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  • Welcome back to DC Diary, our vlog.

  • I hosted a think-tank discussion this week with the number two

  • at Nato and the number two at US State Department.

  • The topic was in large part how Western democracies have

  • handled foreign policy in the age of coronavirus,

  • and what struck me about some polling data I came across

  • was, at least, one answer, which was not very well.

  • The data, which looked at public opinion

  • in America, France, and Germany, showed

  • China's perceived global influence

  • has spiked in past months.

  • That's since coronavirus has spread

  • around the world in a pandemic that's infected more than 10

  • million people, killing more than 500,000 people,

  • and destroying economies and employment across the world.

  • It's changed life as we know it, and it started in China.

  • And I'm talking to you from lockdown now.

  • In fact, it shows China has pretty much

  • doubled its global influence between January and May.

  • It's now seen in an overwhelmingly more negative

  • light, according to that data, and that's

  • a conclusion that is backed up by other polling that's

  • also out this week.

  • But nevertheless, more and more people

  • look to China as the top global power in the world.

  • This comes in a week where Beijing

  • is looking ever more assertive.

  • Hong Kong still has 27 years on the clock left

  • to run on a colonial era agreement, part of a deal

  • that stipulated when the time came in 1997 for Britain

  • to hand Hong Kong back to China that it would exist

  • under semi-independence under a system known

  • as one country, two systems.

  • No more.

  • Hong Kong is now subject as of this week

  • to the same national security law

  • that the rest of the mainland functions under, and the US

  • has already withdrawn its special trading status.

  • Pro-democracy groups have already disbanded,

  • businesses jittery, and the future of a financial hub

  • is at stake.

  • The Trump administration claims China is forcing countries

  • all around the world to choose which side they're on,

  • but the Trump administration is also piling

  • on the pressure themselves.

  • Economic sanctions are piling up.

  • Countries in the European Union, outside it

  • in Nato, India, the African union,

  • they're all having to calculate their interests

  • amid a competition that is operating

  • in the absence of any unifying arms-controlled agreement.

  • This one will run and run.

Welcome back to DC Diary, our vlog.

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Is coronavirus boosting China's influence? DC Lockdown Diary

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    洪子雯 posted on 2020/07/06
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