A predictable sequence of events now unfolds whenever senior-level U.S. officials, notably President Donald Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, launch new broadsides against China:
- Wait between 12 and 24 hours for the foreign ministry to draft a response that basically repeats previously stated denunciations of the U.S.
- Official Chinese Twitter accounts then circulate those comments.
- Party-controlled media outlets then follow the tone set by the foreign ministry with a flurry of “news reports,” editorials, and articles written by non-native Chinese supporters in the affected regions.
Over the weekend, we saw this approach in response to comments made by Secretary Pompeo at last week’s press briefing for international journalists at the Foreign Press Center in Washington, D.C.
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