Roughly a week after Axios published a leak claiming that President Trump was preparing to launch a new “broadside” against China that would tie “Russia and China” together, the substance of this mysterious hint has finally been revealed.
During remarks before the UN Security Council (the US, one of five permanent members, assumed the chairmanship this year) Trump accused China of launching election interference efforts similar to those purportedly orchestrated by Russia. China’s goal, Trump said, was to stop him from winning reelection in 2020.
“They do not want me or us to win because I am the first president to challenge China on trade. And we are winning on trade. We are winning on every level,” Trump said.
“We don’t want them to meddle or interfere in our upcoming election.”
JUST IN: President Trump asserts that “China has been attempting to interfere in our upcoming 2018 election” because, as he asserts, “they do not want me, or us, to win, because” he is challenging China on trade. pic.twitter.com/mSPv9Q0mqI
— NBC News (@NBCNews) September 26, 2018
However, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said there would be “no question” that the midterms will be safe from foreign influence.
Back in July, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats said China, along with Russia, Iran and North Korea, “are penetrating our digital infrastructure and conducting a range of cyber intrusions and attacks against targets in the United States,” though he added that Russia “has been the most aggressive foreign actor.”
Following the Pentagon’s decision to approve a shipment of $300 million worth of military aircraft to Taiwan – not to mention the still-simmering trade war – we imagine Chinese President Xi Jinping won’t take too kindly to this.