The Great China-American Abyss

Victor Davis Hanson
American Greatness

Imagine if the United States treated China in the same way it does us?

What if American companies simply ignored Chinese copyrights and patents, and stole Chinese ideas, inventions, and intellectual property, as they pleased and with impunity?

What if the American government targeted Chinese industries by dumping competing American export products at below the cost of production—to bankrupt Chinese competitors and corner their markets?

What would the communist Chinese government do if a huge American spy balloon lazily traversed continental China—sending back to the United States photographic surveillance of Chinese military bases and installations?

How would China react to American stonewalling any explanation, much less refusing to apologize for such an American attack on Chinese sovereignty?

Envision a U.S. high-security virology lab in the Midwest, run by the Pentagon, allowing the escape of an engineered, gain-of-function deadly virus.

Instead of enlisting world cooperation to stop the spread of the virus, the American government would lie that it sprung up from a local bat or wild possum.

Washington would then make all its relevant military scientists disappear who were assigned to the lab, while ordering a complete media blackout.

America would forbid Chinese scientists from contacting their American counterparts involved in the lab, despite the deaths of more than 1 million Chinese from the American-manufactured disease.

And what if during the first days of the pandemic Washington had quietly prevented all foreign travel to the United States, while keeping open one-way direct flights from America to major Chinese cities?

How would Beijing respond if American biotech company warehouses were discovered in rural China with unsecured vials of deadly viruses and pathogens?

Would China be angered that it was never notified by an American company that it had left abandoned COVID and HIV viruses and malaria parasites in its facilities—along with rotting genetically engineered dead rats littering the floors with hundreds more lab animals abandoned in laboratory cages?

What would Chairman Xi Jinping have done if American-made fentanyl was shipped in massive quantities to nearby Tibet on the Chinese border? And what if it would be deliberately repackaged there as deceptive recreational drugs and smuggled into China, where it annually killed 100,000 Chinese youth, year after year?

What if 10,000 Americans this year illegally crossed the Indian border into China and disappeared into its interior?

What if an allied Asian nation—such as South Korea, Japan, or Taiwan—went nuclear. And what if, in North-Korean style, it serially blustered to send one of its nuclear missiles into the major cities of China?

What if almost monthly China discovered an American military operative teaching incognito at a major Chinese university or among the ranks of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army?

Would China object if an American femme fatale agent was sleeping with a high-ranking Chinese official of the Chinese communist politburo?

Or what if one of the chauffeurs of its top ranking Chinese officials was a nearly two-decade-long American agent?

What would be the Chinese reaction if there were 350,000 American students attending schools all over the Chinese nation, with perhaps 3,000-4,000 of them actively engaged in national security espionage on behalf of the United States?

These “what-ifs” could be expanded endlessly. But they reflect well enough the great asymmetry in the bizarre Chinese-American relationship.

Obviously, China would not tolerate America treating it as it does the Americans.

Why then does the imbalance continue?

Do naïve Americans believe that the more China is indulged, the more it will respond in kind to American magnanimity?

Does the United States believe that the more China is exposed to our supposedly radically democratic and free culture, the sooner it will become a good democratic citizen of the global community?

Are we afraid of China, because it has four times our population, and believes its economy and military will overtake ours in a decade?

Are we terrified that its ruthless Chinese government is completely amoral, utterly ruthless, and capable of anything?

Or are our political, cultural, and corporate elites so compromised by their lucrative Chinese investments and joint ventures, that they prioritize profits over their own country’s national security and self-interest?

And did the Biden family—including President Joe Biden himself—in the past receive millions of dollars from Chinese energy and investment interests?

Did Hunter Biden’s quid pro quo decade of grifting result in millions in Chinese money filling the Biden family coffers—all in exchange for the current Biden and past Obama administrations going soft on Chinese aggression?

No one seems able to explain the otherwise inexplicable.

But one way to get along with China, and to regain its respect is to deal with it exactly the way it deals with the United States.

Anything less, and America will continually be treated with even more Chinese contempt—and eventually extreme violence.

