China’s 19th Communist Party Congress wrapped up in Beijing recently with the decision to weave President Xi Jinping’s name into the party’s constitution alongside Mao Zedong. Soon after, U.S. President Donald Trump congratulated Xi and then told a reporter, “Now some people may call him the king of China.” In between these moments, the White House confirmed that Trump would skip the annual East Asia Summit, a gathering of 18 Asia-Pacific leaders, to shave a day off of his upcoming, marathon first trip to Asia as president. This must seem like a terrific coronation gift for the new “king,” whose country will now be the dominant world power at the summit.
The above excerpt was originally published in Foreign Policy.
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