Trump’s China Paradox


Just as he has challenged various other international organizations, Trump is now targeting the World Health Organization. In doing so, he is accomplishing the complete opposite of what he is trying to achieve: China will only become increasingly more powerful thanks to his actions.

Donald Trump against China, China against Trump’s America – we should be prepared for their animosity toward each other to be of a lasting nature and for it to leave its mark in many areas, including politics, economics and public health. President Trump has threatened the World Health Organization, saying he will permanently withdraw U.S. funding and pull the United States out entirely if it does not implement reforms soon.

China sees Trump’s attack as an obvious attempt to distract attention away from his own failures in handling the COVID-19 pandemic. Anyone who thought the culmination of a crisis would lead to closer global cooperation has been proved wrong.

Criticizing mistakes the WHO has made is acceptable and indeed necessary. China will also have to explain and justify its actions on many occasions still to come. Trump’s pull out threat, however, will not change anything for the better. His actions are only paving the way for China to exert even greater influence, despite this being the situation he is trying to avoid.

Trump holds the same opinion of the WHO as he does of other international organizations – fundamentally, he has no time for them whatsoever, just as he fundamentally distrusts multilateralism, as it supposedly does not serve American interests. Trying to persuade him of the opposite is hopeless. America is becoming less and less involved and China, the great rival, is stepping into the vacuum.

Does no one at the White House see the paradox here or do they all think they are on an exciting adventure, which is harming the world – and also America?

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About Zahra-Claire Bahrani-Peacock 20 Articles
I grew up in the UK, moved to Germany at 18 to study translation and interpreting, and then on to Spain after completing the course to deepen my knowledge of the Spanish language and culture. I (and consequently also my cat …) am now fluent in three languages and have dedicated the past two and a half years to language, translation and interpreting.

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