A couple days ago, the Treasury Department issued sanctions against China, Russia, and North Korea. Before now, we had bent over backwards to assure the Chinese government that sanctions were on individuals, but now the Treasury has specified that this is, in fact, a sanction on China itself. Two entities happen to be located on Peace Road (和平路), which is awesomely ironic, but other sanctions weren’t so funny.
When I was living in China, I could smell the shadiness of businesses. In architecture, the front of a building is often called a facade. That’s the doorway, maybe an archway, the name of the restaurant, maybe some fancy lights. In China, however, the word “facade” takes on a new meaning because, before you even walk in, you KNOW something’s not right.
In fact, I’ve learned that, in a restaurant, you often don’t want to be opening random doors thinking it might be the bathroom. I opened a door once and there was this guy counting such a huge wad of cash–all 100’s–that my next observation was that his hands were gigantic. He looked at me, didn’t say a word, as if he knew I was aware that I should probably just close the door and not tell anyone about it.
Well, that’s the last time I go to Little Russia in China.
Now, China has recently signed on to unanimous UN Security Council sanctions against North Korea and had previously issued its own independent import ban on North Korean for one year, moving 10,000 troops to their shared border to protect against an influx of North Korean refugees. They also previously vetoed UN Security Council sanctions and blocked action against North Korea numerous times. So it’s a mixed bag.
So what’s in these sanctions and what reason did the Trump Administration give for issuing them?