Trump’s Insistence on Keeping China Honest on Trade Deals and Sanctions Against North Korea Exudes Strength

China has expressed concern over “secondary sanctions” placed by President Trump on Chinese companies and individuals found to have illicit dealings with North Korea. And, “hold the press” Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, is ready to double down on this approach, calling for the suspension of direct investment from China.

It seems that the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act, passed by the House last month that includes demands for the US government to create additional military ties with Taiwan is irritating China too.

President Trump has been facing substantial criticism from the left and some members of his party over his “bombastic threats.” directed at Kim Jong-un and North Korean leaders. However, CIA Director, Mike Pompeo has said that a threat of nuclear conflict was not imminent. The Director said, “I’ve seen no intelligence that would indicate that we’re in that place today.”


Although Kim Jong-un has made many threats against the United States, including attacks on South Korea, Guam, and the U.S., experts such as Pompeo have downplayed concerns over nuclear proliferation. That is not to say that North Korea is slowing their pace towards further developing the country’s nuclear weaponry and capabilities. We continue to believe that the U.S. should continue beefing up their missile defense programs and keep strategic attack options open. The economic sanctions will only severely negatively impact North Korea’s nuclear capabilities if China meaningfully joins the sanctions. China appears to be holding their options open and has not indicated a willingness to exert adequate sanctions against the country.

President Trump has chosen to co-mingle economic and trade issues, including trade secret violations by China against the U.S., and economic sanctions against North Korea, a practice most former Presidents have refused to embrace. We believe the President has made a wise and bold choice by proceeding in this fashion: The President exudes confidence and strength by facing China using this dual approach.

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