The New Cold War heats up, and it’s not mainly about the tariffs

The new American law, enacted on Wednesday and called the Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act, says the secretary of state, who is now Mike Pompeo, must within 90 days give Congress a report that lays out the level of access to Tibetan areas that Chinese officials grant Americans.

The secretary is then supposed to determine which Chinese officials are responsible for placing limits on foreigners traveling to Tibet and bar them from getting visas to the United States or revoke any active visas they have. The secretary must make this assessment annually for five years.

The goal of the law is to force Chinese officials to relent on the limits they impose on travel to Tibetan areas.

Here is more from Edward Wong at the NYT.  It is unlikely that this is a good idea.


>It is unlikely that this is a good idea.

Well, of course not. Three years ago, sure. But not now. Obviously.

"..says the secretary of state, who is now Mike Pompeo" sniffs the Old Gray Lady.

Tibetans have not sacked a Chinese capital in over twelve hundred years.

May be worth recalling just how long the Chinese memory can be.

Poor comparisons. Tibet was ruled by non-Maoist communists through the early fifties. Also note that northern barbarians took over twice (Yuan and Qing dynasties), but there is no animosity against Mongolians.

In short, the chicoms are sore because Tibet never embraced Mao, and because they hold religious leaders above CCP. This is a close parallel to monarchs of Europe being really suspicious of and hostile to anyone questioning the divine rights of kings. sitesine giriş yapabilirsiniz.

"The secretary is then supposed to determine which Chinese officials are responsible for placing limits on foreigners traveling to Tibet and bar them from getting visas to the United States or revoke any active visas they have."
I would like to name the following individuals as "Chinese officials [who] are responsible for placing limits on foreigners traveling to Tibet": General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China Xi Jinping, Premier of the State Council Li Keqiang, Vice Premier of the State Council Liu He, Director of the Office of Foreign Affairs Yang Jiechi and Minister of Public Security Zhao Kezhi.

The U.S. should spend more energy leading by example. By doing.

If, for instance, your actual fear is loss of technological leadership, focus on expanding that.

I agree with Tyler that an extra conflict regarding Tibet is unlikely to improve the American future.

Conor Sen:

"It’s not hard to imagine a 2030 with:
1) an inclusive/“open” America in ascendance again
2) America implementing a Green New Deal
3) China in secular decline"

Just do it.


There's nothing to fear but fear itself.

I dunno. You ever seen a grizzly?

Sounds like a nightmare

Let me get this straight, you would rather not have an ascending America, if someone is calling it "green."

That is the kind of loser mentality that is bringing brexit to the britons.

Me, I look forward to the cheap solar roofs and electric sports cars. They are coming, just short extensions on trend.

Lack of rooftop solar is not the problem - lack of sunshine is. Your head is where the sun don't shine.

And the US is the greenist of greens - we are the only nation to reduce our total CO2 emmisions every year for the last twenty plus years, so shut the phook up you lefty.

You're half-right right in engineering sense. When solar panels are expensive and precious you want to use them in the most efficient way, in large-scale deployment. But I just read a prediction by the Dutch government that solar could fall to $0.01 per kilowatt hour by 2030. When panels are that cheap you put them everywhere.

And that's the weird thing about your anti-green rant.

Conservatives have put themselves in the position of opposing technological progress, and set themselves against enjoying those fruits of an industrial society.

You oppose what clearly works because you associated with the other side.

That is really stupidly partisan.

Things in the West can be a bit messy. This is (probably) how the West gets to the point where there is enough of a consensus to make changes to strengthen technological leadership, and leadership in other areas. Before that happens, people in the West need to feel threatened (Xi Jinping seems to agree that you need enemies, although I think you need good ones, as the jihadists haven’t had the same salutary effects on the West as the Soviets). Hell, if the trade war is ridiculously successful, China will liberalize its economy in ways that make it even more competitive vis a vis the rest of the world. This is just the beginning of the US starting to reckon with China’s rise as a geopolitical and economic power, and it will be a long process, of which all this is merely a blip.

I am of the opinion that the trade war is primarily self-harming for Americans.

And it's strange, right. In this case it is the right that has decided it is more important to divide the pie than to grow it.

Backwards looking battles about steel in an information age.

You are the token lefty here. Every blog has at least one to keep singing the dogma. Do you still have your little Maoist book?

