China's state media hits back at US on trade

Beijing (AFP) –


Beijing unleashed its tightly controlled media this week after keeping a lid on rhetoric for months as the trade war with Washington reignited, with fiery clips from state media ricocheting around the internet.

The spree of editorials and commentaries in China's state media Monday and Tuesday ramped up attacks on Washington and its trade tactics, with Beijing rolling out the propaganda campaign in synch with its retaliation on US goods.

China announced Monday it would raise tariffs on $60 billion in US exports by next month, responding in kind to President Donald Trump's decision last week to hike duties on hundreds of billions of dollars in Chinese merchandise.

The barrage began Monday night during state broadcaster CCTV's primetime newscast watched across China.

"China has already given its answer: talk and the door is open, fight and we'll fight you to the end," an anchor read, looking directly at the camera.

"Through 5,000 years of ups and downs, what kind of battle has the Chinese nation not seen! During the great process of realising national rejuvenation, there will inevitably be difficulties, obstacles and even storms," he read.

"China's policy toolbox is ready and prepared for a comprehensive response."

The clip ricocheted around the Chinese internet, trending on Twitter-like Weibo and Wechat, and inviting a massive show of support from the country's legions of netizens.

Official news agency Xinhua on Tuesday accused the United States of "using underhanded means to achieve its aim" and "downright bullying" in an editorial.

If the US thinks it "can achieve its goals with trade bullying, it is really underestimating the will and determination of the Chinese people to defend their core interests," the editorial said.