Anti-war organizations in the US are calling on politicians to end what they say is aggression toward China that "feeds anti-Asian attacks at home and a cold war abroad".
"The US is waging a cold war against China that could lead us to a real war resulting in unbelievable harm to the people in both countries and the world," said Julie Tang, co-founder of Pivot to Peace, an organization dedicated to advocating US-China peace.
Despite the "futility of the trade war which harmed Americans more than China", the US administration continues "information warfare as a tool to manufacture consent from the public for a full cold war against China", Tang told the audience at a webinar hosted by Code Pink, a grassroots organization working to end what it says is US militarism.
The anti-China tactics of the US administration include employing tools of economics and the law, diplomatic maneuvers, a military buildup in the South China Sea, support for "color revolutions" in Hong Kong and Xinjiang and attacks on Chinese students and scholars in the United States, she said.
"This kind of confrontation has an equally dangerous and harmful effect on America and Americans, and especially on Chinese Americans," said Tang, a retired judge of the San Francisco Superior Court. "We have seen a level of racism that has not been seen in the last 50 years."
From about 2018 US mainstream media started running articles that painted China "in an extremely negative light", she said.
"What they said about China is a very different China that I know and personally experience." When the pandemic started and US President Donald Trump used the term "China virus", the US public was "sufficiently prepped to blame China and impliedly consented to a cold war with China", she said.
To help end the conflict with China, Code Pink is petitioning the Democratic vice-presidential nominee Kamala Harris, a California senator, to stand with Asian communities throughout the US and push the Joe Biden team to recognize that "China is not our enemy".
The document garnered more than 1,200 signatures, mostly non-Chinese names, in just two days.
"It is clear people don't want racism in the United States," said Jodie Evans, co-founder of Code Pink, adding that Americans should "do better on knowing who the Chinese are before we start to hate them".
The organization has also partnered with groups such as Pivot to Peace and Veterans For Peace to launch a webinar series called "China Is Not Our Enemy" with the aim of "dismantling the US White House led anti-China rhetoric".
China is a civilization that simply maintained itself within its natural limits and it did not overextend itself by world-conquering campaigns as other empires did, said Michael Wong, vice-president of Veterans For Peace's Chapter 69 in San Francisco.
"World conquests would eventually lead to its downfall. And the dilemma that the United States finds itself in, trying to extend power all around the world, demonstrates the wisdom of the Chinese strategy."
China "has really set a standard "in dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, Tang said. "Our COVID-19 cases are surging every day, while the economy is still in a standstill. Meanwhile, China's economy is surging ahead of other major economies … Furthermore, the United States is still reliant on government stimulus to save the economy; China's economy rebounds on a strong foundation of industrial production and retail sales."
Especially in the area of developing COVID-19 vaccines, Americans should demand that the government start to work with China, Tang said.
"China is very advanced in biomedicine and advanced in all kinds of technologies, so exchanges between the two countries in those areas can greatly benefit both countries."