A contest of three kingdoms

On Monday, US President Joseph Biden and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping held their first, long-awaited meeting. It was virtual because of Covid restrictions but perhaps also to minimize the expected chafing between the two leaders.

The summit was about managing the tension, not letting it get out of hand, and fixing some guardrails to avoid a sudden and unintended wrecking of the situation.

Then it affirmed that both the US and China de facto agree they are in a Cold War. China gave up on the idea of going back to a status quo ante. The US doesn’t want the growing strain to get it out of control.

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