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29 thoughts on “The Great China-American Abyss”

  1. Thank you Mr. Hanson……….it is indeed bizarre this great asymmetry that America seems completely fine with while the working class can see so clearly exactly what is and has been taking place. Way back when we had a representative government we the people would feel like we had a recourse to change this direction, but no longer. We all know – yes we all know – why this is happening…………so say. Thank you for all your great writing, please continue.

  2. The problem with cutting off federal funds to states who defy US Immigration law is the court system. There are so many left wing judges now that if you cut off funding the States affected would sue the federal government. Some left wing judge would put a stay on the order to cut off federal funds. It would wind its way through the court system for months or even years.

  3. I never throw in the towel when the odds are against me; however, in the case of China vs. the U.S. I am afraid that the horse is too far out of the barn, the dog too far out of the pen — too much corruption every where.

    With another Trump Presidency…. Yes! There is a chance for the U.S. to recover and regain our prominence in the world while reclaiming our self esteem domestically. With continued Democrat negative leadership and God forbid another Biden Regime thrust upon us….. Sell the “Out House” Hortentz! It will be just a matter of time for China and its allies to take over the world and snuff out the flickering flame of the American Spirit.

    I think often the “We” are our own worst enemy.


    1. Mr. Hanson always nails it. I voted for Trump. I worry this time around no good independent thinkers will work for/with him. He treats folks poorly. He needs people to execute the presidency. I’m hoping for Vivik Ramaswamy.

  4. VDH nailed it. I had the responsibility to deal with PRC’s minister of internal security. Previously as a fighter pilot our team shot down a Chinese piloted North Vietnamese MiG 21. I opened the conversation with the “ we shot your boy down” . After the meeting the minister slapped me on the back, smiled and let’s go have drinks the two of us. IT IS ALL ABOUT RESPECT.


    Generosity and solicitude are seen as weakness.
    VDH is correct: deal with them as they deal with us.
    But first, we have to beat the Left and their tired old and corrupt incompetent in the White House.

    As a postscript, the idea that by “opening” Red China to the West and trading with them would make them good little Jeffersonians is as foolish and naive as the idea that we could turn Middle Eastern states that have had any kind of free society or even the bases for one, into little Americas.

    Does the State Department deliberately recruit naive people who believe that human nature is basically good, and bad actors will change if we’re nice to them?

  6. Richard Bassett

    I know from personal experience what the Chinese do when you produce a better product at a lower price then the ones that they make, in 2013 they launched a trade complaint that accused four American companies of dumping and imposed unilateral duties for 5 years. They left our European and other Asian competitors alone.


    Perhaps, if a majority of U.S. citizens had a realistic view of China as a world power seeking world domination, and viewed it as an imminent threat, a demand for tough policy would push Washington. I’m afraid only an aggressive act by China (impacting people’s economic interests severely) would wake people up.

  8. The Chinese are smart enough not to allow US students into the country in any great numbers or allow drugs to get through their borders, etc. They have no IP to steal so everything is moving only in one direction. They insulted Obama when they did not bring the stairs. Air Force One should have immediately taken off and left China. But we don’t respect ourselves and China takes advantage of our self-loathing. Let’s hope that the CCP collapses before they start militarily with the US.

  9. Here we are and the emperor has no clothes, and he has put the rest of us at great peril, but no one on the dem side sees it or cares. How do we survive another year and a half of this?

  10. the only way to change bad behavior from china or any country is consequences. for china both economic and human restrictions should be used. the u.s. should never be o.k. with what they are doing.

  11. While I know Professor Hanson questions whether Trump can win the general election; with each article the professor points out issues that President Trump is quite strong on. Is there another candidate in the GOP field that has the PROVEN record of Trump? I can point out 10-20 issues the professor has written about in multiple articles that Trump has had the policies preventing what the professor rails against. Whether it be China, constant wars, the economy, law and order; name it, Trump has done it.

