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While presiding over a White House in chaos, Donald Trump has managed a once-in-a-generation overhaul of America's China policy. Beijing, by contrast, has amassed enormous state capacity which it expends in a disciplined, if brutal, fashion.    © Illustration by Hiroko Oshima
The Big Story

US election: Trump's China policy is here to stay, no matter who wins

Allies see America as tougher, but weaker

RICHARD MCGREGOR, Contributing writer | North America

In mid-2018, just as Donald Trump was launching his first broadsides in a trade war against China, I arrived in Beijing on a semiregular trip to try to grasp how the country's political establishment saw the U.S. president.

That May, Trump had announced tens of billions of dollars of tariffs on Chinese goods. Soon after, with Beijing still scrambling to respond, the U.S. president announced a fresh set of import taxes.

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