This photo says it all: Next to Trump's wife, Chinas top diplomat Yang Jiechi. Next to Xi's wife, Jared Kushner. No Tillerson. pic.twitter.com/VTS3ANKiUa
— Isaac Stone Fish (@isaacstonefish) April 7, 2017
The Washington Post reports:
President Trump welcomed Chinese President Xi Jinping here Thursday at his Mar-a-Lago estate, kicking off a two-day summit that U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said would include “very frank discussions” over North Korea and trade…
The unorthodox location of the summit is intended to lessen the formality of the first meeting between the two leaders, White House aides said, and help establish a working relationship, if not rapport, between Trump and Xi after moments of tension during the U.S. election season.
Xi will spend just over 24 hours here, including a working lunch on Friday, officials said. Xi and the Chinese delegation will not stay overnight at the resort but rather at a nearby hotel.….
Somebody read those stories about Trump listening in on Mar-A-Largo guests’ phone calls.
President Trump introduces Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife Peng Liyuan before dinner at their Mar-a-Lago summit. pic.twitter.com/xATd8ImEjd
— CGTN America (@cgtnamerica) April 7, 2017
Trump: "We've had a long discussion already, and so far I have gotten nothing, absolutely nothing." Laughter. https://t.co/2y4vAaDwHO
— Ely Ratner (@elyratner) April 7, 2017
How about “rolled”? What are the odds ya got rolled, Mr. “President”?
— Ali Vitali (@alivitali) April 6, 2017
… While the Chinese are strategic and conservative in their policy and diplomacy maneuvers, Trump has earned his reputation as brash and somewhat unpredictable, often venting governing frustrations on Twitter in 140 characters or less.
“[The Chinese] know that you cannot conduct foreign policy by Twitter, by tweeting, and brashness,” former Ambassador to China Max Baucus told NBC News.
During his presidential campaign, Trump stridently criticized China, tweeting that the Asian nation is a currency manipulator and bashing their trade practices to cheering crowds across the country…
Two senior administration officials say the topics have not been scripted in advance in order to allow the leaders the ability to raise whatever issues are on their mind, bucking the usually highly-scripted talking points characteristic of bilateral summits…
Also, Donald Trump is incapable of following a script that can’t be printed out on cue cards, so why waste the time?
— Andrew Beatty (@AndrewBeatty) April 6, 2017
… On the domestic front, Xi is heading into a critical political meeting later this year. He needs to show that he can deal with the US leader as an equal and eliminate the potential for unwelcome surprises in the run-up to the event that could assure his power for years to come…
Amid such high stakes, Xi plans to offer “win-win” gifts calculated to make it easy for Trump to make concessions while burnishing his hard-charging, deal-making public persona.
Top of the list, according to a source briefed on Xi’s plans, will be a package of Chinese investments aimed at creating more than 700,000 American jobs – the number pledged to Trump by China’s regional rival Japan, during Prime Minister Abe’s February Mar-a-Lago visit.
There may also be offers to further open China’s auto and agricultural markets, insiders say, and even some concessions on Chinese banks’ transactions with North Korea, a vital financial lifeline for the country.
He may also offer Chinese assistance in Trump’s infrastructure renewal plan and a stake in China’s newly established infrastructure bank.
In exchange, according to the source, Xi will ask Trump to delay planned weapons sales to Taiwan and loosen export restrictions on biotech and water treatment sectors.
Xi’s main objective will not be establishing a relationship “for the next three or four years, but stable ties during the next three quarters” through China’s 19th Party Congress, according to the source….
So, Xi will offer Trump some media-friendly rube-bait, plus presumably a little side deal for Princelings Jared, Don & Eric, in return for turning a blind eye to whateverthehell happens on the other side of the globe for the ‘next three quarters’. Of course, Lord Smallgloves won’t be able to hold up his end of the deal — he hasn’t got that much focus — but then, Chinese businessmen are kinda notorious for regarding a signed contract as the point at which one starts serious negotiations, so Trump’s kids are bound to get shafted anyways. As long as the President-Asterisk doesn’t sign away Guam and maybe the Philippines…
I like when CNN asks what other leaders think of Trump, as if we haven't seen their newspapers. ("Ignorant as a child") pic.twitter.com/H1ccrfAxUb
— Schooley (@Rschooley) April 6, 2017