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US clings to 'Cold War mentality' against China, geopolitical scholar says

By Azam Khan in Hong Kong | | Updated: 2020-07-16 20:45

An Italian-born professor and geopolitical scholar said Hong Kong has suffered intolerable political interference from the United States, which cannot shake its "Cold War mentality" against China.

Referring to the sanctions imposed on Hong Kong by the US government through the "Hong Kong Autonomy Act", signed into law by US President Donald Trump on Tuesday, Fabio Massimo Parenti, a professor at China Foreign Affairs University in Beijing, said the US' "Cold War mentality" toward China can be explained in a 2004 release of documents by the CIA that outlined measures to block China's development.

Parenti, who splits his time working at universities in Italy and China, further explained that such a mentality might be a result from the unwillingness of Western countries to accept the turning of the tide.

In the scholar's eyes, China is establishing connections with many other countries. He concluded that the present climate of hostility arises from Western elite classes who fear that they are losing influence.

Meanwhile, Parenti also called the US actions an "unbelievable" intrusion into the internal affairs of another country.

If the roles were reversed, and China had signed into law international repercussions against the US for American injustice toward its minorities, or had sided with those in California calling for secession from the country, there would be unimaginable outrage from the US, he said.

"Instead of addressing their pandemic disaster, or finding a solution to America's domestic oppression, or Americans dying in riots, the US primary focus is on China's domestic affairs," he added.

Some Western nations have followed the US in castigating Beijing and formulating policies to force their will on China. The United Kingdom has proposed a path to citizenship for Hong Kong residents with BNO passports, while Canberra is reportedly considering doing the same, and has offered visa extensions to thousands of Hong Kong people in Australia.

Parenti characterized the Australian response as abrupt and unnecessarily hostile meddling. He noted that Australia is economically dependent on China, as well as having a large international student body that includes many Chinese.

"Australia would be impoverished and in an economic depression if it were not for China. However, with its obligation to its alliance with the US and the United Kingdom, it has to act against its own interests," Parenti said. Australia has an around $40 billion dollar trade surplus with China, principally in minerals and agricultural products.

Parenti referred to the book The Great Delusion by John Mearsheimer, a renowned American political scientist and international-relations scholar.

"Outside the US, the liberal value is never applied. Instead we see the opposite of the value of democracy, respect and freedom," Parenti said, paraphrasing the book.

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