I'm really pretty center-right, but I don't see Mao in every solar panel (or Tesla!)|

A Tesla Roadster with a MAOIST license plate would be pretty funny.

I did check my state and "INDIV 1" was free, but I decided that joke was too topical. By the time the plate arrived the indictments will just read "Trump."

I mean, the fact that an American administration made coal a focus for economic development in 2017 sounds like parody ..

Your comment is the parody. Trump didn't give coal an advantage, just took away the penalties. Let it die a natural death, the market will take care of that.

If coal is allowed to transfer to the public purse the externality costs it imposes on society through pollution, then it is being subsidized. Relaxing regulation allows coal to avoid internalizing those costs.

Liar, they tried direct bailouts, picking coal as their future. Morons.

"The Trump administration has shelved a plan to invoke wartime emergency powers to justify multibillion-dollar bailouts for economically struggling coal and nuclear plants — at least for the time being."

It's remarkable to me that the US, whose Diversity we are all assured is its Greatest Strength, is always pushing Tibetan, Jewish, Kosovar, and Kurdish ethno-nationalism but Anglo, American, Polish, Hungarian or Austrian ethno-nationalism is the first step to Dachau.

It is different. Tibet is under illegal Red Chinese occupation. There is no moral difference between what Red China does in Tibet and what Nazi Germany did in Poland and Czechoslovakia or what the Soviets did in the Baltic States, Poland, Finland and the Eastern Block as a whole. It is 1938 again and we, Westerners, have an important decision to make. Will we appease totalitarism again?

We appeased communist totalitarianism very successfully in 1941-45.

If it is to be opposed it might be wise to oppose it on an issue where the West has vital interests at stake.

Doing so would "normalize" communist butchers. We must make it clear to them that their regime is illegitimate and that regime change is our priority.

Trump's regime is illegitimate: just ask any Democrat. Accordingly regime change seems to be the priority for the FBI, CNN, NYT, and the like.

Trump was dully elected.

we see what you did there

I just noticed now.

American nationalism is a bigger problem than nationalism in a small country because America is so powerful--it's the same reason that Chinese authoritarianism is a bigger problem than authoritarianism in a small country. Moreover, American nationalism usually manifests in the form of "nationalism-for-me-but-not-for-you." If another country sanctioned us over our travel restrictions on foreigners like this article is discussing, for example, we would surely consider that an unfair attack on our national sovereignty.

Nationalism in Poland, Hungary, etc. is a problem because they are part of the European Union and their nationalist positions are weakening the entire European Union. Basically, they are unfairly claiming the benefits of the European Union while refusing to share in the costs. If they left the European Union, no one would care about their nationalism (just like no one cares about nationalism in Belarus, Albania, etc.)

Spoken like a true globalist! It seems like the People are turning against you. How does that make you feel?

I am fine with nationalism as long as it is applied consistently (i.e. the US doesn't try to tell China who to let in their country if they aren't going to let China do the same, Poland and Hungary quit the EU and don't expect Germany to allow free movement to their citizens if they aren't going to allow free movement to others, etc.)

I agree it should be applied consistently. Hungary was reacting against the refugee policies of Germany. If Germany wants a stable EU, they probably should reconsider their refugee policies. I don't agree that Hungary is free loading, because accepting refugees is not an inherent cost of running a trade bloc, just an arbitrary policy of the leader of the EUs most prominent member state.

That was quite the bait-and-switch by the EU. The Europeans thought it was about free movement among EU members. In fact, it was about the freedom of the whole world to move to the EU!

Nobody cares what you think - you are a Chinese spy.

We will fight to the death - except for the useless, dead weight lefties throwing darts at their fellow Americans. We can handle them.

The US has a different, curated sort of diversity ( not as curated as Canada or Australia, but still pretty curated). That kind of diversity is a strength, especially as there is an underlying bourgeois sensibility among immigrants to the US.

Seems like big nothingburger if you ask me. Visa restrictions aimed at what, a few dozen Chinese officials? Not exactly the Cuban Missile Crisis.

I don't agree that Congress should pass laws which will clearly be ineffective, while giving both the deep state and politicians more arbitrary power. But then again, I expect the Executive to be minimally competent, so it's not an optimal world.

We should expel all Chinese nationals from US universties - then their parents will sit up and pay attention.

Kowtow is always the best idea.

No, it is not.

