The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) mouthpiece Global Times on Wednesday responded to a Pew Research Center Poll — which revealed that unfavorable views of China have reached record highs in 14 advanced-economy countries — arguing that China does not have to take the opinions of Western nations “seriously.”
“Views of China have grown more negative in recent years across many advanced economies, and unfavorable opinion has soared over the past year,” Pew reported.
“Today, a majority in each of the surveyed countries has an unfavorable opinion of China. And in Australia, the United Kingdom, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, the United States, South Korea, Spain, and Canada, negative views have reached their highest points since the Center began polling on this topic more than a decade ago,” the research group noted.
Global Times editor-in-chief Hu Xijin blamed “Western political and public opinion elites” for the recent blow to China’s international reputation. These Western elites “have created various gimmicks to attack China and constantly poison the public’s understanding of China,” Hu claimed.
“For instance, Washington has put forward a very absurd logic that China should be held accountable for the COVID-19 [Chinese coronavirus] pandemic,” he wrote, dismissing the West’s insistence on upholding standards of accountability as “anti-intellectual and anti-scientific sophistry.”
Hu undermined the legitimate grievances Western countries have against China, including opposition to its oppression of Muslim Uyghurs in Xinjiang and its subversion of Hong Kong’s limited civil liberties. He argued that Western countries’ political action to curtail China’s human rights abuses were “radical actions” that are “suitable to the spread of populism.” The editor then urged his readers to turn inward and remain aloof in the face of a turning global tide against China.
“We don’t have to take them seriously. We have every right to live our own way. The happiness of the Chinese people is the highest goal of our country. We have the final say over what our happiness is,” Hu asserted, echoing the CCP’s call promoting an ethnic Han Chinese nationalist identity within the country.
“A most important point is, although Western elites can mislead public opinions, they can do nothing with China. China will keep advancing, and most Western countries will have to continue doing business with China,” he added.
“We don’t want bad relations with Western countries, nor will we exchange our national interests for their goodwill. Their goodwill is not so valuable,” the editor claimed.