(CNSNews.com) – The editor-in-chief of a major Chinese Communist Party newspaper posted a mocking tweet Friday about President Trump’s positive coronavirus test result, then deleted it, before publishing an article in his tabloid expressing the “hope that Chinese people restrain themselves when they comment on Trump’s infection.”
In the article, Global Times editor Hu Xijin did not mention his own tweet which, although deleted, can still be seen in archived form.
It said, “President Trump and the first lady have paid the price for his gamble to play down the COVID-19. The news shows the severity of the US’ pandemic situation. It will impose a negative impact on the image of Trump and the US, and may also negatively affect his reelection.”
In the subsequent article posted in the CCP mouthpiece over the weekend, Hu complained that Trump administration officials continue to blame China for the coronavirus outbreak, and called their statements “disrespectful toward the Trump family.”
Hu pointed specifically to comments made by Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and some Republican lawmakers during a House Coronavirus subcommittee hearing on Friday, charging that they “continued to viciously attack China.”
“Their actions are disrespectful toward the Trump family and fail to create a supportive environment they need to recover,” he wrote.
Hu said it was “only normal” to wish Trump and the first lady well through their recovery,” and made a point of noting that, after Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying posted a tweet expressing best wishes and hopes for a speedy recovery, he – “as an active member working for a Chinese media outlet” – had retweeted it.
Although it was “only natural that Chinese people feel upset with the U.S.’ increasingly extreme China policy,” he wrote, “I hope that Chinese people restrain themselves when they comment on Trump’s infection. Such restraint would be noticed in the internet era with highly globalized information, and will lead to positive impacts, though no one has the right to point fingers at Chinese society’s narratives and behaviors.”
Hu’s Global Times over the weekend also highlighted the fact that Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife, Peng Liyuan, had sent a message wishing the president and first lady a speedy recovery. The CCP organ cited Chinese analysts as saying the message from Xi was a reflection of China’s “decency.”
The Trump administration accuses China of trying to cover up the outbreak in Wuhan early on, punishing and silencing doctors and scientists who raised the alarm, restricting domestic travel while permitted international travel from the epicenter, and blocking for weeks attempts by the U.S. and others to get experts into the country and into Wuhan.
Global Times is one of nine Chinese media organizations which the U.S. government this year designated as “foreign missions,” determining that they are “either substantially owned or effectively controlled by a foreign government.” The designation sets limits on the number of Chinese nationals allowed to be employed at the organizations’ U.S. offices.
In retaliation for the first of two designation announcements, Beijing barred journalists working for the New York Times, Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal from working in China.