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Chinese President Xi Jinping's demeanor lately has some people in China wondering why he has been "so grumpy." (Nikkei Montage/ Source photo by Reuters and Getty Images) 
China up close

Battle for hegemony: Xi knows there is no middle ground with US

Leader's goal of surpassing America has put China on an irreversible path

KATSUJI NAKAZAWA, Nikkei senior staff writer | China

TOKYO -- The U.S.-China "phase one" trade deal that was signed by U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He was pushed back to the 10th item on state-run China Central Television's main evening news program on Jan. 16.

With coverage spanning 1 minute and 44 seconds, it could easily have been missed, unless viewers remained glued to their televisions. The news was intentionally trivialized.

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