The day following the presidential debate where U.S. President Donald Trump and Democratic candidate Joe Biden expressed their willingness to stand up to China, the superpower's president, Xi Jinping, issued a warning to any future opposition.
As reported by Newsweek, the comments were transcribed in The South China Morning Post from a speech in Beijing that marked the 70th anniversary of the Korean War. The conflict saw China take arms beside North Korea against the United States, South Korea, and United Nations forces.
"Seventy years ago, the imperialist invaders fired upon the doorstep of a new China," Xi said.
"The Chinese people understood that you must use the language that invaders can understand — to fight war with war and to stop an invasion with force, earning peace and respect through victory."
"The Chinese people will not create trouble but nor are we afraid of them, and no matter the difficulties or challenges we face, our legs will not shake and our backs will not bend."
According to Newsweek, Western hopes that China would liberalize have been snuffed out as the country continues to use wealth gained from participating in the international economy to solidify its totalitarian rule. Notably, evidence has surfaced that China is engaging in a brainwashing campaign on Uighur children as part of a plot to exterminate the traditions and culture of the minority ethnic group. From here, the nation is allegedly attempting to continue wielding its power to influence other regions of Asia and beyond.
With China concerning Western lawmakers, the subject of the country at Thursday's debate became a battle over which candidate would apply the appropriate pressure to the superpower.
As reported by Fortune, a trade war between the U.S. and China began in July 2018, when the Trump administration imposed $34 billion tariffs on the latter's goods. In response, China slapped a 25 percent tariff on American agricultural products, which paved the way for a back-and-forth between the two warring nations. While Trump claimed Biden would not be aggressive enough with China, the former vice president claimed that the head of state's conflict with the country is costing American taxpayers.
According to Xi, ideologies focused on self-interest, unilateralism, and protectionism — which appears to be a thinly veiled jab at America — are "totally unworkable."