Trump’s ‘modus operandi’ is ultimatums & threats but China’s Xi Jinping ‘didn’t fall for the bait’
US President Donald Trump brought tough talk and threats to hammer out concessions in the trade war with Beijing, but Chinese leader Xi Jinping refused to play by his rules, an analyst told RT.
“Trump’s modus operandi is to issue ultimatums, insults, and even threats to put his adversary in negotiations off their game psychologically,” Jack Rasmus, professor of political economy at Saint Mary’s College of California, told RT.
It’s also his way of gaining control of the bargaining agenda from the start. The opponent responds to the hyperbole and Trump negotiates from there. He plans to accept something less but starts from the extreme.
When the US president manages to get some concessions from foreign partners, he “lies and exaggerates what was achieved” in order to impress voters at home, the economist said, adding that Trump wants to demonstrate that he is “tough” on foreign governments.
“That’s the essence of his economic nationalism.”
In fact, President Trump’s stance on foreign policy is shaped by “the neocons and hardliners” on his team, like National Security Advisor John Bolton and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who “put the idea in his ear,” Rasmus said.
The president tried to employ his usual tough talk in the ongoing trade war, but China is not playing by his rules.
China’s President Xi Jinping thus far has not fallen for the ‘bait’, as they say. Were he to respond in kind, Trump would only intensify his demands and ultimatums.
The US and China have been locked in a trade war after President Trump slapped tariffs on Chinese goods, while accusing Beijing of taking advantage of the US economy.
China retaliated in kind, but stressed it stands ready for talks “in an equal matter” and does not want a proper trade war. However, should Washington go on “escalating the trade frictions, we will respond resolutely and fight until the end,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang told reporters on Monday.
In December, both sides agreed to not enact more tariffs, paving the way for negotiations. Several rounds of talks followed, but no agreement was reached and Trump has threatened Beijing with new tariff hikes.
On Monday, Trump said the tariffs will go up immediately if Xi Jinping does not attend the G20 event on June 28-29 in Osaka, Japan to hold trade talks with the US.
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