Look: Pelosi and China in a Spat of Words

On Wednesday, Speaker Nancy Pelosi came under fire from China’s state-run Global Times for saying China, not Taiwan, was one of the world’s freest civilizations.

The communist newspaper’s haughty indignation that anybody would dare disparage China as being “free” included an element of dark humor.

What Happened?

During an appearance with NBC’s Today program on Tuesday, Pelosi made the mistake.

Pelosi defended her travel to Taiwan by claiming it was “just about stating China is one of the freest civilizations in the world.” Chinese spin doctors weren’t the only ones to notice this.

She said, “Don’t accept it from me; that was from Freedom House.”

Of course, Freedom House never would imagine listing Communist China as one of the world’s most liberated nations. The human rights group now rates China at nine out of 100, classifying it as “Not Free” and placing it among the worst autocracies on the planet.

China pulled off the deft move of receiving a low rating for political rights, which is difficult to do without using chemical and cluster bombs to target voters.

Taiwan, in contrast, has a “Free” score of 94 percent, placing it in the top 20 free nations according to Freedom House.

Even though Taiwan’s most recent elections “included internet misinformation and influence activities that were ascribed to the Chinese government,” it received top grades for political freedom.

Although Pelosi’s staff hurried to emphasize she obviously meant Taiwan, not China, the Global Times seized on her remarks even more than conservatives, who, in the eyes of the American media, are reigning champion seizers and pouncers.

The Republican National Committee did nothing more than share the Pelosi video without saying anything, but the Global Times completely lost it.

China’s Angry

The interview’s background and stumbles made it clear that Pelosi was extremely uncomfortable and worried.

Shen Yi, an international affairs professor at Fudan University, made the observation that she attempted to explain her trip by highlighting its importance for ideologies like so-called liberty and democracy.

However, the professor said Pelosi also maintained that her provocative tour did not contravene the one-China policy.

“This is due to the fact Pelosi is aware she has caused difficulty and her irresponsible tour seriously pushed China’s red line. As a consequence, she was seeking to avoid her proper role, rather than highlighting the ‘success’ of her visit.”

“Her tongue-twisting garnered much notice and led to further censure in US public opinion. Many of the people who criticize Pelosi do not even accept the justification that a statement like that was a tongue slip.”

“This is a result of the US-stoked anti-China and anti-communist frenzy. Inflamed by Pelosi-affiliated China hawks, American hostility toward China has descended into irrationality and frenzy.”

“Pelosi had to eat her own bad fruit in return,” Shen said.