Tibet bill puts the U.S.- China ties and international order at risk

05-22

Members of the Senate are trying to pass a bill on Tibet. As an amendment to the Tibet Policy Act of 2002, the Tibet Policy and Support Act lays out a road map for sanctions on Chinese officials "interfering" in Dalai Lama's succession and reincarnation. The legislation also calls for the establishment of a U.S. consulate in Tibet.

The U.S. has never saved its bullets in the anti-China campaign. With the clock ticking down on the 2020 presidential election, both Republicans and Democrats have further intensified fire against China's human rights conditions. Coming after the Uygur bill and Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act, the Tibet bill signals Washington's new round of attacks against China.

It's interesting to note that the closer it comes to elections, the more aggressive American politicians will act against China. It's a bipartisan consensus that the "China threat" is one of the most effective cards to play in the election bid. Despite their divergent political proposals, Republicans and Democrats always converge together on China-related issues.

For experienced American politicians, "human right conditions" is an easy tool among others to agitate American public's repugnant sentiments against China. The more aggressive they talk and act against China's "poor" human rights conditions, the easier they will build their images as "loyal defenders for freedom, rights, and democracy." In an effort to woo more voters, they are straining every nerve to display their "sincerity" in addressing the "concerning" situations in China's Xinjiang, Hong Kong, and Tibet by passing a slew of bills.

American lawmakers are playing China card for their selfish political gains at the sacrifice of the U.S. -China relationship and the international system of sovereign states. It's common sense that mutual trust is the basis of sound bilateral ties. Although Rules Committee Chairman Jim McGovern, also the initiator of the Tibet bill, expressed support for a "positive and productive" China-U.S. relationship ahead of the votes, the bill is blatant interfering into China's domestic affairs.

China has reiterated its non-tolerance on provocations against its sovereignty and dignity. The Tibet bill, along with other provocative legislations, will tremendously jeopardize the basis of the world's most important pair of bilateral relations. It's regrettable that votes-driven politicians, by approving the Tibet bill, are putting this hard-won achievement that was eventually gained after 18 months' slog at risk.

In an attempt to display its "sincere concerns" about human rights, Washington has instead displayed its hypocrisy, selfishness, and hegemonic mentality to the world. If the U.S. really cared about local people's conditions in Xinjiang, Tibet, and Hong Kong, it would have never used them as pawns in their dirty political game. As a superpower in the world, the U.S. seems to have not learned to respect other countries' justified rights and the rules-based international order.

History suggests that arrogance and selfishness will eventually backfire, especially in the era of global integration. The U.S. is shooting itself in the foot if it insists on prioritizing its shorted-run gains over the long-term interests of the international community.


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