The US-China ‘Cold War’ threatens people of Asian descent

The US-China 'Cold War' threatens people of Asian descent 2

The US-China ‘Cold War’ threatens people of Asian descent

The United States has seen a sharp increase in violence targeting people of Asian descent over the past year.

The shooting at three spas in Atlanta, Georgia last week, leaving eight people dead, including six people of Asian descent, is the latest serious attack targeting the AAPI community in the US.

Protesters held signs saying `Asians are not a virus` in Los Angeles on March 13.

Many activists believe that one of the main reasons for this trend is the volatile political situation after the outbreak of Covid-19.

`Before the pandemic, Trump’s statements about China often viewed the country and its 1.4 billion people as enemies, but rarely made a clear distinction between the Chinese government and its companies or people.

This discrimination has made ordinary people of Asian descent in America targets, lawmakers argued at a House hearing last week.

`I am truly shocked at the current anger in our country,` said Democratic congressman Doris Matsui of California.

`When America attacks China, Chinese people will be hit and those who look like Chinese people will also suffer. America’s foreign policy in Asia is also its domestic policy towards people of Asian descent,`

However, many people question if Trump and his allies took a different tone, would hate attacks targeting Asians decrease?

`Asian Americans object to Trump and many others using the concept of ‘Chinese virus,’ because they fear that it will have real consequences,` said historian Jeff Chang.

However, the wave of hatred against Asians in America existed before the Trump administration, according to observers.

Some analysts believe that in the current political context in Washington, where both the Democratic and Republican parties are united in their anti-China stance, risks to the Asian community will increase.

President Joe Biden’s administration has condemned violence targeting Asian Americans, while avoiding use of the term `Chinese virus` and conspiracy theories that the pandemic was intentionally created in a Chinese laboratory.

`But Biden has done little in terms of actual policy to reduce the wave of anti-Asian hate that Trump incited,` said Mae Ngai, a historian at Columbia University.

Ngai proposed that Biden stop considering Beijing as an adversary, but this is a controversial move that few people follow in Washington, where most politicians now view China as `an existential threat and challenge`.

The US-China 'Cold War' threatens people of Asian descent

Protest against anti-Asian hate in Seattle on March 13.

Many commentators reject the idea that pressuring China on issues such as Hong Kong, Taiwan, Uyghurs in Xinjiang… is related to the wave of anti-Asian hatred in China.

Washington politicians `must clearly distinguish between genuine concerns about Beijing’s actions and a wave of hatred against Asian Americans,` according to foreign policy experts Caroline Chang, Anka Lee and Johna

Until then, millions of Asian Americans will have to find ways to cope with trauma that is not their fault.

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