U.S. signalling low expectations for APEC summit, says former U.S. defence official



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US President Joe Biden is sitting down with Chinese president xiin ping in San Francisco right now it comes as the Asia Pacific economic cooperation Summit gets underway and the two leaders first in-person meeting in more than a year comes at a time of global conflict and strain relations between the two

Countries here’s a look at what they had to say when they first got together there’s no substitute to face-to-face discussions I’ve always found our discussions straightforward and Frank and I’ve always appreciated them Mr President we know each other for a long time we haven’t always agreed which was

Not surprised anyone but our meetings have always been candid straightforward and useful I’ve never doubted what you’ve told me in terms of your candidate nature in which you speak I value our conversation because I think it’s Paramount that you and I understand each other clearly leader to leader with no misconceptions or miscommunication

Ation we have to ensure that competition does not Veer into conflict let’s dig into this story a little bit more and we’ve reached eldrid Al Eldridge Colby he’s a former US Deputy assistant secretary of defense for strategy and force development and reach them in Washington welcome to the program appreciate your time thanks

Hannah when you see these two powerhouses two world leaders sitting down finally after really big tensions and those tensions really grew in the past year in particular with that Chinese spy balloon is this you know starting to break those tensions uh no uh to put it bluntly in

Fact the administration itself is uh is is signaling very very low expectations for the summit and I mean look I’m I’m all in favor of jaw jaw’s better than war war as Winston Churchill said but of course the deterioration relationss followed the summit uh in Bali but of

Course these this deterioration has been going on several years it’s worth bearing in mind that that President Biden met with President Putin in June of 2021 just eight months before the invasion of Ukraine so I think at best what the administration is trying to achieve is a direct line to Xi Jinping

Who seems to be pretty clearly the key decision maker in the Chinese system but I think the expectations are quite low the Chinese are obviously in a period where their the economic challenges are pretty significant I think they’re looking to try to uh speak to America business Elites there’s a dinner that’s

Going on I believe later tonight where Shin ping is going to address a range of you know top American Business Leaders um but I think uh nothing has changed in China’s fundamental view the Wall Street Journal put it in a recent uh article that Xi Jinping regards the United

States as an existential threat to the People’s Republic so that reality is going to uh continue unfortunately does she not need you know the Americans though you look at the fact that it’s kind of soured now that he has really aligned himself with Vladimir Putin also you talk about the economic troubles uh

That China is now having does he kind of need the us a little bit um well the need sort of goes in both directions in fact some of the reporting the sourced to senior Administration officials was saying that that President Biden is going to ask Xin Ping’s help uh with restraining Iran and

The Middle East conflict I believe a Hamas delegation was in Beijing or is heading toing shortly and more broadly that to try to avoid a crisis or confrontation because the administration is focused on Ukraine the Middle East and the president impending apparent re-election campaign so it’s true that the Chinese economy is

Weak and that’s probably one of the Tactical reasons why shining is here uh is to try to um avoid some of the um economic uh containment or or sanction measures that that China doesn’t want but I think fundamentally the the the relationship will remain at best on a s of confrontational trajectory and

Possibly conflictual God forbid yeah you know is it important that the US mends the relationship a little bit because right now you you even see Canada Canada is starting to look to other suppliers when it comes to Goods uh Services those types of things and it appears that the

Americans are doing the same type of thing as well look I don’t think this relationship is going to be mended we’re not going to go back I I think there’s an element of that that has a significant influence in American thinking particularly in business Elites some parts of the democratic party um

But there’s no going back and I don’t think the Chinese are open to it in fact the Chinese are the US uh China commission a special congressionally chartered commission just reported the Chinese are taking a wave of steps to insulate their economy from potential Western sanctions and to decouple some

People talk about how we shouldn’t decouple and I think there’s there’s good arguments on what’s pretty clear is that China is trying to decouple uh and and also trying to increase its leverage over not only the American but other Western such as Canadian economies so I

Think you know my own view is that we need to operate with China from a position of strength I do think some of the rhetoric in the United States is a little is is overheated so I think the basic sort of aspiration of the B Administration approach which is to get

Into a situation with China where there could be compettition without uh confrontation without conflict is the right one but the way they’re going about it is not I think at best it’s ignoring the and at worst I think there is a concern that xiin ping is going to

See President Biden he’s been sinking in the polls here in the United States there are a lot of reports that I mean to put it generously he’s not as sharp as he might once have been and you know you have to wonder why did President Putin decide to go into Ukraine uh why

Did uh uh Premier kushev decide to push in Berlin and Cuba in 1961 one of the reasons was because he met John F Kennedy at the Vienna Summit and decided this was an opportune moment after dealing with Dwight Eisenhower so I think there are risks involved um so the

Goal of stability in daytont I share but the the way we’re going about it I think is is imprudent at best yeah that’s a fascinating way to look at it I hadn’t really thought about that um so I guess one of the things in sitting down and

Trying to at least be able to have a conversation because I’m sure you know as well our prime minister currently you know the the ties are so bad with China that they don’t even it doesn’t appear that they even try to set a meeting with

Them I don’t know if you can com comment on that but is that detrimental to a country like Canada well veryy look the way I think about and what I say to Europeans for instance is if the United States is worried about China countries like Canada should be absolutely terrified

And nobody made a stronger effort to reach out to Canada than than prime minister Trudeau and you can see the dismissive huy way uh that uh chairman she treated the prime minister in Bali for instance that that is a foraste that is something that Asian countries Southeast Asian countries are very

Familiar with and that’s one of the reasons why China has become quite a bit less popular in the region but the fact is that China’s very very very powerful they are facing economic headwinds but their military buildup has not stopped they are by far the world’s largest

Industrial power so we need to approach China from a position of strength and again if that’s true for America it’s an order of magnitude more true for for Canada Elbridge Colby uh really enjoyed this discussion thank you for coming on the program pleasure

The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in San Francisco is the first face-to-face meeting in a year between U.S. President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping amidst tensions between the two superpowers. Former Pentagon official Elbridge Colby says the expectations for this meeting are low to repair the strained relationship.’

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  1. The foreign relations of Asia and Pacific countries with China and the USA are under scrutiny by the people of each country. The South East Asia and West Pacific countries are watching these two countries how they play. lie and fool each other for their interests knowing that they (the USA and China) are trying to win their loyalty in this time where US economy is in disarray and.there is de-dollarization and they are losing in Ukraine while China is preceding with the BRI in spite of internal economic crisis.

  2. Terrible speaker to invite to talk about an economic gathering which APEC is about. I don’t mind this gentlemen kept going on with position of strength against China, sure, but do clarify what is the tool or the strength you have against China? Simply be able to say the words ‘we disagree and oppose you’ is position of strength? Those are just words, you need to stick to economic and military might, which both USA have, but does Canada has the same? How naive.

  3. XI JINPING: "There are two options for China and the US in the era of global transformations unseen in a century:

    One is to enhance solidarity and cooperation and join hands to meet global challenges and promote global security and prosperity; and the other is to cling to the zero-sum mentality, provoke rivalry and confrontation, and drive the world towards turmoil and division.

    The two choices point to two different directions that will decide the future of humanity and Planet Earth."

  4. USA still having a good laugh about how they played Trudeau into kidnapping a Chinese citizen for them. Only to release her after China retaliated. What a waste of time that was.

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