Boycott China, Not France

Mar 20, 2003
George Anderson

By George Anderson

Thane Peterson of BusinessWeek argues Americans looking to make a statement by boycotting goods of countries opposing US military action in Iraq should forget about punishing the French and Germans and concentrate on the Chinese.

French and German opposition is a testament to US involvement in Europe in the last century, writes Mr. Peterson. “The fact that Germany — formerly one of the most warlike nations on earth — is now standing up to the U.S. in the name of world peace is a triumph, not a defeat, for world democracy. American soldiers didn’t fight and die in World War II to establish lapdog governments in Europe. The goal was to promote freedom and democracy — which, whether you agree with their specific policies or not, is what we now have in France and Germany.”

China has strongly condemned US military action. A Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Kong Quan told Al Bawaba, “They ignored the opposition of most countries and peoples of the world and went around the U.N. Security Council to begin military action against Iraq. This constitutes a violation of the U.N. charter and the basic norms of international law.”

The US’ record trade deficit can be tied directly to Chinese imports, writes Mr. Peterson. “If you stroll around stores such as Wal-Mart, Target, and Sears checking the labels on products, the big retailers start to look like giant funnels for cheap Chinese clothes, sports equipment, toys, and other goods.”

Moderator’s Comment: Should US retailers suspend selling
“Made in China” goods? Do you see any difference between calls for boycotts
against the French and those against the Chinese?

We remain committed to our previously stated position.
Let the consumer decide. If consumers refuse to buy Chinese goods then retailers
will stop selling them. [George
Anderson – Moderator

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