New viruses may develop. That is not in our power to prevent. But we can develop the ability and the means to tackle any new such threat if we build the international structures in which the world can act together and not behave as a house divided.
One hundred Chinese scholars published "An Open Letter to the People of the United States from 100 Chinese Scholars" in The Diplomat. It appeals for solidarity between China and the US and calls for an end to politicizing the pandemic and demonizing other countries. On Friday, more than 90 prominent figures in US security, diplomatic, business and academic circles also signed a letter calling on the Trump administration to work more closely with China to end the pandemic. The two letters echo each other. Officials and prominent figures from more than 20 countries have expressed their support for the Chinese scholars' letter seeking solidarity and stopping of the blame game.
The Chinese word for “crisis” is composed of two characters that respectively signify “danger” and “opportunity.” The coronavirus pandemic has indeed alerted the world to the “danger” lurking amongst us. But the G20 Extraordinary Leaders’ Summit on COVID-19 of March 26 represented a real "opportunity” to advance a coordinated global response to the outbreak, and to create also a new paradigm for humankind to overcome the drawbacks and dangers implied by the prevailing geopolitical status quo.
The convening of the G20 emergency summit is a right and urgent step in increasing global coordination and stabilizing economic confidence on the fight against COVID-19. At present, the virus has spread to more than 150 countries, and nearly 500,000 people have been infected worldwide, with the number of confirmed cases and death still rising rapidly.
The foreign policy of the United States has undergone major changes in recent years. From the Obama administration’s passive response to great-power competition to the Trump administration’s targeting of China and Russia as major strategic rivals, the U.S. has officially given up unipolarity in favor of the new era of great-power competition.
Some US politicians attempting to politicize the novel coronavirus have come under fire as officials, scientists and experts on international relations warned that such stigmatization would undermine international solidarity in containing the pandemic.The warning came after some senior US officials connected the virus with China. They include US President Donald Trump, who described the coronavirus as the "Chinese virus" on social media and a White House media briefing, although Director Robert Redfield of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said using the word Chinese as a way to describe the coronavirus is wrong.
This is part 3 of The Pacific Dialogue, between veteran Chinese diplomat Ambassador He Yafei and long-time American scholar on China Professor David Lampton. The dialogue took place on June 25, 2020, and was moderated by China-US Focus Editor-at-Large James Chau. The conversation focuses on the June 17 talks in Honolulu, Hawaii, between U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and China’s top diplomat, Yang Jiechi, the first high-ranking meeting between the two powers in months. He Yafei sees the talks as the beginning of renewed positive momentum, while Professor David Lampton calls for more dialogue across the board between government agencies, businesses and ordinary people.