It's amazing how an administration with the signature position that countries should have the unfettered right to control who comes in now wants to sanction another country for restricting what foreigners can come in. Not to mention, our ally Israel has had a policy of denying visas to visit the West Bank for foreign BDS supporters for years, and we have been entirely quiet on that policy. No wonder other countries think all of our talk about values is just a fig leaf, where the US and its allies get to do whatever they want and then insist its rivals are violating human rights when they do the same thing.

I am all for opening up China, but this should be done by reciprocally opening up ourselves too. For example, in 2014, the US and China both allowed the other country's citizens 10-year visas. This is how opening up should work. Trump started rolling back this policy by cancelling many visas granted to Chinese students and scientists under the former policy for bogus national security grounds, so we can't really be surprised when China starts denying visas to foreigners on bogus national security grounds too.

I knew someone would come along and complain that this policy distracts from the goal of singling out Israel for opprobrium. Not that that obsessive focus on opposition to Israel and no one else is indicative of anti-Semitism, of course.

As for BDS supporters, surely they have no ground on which to object when their own tactics of exclusion are turned back upon them.

I don't lose any sleep over Tibet, China, Zanzibar, or Denmark.

But I am deeply troubled by our manifestly dysfunctional U.S. Government.

Somebody/faction in Congress wants a simple report on Chinese travel restrictions in Tibet -- Congress could do that internally or simply ask the State Dept -- but "they" decide a new "law" is required to bludgeon the Executive Branch on this trivial issue ??

This is a Congress that can't even enact a formal Federal Budgt over past 22 years, as required by their own Congressional law. Outrageous.

Forget Tibet -- America has huge mountains of domestic problems.

Free Tibet from Chinese autocracy! It’s One of the most spiritually fertile places in the universe!

The US recognizes and accepts China’s flimsy historical claims to Tibet (based on the Tibetans accepting Mongolian sovereignty over Tibet and the Chinese government being the inheritor of Kublai Khan’s Mongolian dynasty). It’s as if the UK occupied Greenland because of King Canute.

Given that major concession (along with that on Taiwan), anything after that is window-dressing.

Seems just as valid as China accepting that the American Southwest is the US's, and does not rightfully belong to Mexico. China owns Tibet because they conquered it. Really simple as that.

At least the Southwest was contiguous. The absorption of former republic Hawaii and the purchase of Alaska are truly blots on the US self-image.

We stole Atzlan fair and square. Besides, it was part of Spain for a long time and part of Mexico for only a couple of decades, and quite empty of Mexicans. Now it's ours, so shut the phook up about it.

Throw back to the political wheel spinning on Jews in the Soviet Union.

"It is unlikely that this is a good idea."

Then, what would be a better way to open up Tibet? Military options would seem to cause lots of suffering and death. This is a non-military option. We are told that non-military options like trade sanctions are too blunt, and we should instead target the sanctions towards the specific government officials involved. This option is targeted to specific government officials. Finally, we are often told not to impose our own values on others. But, in this case, the Tibetans want to allow more foreigners. Beijing is the one imposing its will on the Tibetans. If one agrees with Beijing's view that governments should have authority to block journalists and others from discovering and reporting on human suffering, and truth more generally, then just say so. But, if one disagrees with that view, then what are one's preferred options for limiting those government powers?

By the way, travel to Tibet increases engagement and trade. If Trump barred Americans from traveling to Tibet as part of a nationalist America-first policy, wouldn't we oppose such a ban? Do restrictions on foreign engagement suddenly become better when the Chinese government imposes them? I would think that the "Cold War" measures are the ones that restrict foreign travel and engagement, not the ones designed to lift the restrictions.

A successful decapitation nuclear attack against Red China could change the balance of power enough to force the communists to the negotiation table.

BC provides an intelligent, persuasive comment in response to Tyler's sneering, conclusory one. I haven't studied the issue myself, but I will go forward, as is so often the case, confident that Tyler is wrong.

A successful decapitation nuclear attack against Brazil would wipe the these violent, smelly, filthy animals off the planet for good.

No, it would not. Brazilians are clean (according to experts, we are the people that makes more bathes for day) and peace-loving. Unlike Red China, Brazil never fought a war of aggression.

Not about Tibet, The idea is to collect tariffs, why lie? Just hit them with more tariffs whenever the commies are using the double standard. They ae, after all, commies who do not practice free trade, by definition.

Comments for this post are closed