Coronavirus

Trump Escalates Tensions With China

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

I did not expect it would take long for Trump to make take the next punitive steps in his rhetorical war with China, but I did not necessarily think it would happen the very next day after Hong Kong's leaders blasted the United States for having "double standards."

Reuters first reported this morning that the Trump regime is planning to ban Chinese airlines and private charter flights to the United States.

The order applies to Air China, China Eastern Airlines Corp, China Southern Airlines Co, and Hainan Airlines Holding Co. [...]

The Chinese carriers are flying no more than one scheduled flight a week to the United States but also have flown a significant number of additional charter flights, often to help Chinese students return home.

The Trump administration is also cracking down on Chinese passenger airline charter flights and will warn carriers not to expect approvals. Administration officials have suggested charter flights have been used to circumvent Chinese government limits on flights.

The Trump regime says they're doing this because American-owned airlines have not been given the green light to resume flights to and from China, but there's a very good reason for that.

The reason is we have the largest number of COVID-19 cases and deaths in the world and it's not even close. China is not allowing American flights because we still don't truly have control of the virus even if cases and deaths have slowed.

Delta Airlines released a statement of support for the White House that says they "support and appreciate the U.S. government’s actions to enforce our rights and ensure fairness," but I think they should be careful what they wish for. They should take a look at the American metal industry and what happened after they got the tariffs on Chinese metal they were asking for. It is just as likely that Trump's actions will further postpone the resumption of American flights if they're ever allowed again at all by the time Trump is finished.

This is another case where China is possibly acting in bad faith to some degree, but Trump's actions won't fix the problem. His reverse Midas Touch never fails to make matters worse.

The appropriate way to respond here would be to finally take coronavirus testing and tracing seriously so the Chinese government wouldn't have a legimitate reason to block American flights, but Trump, like many other Americans, have decided the virus doesn't exist anymore.

The Chinese government has also limited flights to and from the United States for Chinese-owned carriers because they're afraid of bringing the coronavirus back to mainland China with them. But now, with Trump's ban on flights, we're going to start seeing stories about Americans or Chinese people trapped in either country because there's no way to return home.

  • muselet

    Ho-hum. More pointless posturing by Donald Trump.

    This is the sort of thing normal presidents would try to solve by diplomatic means, or even just at a regulatory level (“Have your civil aviation authorities call my civil aviation authorities.”), but Trump doesn’t do normal.

    –alopecia

    • Draxiar

      Ah diplomacy…the good ol’ days…