    The more I read Blade of Perseus, listen to VDH podcasts with Sami and Jack, the more confident I am in voting for Trump. Yes I wish Trump was more articulate and less egotistical but that is what makes Trump the firebrand fighter he is. The ONE we the people NEED!

    1. I think DeSantis and Ramaswamy would potentially follow the Trump path. With Ramaswamy you have not solid track record to back it up. DeSantis has a track record on the State level and its very good. In some ways you could say DeSantis has the best proven record of getting results and galvanizing voters to support him.

      As for Trump, he did lose the 2020 election and his overall support is very weak across most demographics. Hence, why support someone who is more likely to lose? He can’t accomplish anything if he can’t win and looking at his numbers, there is nothing to believe he can cross the 50% support threshold.

  12. Another great article summarizing all the things that don’t make any sense to real American citizens. The biden puppeteers would probably counter saying the banning of gas stoves and natural gas in general, the destruction of our Southern borden, the weaponization of the cia, fbi, and the doj (caps are used for proper nouns), their orchestration of the January 6th set-up, the $4/gallon price of gas, the embarrassment of the Afghanistan debacle ( the litany of dumb stuff increases geometrically) is proof that your article overlooks all of these “positive” initiatives “. Add to this the hundreds of billions of dollars they have sent to the Ukraine. They assure us that they can account for the actual use of every dollar. So it appears that we have been blunted by their logic and are at a stalemate.

    1. The key to Go is exhausting your opponent, not a quick “Checkmate” decisive victory. Mao may have controlled the reactionary body but it was old Confucian tactician ChouEnlai that controlled the mind and patience to survive. If we think like Go we need to first get rid of the Woke/DEI and then start adjusting to our new reality : the weakling kid on the block is now a muscular giant. Do we want to be a new, tight, clever and confident ‘David’ or an old lumbering, senile, overweight, and bufoonish caricature of a has-been that still sees himself as the youthful King of the Hil?

    1. Don’t forget professor Hanson a Chinese government bureaucrat threatened to shoot down speaker Pelosis’ govt airplane for her diplomatic visit to Taiwan. Now, pleasant a thought as that may be, just kidding, completely unacceptable!

  13. Keep up your good analysis of the the current condition of our country. Your voice is very important. It is my hope that your voice will be joined by persons in Congress that can actually act to remedy our condition. The problems are many and perhaps are perceived as too great by many to even tackle at all. I pray for courage for our leaders to do what is right instead of what is easiest.

  14. VDH, you have demonstrated exactly how we should evaluate our relationship with China (and other countries, as well), simply “put the shoe on the other foot”.

    Of course this will never happen as along as we allow our representatives to enrich themselves from our adversaries.

  15. Mr. Hanson hits the nail on the head. Too many Americans, and other westerners, don’t pay enough attention to the PRC and all of the ways that the Chinese communist party takes advantage of the U.S., and other democratic countries. We’ve made some improvement, but the U.S. and other democracies need to do a better job of raising awareness about the threat from the PRC.

  16. All realized that our president is a Manchurian plant from his first phone call with Xi. Poor ol’ Joe ‘spoke’ with the CCP leader for some 4 hours when he was unable to talk with any other world leader–congratulating him on ‘winning’ the election–for even 5 minutes.
    And the leader of the GOP, good ol’ Mitch? Ask his wife.

    Let us not ignore the racial aspect of the current global struggle, that it is the destiny of the Han Chinese of the Middle Kingdom to rule the earth. Remember the Aryans?
    And our mega-rich elites–who dictate woke, equity, & carbon-tax to subjugate all others–owe their wealth to the slave-labor totally managed by the CCP and the ‘free’ money from the Fed and US taxpayer retirement funds.

    P.S. Obviously that CCP balloon had ground-piercing LIDAR to more fully map our missile silos.

  17. It is contempt and disrespect that springs from running a $35 BILLION a month trade deficit against America. The CCP has rolled through gratitude, into disrespect, and soon to be resentful of having to play second fiddle to a country they view as lazy , weak, decadent, corrupt, wasteful, and incompetent. This will come to a head soon and be resolved in one of two ways.

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