speech at the Richard Nixon Presidential Library in Yorba Linda, Calif., Pompeo criticized decades of U.S. policy that have allowed China to prosper while ignoring abuses by the CCP. Pompeo invoked Nixon’s remarks, noting Nixon once said he feared he created a “Frankenstein” by opening the world to China.
“Next year marks half a century since Dr. Kissinger’s secret mission to China, and the 50th anniversary of President Nixon’s trip isn’t too far away in 2022,” Pompeo began his China remarks. “The world was much different then. We imagined engagement with China would produce a future with bright promise of comity and cooperation.”
Pompeo said that instead of cooperation, China under CCP leadership has committed ‘trade abuses that cost American jobs” and is “increasingly authoritarian at home.”
“We have to keep in mind that the CCP regime is a Marxist-Leninist regime,” Pompeo said. “General Secretary Xi Jinping is a true believer in a bankrupt totalitarian ideology. It’s this ideology that informs his decades-long desire for global hegemony of Chinese communism.”
Pompeo then listed a number of efforts by President Donald Trump’s administration to hold China accountable
“Just this week, we announced the closure of the Chinese consulate in Houston because it was a hub of spying and intellectual property theft,” Pompeo said. “We reversed, two weeks ago, eight years of cheek-turning with respect to international law in the South China Sea.”
Pompeo’s remarks referred to a number of recent U.S. moves to counter China, including a Wednesday ordering China’s Houston consulate closed and rejecting Chinese claims to islands and territorial waters in the South China Sea.
“But our approach can’t just be about getting tough,” Pompeo said. “That’s unlikely to achieve the outcome that we desire. We must also engage and empower the Chinese people – a dynamic, freedom-loving people who are completely distinct from the Chinese Communist Party.”
Pompeo added that “communists almost always lie” and said “the biggest lie that they tell is to think that they speak for 1.4 billion people who are surveilled, oppressed, and scared to speak out. Quite the contrary. The CCP fears the Chinese people’s honest opinions more than any foe.”
Pompeo called on other nations to reject CCP influence within their borders.
“The United Nations, NATO, the G7 countries, the G20, our combined economic, diplomatic, and military power is surely enough to meet this challenge if we direct it clearly and with great courage,” Pompeo said. “Maybe it’s time for a new grouping of like-minded nations, a new alliance of democracies. We have the tools. I know we can do it. Now we need the will.”