China Brief


TikTok’s Sale to Oracle Doesn’t Fix Anything

Despite efforts by China hawks to blunt Beijing’s influence, a Chinese firm will retain majority ownership of the app.

Chinese police patrol outside the Australian embassy in Beijing on January 25, 2019.

Why Has China Detained a CGTN Journalist?

The arrest of Chinese-Australian broadcaster Cheng Lei has prompted fears of hostage diplomacy.

Former White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon greets the fugitive Chinese billionaire Guo Wengui before introducing him at a news conference in New York on Nov. 20, 2018.

Who Is Guo Wengui, the Chinese Emigre With Links to Steve Bannon?

The billionaire fell out of favor in Beijing in 2015, but he is not a dissident. That should make U.S. policymakers wary.

Chinese President Xi Jinping prepares to vote during the third plenary session of the first session of the 13th National People's Congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on March 11, 2018.

Xi’s Latest Purge Reflects Climate of Fear

So-called anti-corruption crackdowns in the Chinese Communist Party follow a familiar pattern.

Hong Kong pro-democracy media mogul Jimmy Lai pushes through a media pack after being released on bail in Hong Kong on Aug. 12.

Why China Arrested Hong Kong Tycoon Jimmy Lai

The billionaire was detained under Beijing’s new national security law. What happens next will set a precedent for the territory’s elite.

An employee walks outside the headquarters of ByteDance, the firm that owns the video-sharing app TikTok, in Beijing on Aug. 5.

What’s Next for TikTok?

The confused U.S. policy over the Chinese-owned app exemplifies the challenges of decoupling in a globalized world.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivers a speech on Communist China and the future of the free world at the Richard Nixon Presidential Library on July 23, 2020 in Yorba Linda, California.

Why China Isn’t Taking Pompeo’s Bait

After the top U.S. diplomat’s adversarial speech last week, Beijing’s response was surprisingly mild.

People attempt to speak to someone at the Chinese consulate in Houston on July 22.

Why Did Trump Shut Down China’s Houston Consulate?

The move is part of a series of provocative steps that will only make the U.S.-China relationship worse.

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to the media in the Rose Garden at the White House on July 14 in Washington.

Trump’s China Speech Wasn’t About China

The U.S. president’s comments are part of a badly coordinated attempt to shape the dominant debate of the 2020 election.

Protesters chant slogans and gesture during a rally against China's new national security law in Hong Kong on July 1, 2020.

Is This the Beginning of the End for Western Tech in China?

Western firms say they won’t comply with the new national security law in Hong Kong.

Riot police secure an area in front of a road block during a demonstration against the new national security law on July 1 in Hong Kong.

Beijing’s New Security Law Is a Warning Sign

By silencing Hong Kong, the Chinese Communist Party shows it prioritizes ideology over pragmatism.

U.S. President Donald Trump, and China's Vice Premier Liu He, the country's top trade negotiator, sign a trade agreement in Washington on January 15.

The Trump Administration’s Divisions Over China Are Deeper Than Ever

Contradictions over the status of the U.S.-China trade deal show that the White House isn’t unified in its approach toward Beijing—even amid the pandemic.

Indian Army vehicles drive on a road near the border with China in Ladakh, northern India on June 17.

Why Is China Downplaying Its Border Clash With India?

By refraining from turning its soldiers into national martyrs, Beijing is keeping its options open.

Residents visit a reopened night market in Wuhan, China on June 3.

Why Not to Trust That Early Wuhan Study

Harvard research cited by Trump suggests the coronavirus was spreading as early as last August. The cherry-picked data isn’t peer-reviewed.

A man cycles past Tiananmen Square in Beijing on the eve of the 31st anniversary of the June 4, 1989, crackdown on pro-democracy protests on June 3.

How Is China Responding to the U.S. Protests?

Politicians’ calls to use force against demonstrators give Beijing fodder for propaganda—particularly in Hong Kong.

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