President Joe Biden delivered an address to a joint session of the US Congress on the day prior to April 29 which marked his first 100 days in office as the US President. In his address, the President explicitly stated that China is an autocratic state, and what he stressed was that due to this autocracy of China, the US is in competition with China, and he is confident that democracy of the US will definitely win this competition in the 21st century.
During his first 100 days, the President continued to recognize that the conflict between the US and China was primarily caused by China’s autocracy and that the US was fighting against this autocracy. When President Biden talked with China’s President Xi Jinping over the telephone on February 10, he affirmed that the US would maintain a strong military presence to preserve peace in the free and open Indo-Pacific Region, and underlined that the US was concerned about the Chinese government’s abuses of the Uyghur people’s human rights in Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. On March 12, President Biden convened a virtual summit meeting of Australia, India, Japan and the US, the four member countries of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) which was established in 2007 based on Japan’s former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s proposal. At this virtual meeting, the President stated that the US would take the lead in promoting the Free and Open Indo-Pacific (FOIP) aiming to contribute to peace, stability and prosperity in the region which was proposed by the former Prime Minister Abe in his keynote speech at the TICAD IV held in Kenya in 2016. Among others, the US imposed economic sanctions on the Chinese government for its abuses of the Uyghur people’s human rights. Some of the European countries and the EU, which had been alienated from President Trump’s regime, followed President Biden’s sanctions. Before his inauguration as the President of the US on January 20, there were concerns that President Biden might take a reconciliation policy toward China unlike the former President Trump, but his performance over the past 100 days has wiped out the concerns almost completely.
Japan is in a position to adhere to and defend international order and democracy, and is now facing a threat directly from China which intends to invade into the Senkaku Islands, frequently intruding into the territorial waters surrounding the Islands. With regard to the Chinese government’s abuses of the Uyghur people’s human rights and oppression of the Hong Kong people, Japan is the only country among all the members of the G7 countries that has not yet imposed any economic sanctions on the Chinese government for its unlawful acts nor taken any visible actions to accuse the Chinese government of its unlawful acts, though the Japanese government lodged a protest with the Chinese government through the diplomatic channel. President Biden regarded the Chinese government’s recent unlawful acts as a threat to democracy of the US, and felt a sense of crisis about it. We, the Japanese people, should feel much more crisis about China’s threat than the President felt.