How I will deal with China was one of Biden’s disclosure in a media chat
OpenLife Nigeria reports that President Joe Biden offered some of his most expansive remarks yet on the philosophy of his foreign policy during his first formal White House news conference, going deep on three hot issues facing his administration:
Overall, his performance was strong as he doubled his vaccine pledge to 200 million doses in 100 days, asked for more time to improve handling of an influx of child migrants on the border and blasted Republican voter suppression efforts in multiple states as “sick” and “un-American.”
He gave the impression that he knows exactly why he was elected president — to end the pandemic — and appears to have a firm idea of what he is trying to do at home and abroad. But will his plans survive the test of events?
The President admitted what has become obvious: he will not make a May 1 deadline to remove all US troops from the country, 20 years since the US sent forces to drive out al Qaeda after the September 11 attacks. But he also said he “can’t picture” US forces still being deployed there in a year’s time.
“We are not staying for a long time. We will leave,” Biden said. “The question is when we leave.”
It’s no secret that Biden wants US troops out. He’s called for winding down the war for years. But violent attacks by Taliban forces have raised fears the militia could take back the country if US and NATO allies go home. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani plans to reject a US plan that he enter a power-sharing agreement with the Taliban, CNN has reported.
Biden said he would work out how to leave, together with America’s friends in Europe. But exactly how he gets out isn’t clear.
After North Korea launched the first missile test of his presidency earlier this week, Biden chuckled. He’s not laughing anymore.
The President said on Thursday that a second set of ballistic missile tests by Pyongyang infringed a UN Security Council resolution and that there would be “responses” if it kept up its act. He still favors “some form of diplomacy” as his administration finalizes a North Korea policy review, but since he said talks will be conditioned on eventual “denuclearization” — a step Kim Jong Un has refused to take — we won’t hold our breath for a breakthrough.
Biden’s most interesting comments came in a prolonged discussion of China, with which his administration has already had a rocky start.
The President said that President Xi Jinping “doesn’t have a democratic — with a small d — bone in his body, but he’s a smart, smart guy. He’s one of the guys like Putin who thinks that autocracy is the wave of the future, (that) democracy can’t function in an ever-complex world.”
“The thing that I admire about dealing with Xi is he understands, he makes no pretense about not understanding what I’m saying anymore,” Biden also said.
In his first phone call as president with Xi, Biden made clear that while he wasn’t looking for confrontation with China “there will be steep, steep competition,” he said. Biden also claimed that he had gotten Beijing’s “attention” by holding a cyber summit with Australia, India and Japan about how to hold it accountable to international rules in the Pacific region.