Overnight China has retaliated against Pompeo and imposed sanctions on Pompeo, O’Brien, Pottinger, Navarro, Bolton and others – 28 in total. They are barred from entering China, HK, Macau and from conducting business with China. They will shrug it off but the 28 will find that company boards and advisory groups will be reluctant to hire the 28 in order to avoid a negative impact on their business.
It is a settling of scores by China. The next step depends on the approach that Biden takes with China. Some academics, Prof Mearsheimer for example, says the US remains an aggressive hegemon and cannot allow China to challenge its supremacy. Digging deep, this is how Chairman Mao saw strategic issues when Nixon visited Beijing in 1972.
These are big History issues – the Rise and Fall of Leading Powers and not just some personal spat between leaders. China prepares for the worst and hopes for the best.
Mao was right when he said in 1947 that dominant powers compete with each other but they also cooperate with each other. Fascinating times ahead.