Republicans accuse Biden’s UN ambassador pick of being soft on China

Republicans accuse Biden’s UN ambassador pick of being soft on China
Greg Nash/Pool via AP
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Conservatives leading the charge against President Joe Biden in Congress have released a report accusing Linda Thomas-Greenfield, Biden’s nominee for ambassador to the United Nations, of downplaying China’s use of its growing political influence in Africa to promote communist ideology and undermine America's efforts to promote democracy.

“Thomas-Greenfield is former Senior Vice President for the Albright Stonebridge Group, which has held a number of senior CCP officials as clients including Jin Ligang, a former senior Chinese government official,” said a report by the Republican Study Committee. 

“Ambassador Greenfield has a history of troubling comments praising and welcoming China’s role in Africa,” the report added. “As Senator Ted Cruz has pointed out, in 2006, Greenfield said she was not concerned about China’s growing influence in Africa, and in 2013 she stated that she does not see the US competing with China in Africa.”

Days prior, the Republican Study Committee, which is chaired by Rep. Jim Banks, announced a legislative package targeting Biden’s weak stance on China. As reported by Rebel News, the caucus is launching a series of attacks on Biden to take him to task for his close ties with communists in Beijing. 

Writing for the Washington Post, Thomas-Greenfield discussed her belief that the United States and China should collaborate to promote values like “good governance, gender equity and the rule of law.” 

“I see no reason why China cannot share in those values. In fact, China is in a unique position to spread these ideals given its strong footprint on the continent,” she wrote. 

The GOP caucus described her view as a “naive and outlandish belief.” 

“This is a naive and outlandish belief considering China is a Communist regime with the most sophisticated surveillance state in the world, and is committing genocide against its own Uyghur Muslim population including allegations by concentration camp survivors of a campaign of systematic rape of Uyghur women,” the panel wrote. 

In 2014, Thomas-Greenfield called on African leaders to cooperate with China despite its predatory lending practices, and to work with the Chinese government to get the “best possible deal,” the Republicans noted. They pointed out that Thomas-Greenfield described America’s role in Africa as “to ensure that they have the capacity to strike and negotiate better deals with the Chinese in 2019.”

Thomas-Greenfield’s proposals run counter to former President Trump’s efforts to keep China’s economy in check and prevent it from obtaining dominance in the global market. In 2018, Trump signed the BUILD Act to counter China’s global investments and limit the reach of its Belt and Road Initiative, a mega infrastructure project that runs from China all the way to Africa and Europe. 

The BUILD Act advances U.S. influence in developing nations “by incentivizing private investment as an alternative to a state-directed investment model,” according to the Congressional Research Service. 

The Trump administration warned that China’s “predatory practices” in Africa would stunt economic growth and threaten the financial independence of developing nations. In addition, it would cripple U.S. investment, interfere with U.S. military operations and pose a significant threat to U.S. national security interests.

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