The Washington Posts editorial board warned readers on Monday to take seriously a threat made by Communist Chinese leader Xi Jinping that countries who attempt to “bully” China will have their “heads bashed bloody.”
“Those who worry that hawks in Washington are drumming up an unnecessary and dangerous new cold war with China ought to take the time to read the address delivered in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square on Thursday by Chinese President Xi Jinping,” the op-ed began.
The op-ed referenced comments Xi made during Chinese celebrations of the 100th anniversary of the founding of its ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in which he said, “The Chinese people will never allow any foreign forces to bully, oppress or enslave us. Anyone who dares try to do that will have their heads bashed bloody against a Great Wall of steel forged by over 1.4 billion Chinese people.”
The Post’s op-ed noted a discrepancy between the Chinese government’s official English transcript of Xi’s speech and his actual spoken remarks.
“According to the official English text distributed by the foreign ministry, Mr. Xi added, ‘Anyone who would attempt to do so will find themselves on a collision course with a great wall of steel,'” the Post’s editorial board wrote. “But those who listened heard him say opponents would ‘have their heads bashed bloody.’ As The Post’s David Crawshaw and Alicia Chen reported, the phrase was soon trending on the social media platform Weibo, unhindered by the regime’s army of censors.”
The Post warned that Chinese threats of bloodshed should be taken especially seriously in relation to Chinese posturing towards Taiwan, which governs itself as an independent nation but which China claims as part of its territory.
“Mr. Xi, repeating a stock phrase, said the aim was ‘peaceful national reunification,’ but he sounded more convincing in promising ‘resolute action to utterly defeat any attempt toward ‘Taiwan independence’’— words that resonate with China’s recent escalation of military incursions into Taiwan’s airspace,” the Post wrote. “Having concentrated power and essentially declared himself a ruler-for-life, Mr. Xi appears to regard the subjugation of what is now a robust democracy as a legacy to aim for, along with the crushing of the Uyghurs and Hong Kong’s autonomy.”
At the conclusion of the op-ed, the Post said, “None of this means the United States should seek confrontation with China. But Mr. Xi’s words ought to underline that, at least under its present ruler, China will likely pose a growing menace to its neighbors, to the democratic world and to human freedom more generally.”