Trump Gives Chinese Parent Company 90 Days to Divest from TikTok
by Stephen Lendman
US cold war on China risks turning hot if bipartisan hardliners in Washington push things too far.
Their hostile actions are all about wanting China’s development, growth, and prominence on the world stage undermined.
Since Trump took office, scores of Chinese tech-related companies were blacklisted from doing business in the US.
Falsely accused of threatening US national security, ByteDance’s TikTok video-sharing firm has been on the Trump regime’s target list for months.
It poses no security threat to the US or any other countries.
Yet last December, the Pentagon banned its use by military personnel on government-issued devices.
Congressional legislation was introduced to prohibit federal employees from using TikTok on government devices.
The DNC warned against using the video-sharing platform.
It’s hugely popular with over 100 million US users, countless millions more worldwide — why it’s drawn scrutiny in Washington.
Targeting the firm and many other Chinese tech-related ones is part of US war on the country and its enterprises by other means.
It’s all about wanting corporate America to have a competitive advantage.
Claiming targeted Chinese firms pose a national security threat is cover for what’s really going on.
The CIA reportedly indicated that it found no evidence of Beijing getting TikTok user information from the company.
Trump paid no attention. Last week by executive order, he gave ByteDance 90 days to divest from TikTok, overriding his earlier 45 day ultimatum.
Like most everything he says, the EO falsely said he acted “to deal with (a) national emergency” when none exists with the firm, its parent company or China.
He lied claiming “the spread in the United States of mobile applications developed and owned by companies in the People’s Republic of China continues to threaten the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States (sic).”
He falsely said that user data collected by TikTok “threatens to allow (Beijing) access to Americans’ personal and proprietary information — potentially allowing China to track the locations of Federal employees and contractors, build dossiers of personal information for blackmail, and conduct corporate espionage.”
No evidence corroborates the claim. The CIA refuted it.
Trump is congenital liar, a disgrace to the office he holds, contemptuous of the rule of law, sovereign nations not controlled by the US, and ordinary people everywhere — at home and abroad.
ByteDance didn’t respond to Trump’s EO. Last week, it issued a statement saying the following:
It’s “committed to continuing to bring joy to families and meaningful careers to those who create on our platform for many years to come,” adding:
“We will pursue all remedies available to us in order to ensure that the rule of law is not discarded and that our company and our users are treated fairly – if not by the (regime), then by the US courts.”
China seeks cooperative relations with the US and other countries.
Trump regime and congressional hostility toward Beijing make achieving this objective with Washington unattainable.
What Trump calls a “plague” unleashed by China and other Big Lies widens the breach between both nations, heightening the risk of direct confrontation.
On August 17, China’s official People’s Daily accused the US of waging cold war on the country, including by McCarthyite tactics, adding the following:
“Recently a group of former statesmen and scholars from 48 countries initiated an online event themed ‘A new Cold War against China is against the interests of humanity.’ ”
“A joint statement named ‘No to the New Cold War’ was issued in 14 languages, which epitomized a strong call for the US side to stop forming an anti-China coalition and dividing the world.”
The initiative and similar ones fall on deaf ears in Washington — letting nothing interfere with advancing its imperial aims.
A Final Comment
Surprisingly in late July, the pro-war, pro-US corporate empowerment, pro-dirty business as usual Brookings slammed Pompeo’s recent address in Yorba Linda, CA that focused on China bashing, saying the following:
Pompeo “engaged in doublespeak.”
He called for “organiz(ing) the free world, while alienating and undermining” it.
He “extol(ed) democracy while aiding and abetting its destruction .”
He “praise(d) the Chinese people while (claiming) ill intent of Chinese students who want to come to America.”
He’s loyal to Trump “who cares not one whit for democracy, dissidents, freedom, or transparency overseas.”
The same goes for Pompeo, other regime hardliners, and most congressional members.
“Pompeo has some nerve to now claim that what is upside down is right side up.”
Brookings also slammed China. It supports Washington’s imperial agenda.
It takes issues with actions by Trump, Pompeo, and likely others in his regime — while ignoring their war on humanity at home and abroad.
My two Wall Street books are timely reading:
“How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion, and Class War”
“Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity”