Wednesday (May 6th): A War for Interpretational Sovereignty

Mike Pompeo

Name? Mike Pompeo

Westphalian identity? US American

Age? 56

Why is he in the news? He has been very outspoken about Covid-19 and how there is “enormous evidence” that it emerged in a Chinese laboratory in Wuhan. Usually, we ignore claims like this from the current US administration but today something was different. 

Why do we care? Every morning we read our newspaper but not only one, we read (glance) through multiple newspapers to grasp what different countries think about the same issues. This morning, we stumbled across two “interesting articles” both “unique” in their own ways. One from Fox News and one from Global Times, both aimed at Pompeo’s statement two days ago. We have now entered the next stage of the struggle for influence between the United States and China. While Pompeo’s and Trump’s claims can be seen as campaigning for the presidential elections, they are also aiming at interpretational sovereignty over Covid-19. China has been very actively trying to persuade the world of the superiority of the Chinese model when fighting Covid-19 and this has the US pushing back. 

Why should you care? Depending on where you are from, your leaders might be choosing sides already. While the US has distributed ventilators to Latin American countries, China has been very active in Europe, sending material to Italy or Serbia for an example. 

Who else cares? Diplomats all over the world have been sucked into this conflict for influence as well, some more than they liked. Specifically, Dutch diplomats have been at the receiving end of Wolf Warrior Diplomacy for the past few weeks. 

Any further comments? Reading Fox News or the Global Times has proved worth it in the past few days. Don’t forget that only one of them is active state propaganda…

Joshua Dario Hasenstab

General Coordinator