TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A Swedish cartoonist created an illustration depicting President Joe Biden toting a much bigger gun that Chinese leader Xi Jinping (習近平) under the table like a prelude to a Wild West showdown.
Swedish journalist Jojje Olsson on his news blog Kinamedia on Saturday (Nov. 18) posted an article titled "Satire: An old man with the biggest gun of the Wild West" and included an illustration by Swedish artist Niklas Eriksson (@KluddNiklas). Olsson wrote that albeit appearing more frail than former President Donald Trump, Biden has managed to rally key allies to "impose sanctions affecting an already battered Chinese economy, and oppose Beijing's claims on Taiwan and other 'core interests.'"
According to Olsson, although Xi appears more spry and has a "better head of hair" than Biden, under the table the U.S. president is carrying the bigger gun as the two feud over world order in the "good old Wild West territory."
When asked about his inspiration for the illustration, Olsson told Taiwan News that it is partially derived from a New York Times article titled "For Biden, a Subtle Shift in the Power Balance With China’s Xi Jinping." The article observed that China's economic crisis and a series of technology export controls imposed by Washington have prompted at least a temporary pause in Beijing's "wolf warrior diplomacy" as it seeks vital financial investment from the U.S.
On Wednesday (Nov. 15), Biden and Xi met for four hours on the sidelines of the APEC Summit in San Francisco, covering issues such as Taiwan, military communication, combating fentanyl trafficking, and AI. After the meeting, Biden said, “I made clear I didn't expect any interference" in Taiwan's elections and also stressed that Xi must "respect and cooperate with the winner."
For his part, Xi reportedly said that the U.S. should "honor its commitment of not supporting 'Taiwan independence,' stop arming Taiwan, and support China's peaceful reunification." Xi denied reports that China was planning to invade Taiwan in 2027, but also laid out the conditions under which force would be employed.
Click on the image below to see the full-size version:
(Kinamedia, @KluddNiklas illustration)