America has China fooled yet again. It isn’t hard to figure out, but still ingenious. Whatever strategist first learned it from a convenient mistake that happened with Taiwan. Taiwan’s current president, Tsai Ing-Wen, had previously endorsed Hillary, for 2016—a mistake she didn’t repeat in the 2020 election. When Trump was elected, Taiwan’s government was heavily concerned about retaliation from the Trump administration. But, Americans don’t hold grudges nor do we hold high regard for the opinions of foreign world leaders. Tsai reached out to Trump and they soon developed one of the best relationships heads of state ever shared.
China’s president, Xi Jinping, doesn’t seem to have learned that lesson, however. While many world leaders congratulated Biden when the news industry decided what the future should be, China waited until the GSA got the green light for transition steps. Then, he congratulated Biden on his victory. Taiwan still has not made any move since the electoral college has not convened and remains neutral and welcoming toward whomever the American president will be in January. China’s position shows worry mixed with miscalculation.
When Trump’s lawsuits, appeal to state legislatures, and near 80% support from his suspecting base land him a second term, China will be in for a shock. They will fear retaliation just as Taiwan did, no matter how unwarranted. This will drive China to take defensive measures without need and appear as the provocateur of the coming US-China conflict. Having served its purpose, US ambiguity over the election will quickly pass, and China’s leadership will begin to socially self destruct. Then hold on; things will be furious as they will be fast.