This article originally appeared on Fox News on August 25, 2019.
No one, including President Donald Trump, wants a trade war with China. Nonetheless, Americans should line up in support of his decision Friday to increase U.S. counter-tariffs on Chinese imports in response to China raising its tariffs on U.S. goods and that country’s continuing refusal to abide by the norms of international trade and business practices.
If our ongoing trade woes with China have revealed anything, it’s just how convoluted and corrupt our relationship with the People’s Republic has been for decades – and how badly we need to follow through on Trump’s counter-tariff strategy to give our government the most effective leverage.
The China of 1989 is almost unrecognizable to an observer today. Thirty years ago the overwhelmingly poor and rural totalitarian state had only just embarked on the economic liberalization that would eventually make it America’s rival for world dominance.
Some things, however, have not changed. In 1989 the Chinese government was faced with months of mass protests in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square in support of political freedoms. Today the democratic and capitalist enclave of Hong Kong (a former British colony) is boiling with the same spirit of resistance to the threat of communist repression.
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