The following is a signed editorial, written by Ding Gang (丁刚, a People’s Daily senior reporter (or editor, also known for columns at the English-language Global Times).
Published by People’s Daily online on August 4 (GMT). Links within the following blockquotes added during translation – JR.
Now is the time to give Washington a little beating with our financial weapons! We didn’t really want to turn America’s bonds into weapons, but Washington forces China to do so.
On August 1, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a motion concerning the debt problem, and its Taiwan group, on August 2, the Taiwan working group initiated a jointly-signed paper. 181 Representatives jointly sent a letter to Obama, demanding the federal government to approve the sales of F-16C/D fighter planes to Taiwan promptly, based on the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA), “in order to ensure peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait”.
On that same August 2, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a motion concerning the debt problem, passed a motion to be put into immediate effect by the Obama administration, to enable the finance department to issue bonds for additional debts amounting to 400 billion US dollars. Should China be the biggest buyer again?
U.S. Congress can’t be unaware of the fact that raising the debt ceiling and issuing bonds again depends on China and other “big capitalists” who would buy them. But at the same time, they don’t consider China’s core interests, and stir further arms sales to Taiwan, to add even more contempt and outrageous arrogance to an already extremely deplorable situation.
A Chinese reduction or halt in buying American bonds would make the bonds less valuable, and affect the value of the bonds China is holding. But as things have gone as far as they are now, I’m afraid we will lose more than just dollars if we let the Washington politicians continue their game.
The delivery of some new arms to Taiwan may spur American employment rates a bit, but there is no way that they will bring Taiwan’s military power up to the mainland’s [i. e. China – JR]. But the actual problem lies somewhere else. It is that some members of the Congress keep showing contempt for China’s core interests which shows that they absolutely have no intention to respect China. If we don’t give them a little beating, if we don’t make America feel the pain, Sino-American relations will be impeded by those few people, and the risks of “sitting on a roller coaster” remain inescapable.
A reduction or stop in buying American bonds will of course spell some losses for China. We must find ways to reduce such losses, and switch from our passive to an active role. Among the measures taken should be a direct relation between the purchases and American policies. For example, the amount to which we buy bonds should be in relation to what America sells to Taiwan. Another example: we should influence international rating agencies, demand a downgrade of American bonds, thus raising the interest rates. Also, we could introduce limited sanctions against the states where the agitating members of Congress come from, thus focusing on striking at their employment rates.
China is reluctant to use the U.S. bonds it is holding as weapons, as it is the hard-earned money of the Chinese common people, which must be valued highly. But when China’s sovereignty and integrity is offended, we have no other way than turning them into weapons that defend us.