Di Dongsheng, deputy dean of the School of International Studies at Renmin University of China, might never have thought that one day he would be cannon fodder in partisan US struggles.
On November 28, Di gave a speech under the topic "Will China's financial opening-up bring in the wolf of Wall Street?" at a year-end forum organized by guancha.cn. About 10 days later, part of Di's speech was maliciously described by Fox News host Tucker Carlson on the Monday edition of "Tucker Carlson Tonight" as "a smoking gun" to prove his point that "top leaders in American government and business have been compromised by a foreign power that seeks to undermine our country and democratic system."
US President Donald Trump retweeted Carlson's monologue. This so-called evidence that China tried to influence the US government through Wall Street has been viewed by some Republicans as wonderful material to attack their opponents with.
On Carlson's program, video of an interview between Carlson and a man named Tony Bobulinski, who Carlson claimed to be "a business partner of the Bidens," was played. In the interview, guided by Carlson, Bolbulinski said, "Joe Biden and the Biden family are compromised [to China]." The video clip ends there abruptly.
What Carlson wanted was crystal clear. Fox News, which has almost turned into Trump's household troop, aims to use Di's speech to attack the Democratic opponents. American politicians and media are always guided by their own interests. In Di's case, they have totally ignored China's long-standing will to avoid conflicts with the US. To meet their own interests, these people took out of context a Chinese scholar's personal opinions, in an attempt to continue to poison American society's perception of China.
Trump once called North Korean leader Kim Jong-un a "friend." But it's clear how things are like between them. Di, the Chinese scholar, was talking tall just like Trump. It is very common to see some individuals with big mouths. But it's ridiculous to take some words from the big mouths as concrete evidence.
In fact, Di's so-called explosive inside story is not different from reports and rumors circulating in US media. At most, he added some fuel for the speech performance. The audience laughed and applauded, but never took it seriously. It would be naive to regard such a speech as "a smoking gun."
Aren't some American public figures fond of telling so-called inside stories? Haven't many US politicians often stolen the spotlight by throwing out claptrap? But they couldn't gain with those stories, though they could further deteriorate China-US relations. So the US forces who want to exploit Chinese scholars' opinions to engage in partisan struggles should stop it.
Fox News' processing of Di's speech is the epitome of the US' increasingly wild opinion war on China. They will take advantage of anything they can get and process them into so-called evidence. If the opinions of a scholar can be taken as evidence of judgment, then just take a look at Gordon Chang, an infamous China expert. From Chang's remarks, we can hardly believe that the US government has a little goodwill toward China.