Home > FisForFriday > FisForFriday: FIGHT (USA vs. CHINA) WW3 Coming Soon

FisForFriday: FIGHT (USA vs. CHINA) WW3 Coming Soon

USA and China relations are in some turmoil after recent activities across the globe:

1.  USA media brawl vs. China media

Vice President Joe Biden, known for his public-speaking stamina as well as for off-the-cuff comments that have landed him in trouble,  sparked a brawl last night between the press and Chinese officials  during a long-running speech.

During a meeting with Chinese Vice President Xi Jingping Thursday in China, Biden followed up on Xi’s remarks by giving his own speech. And as Biden delivered his stem-winder, the White House pool reports that a “larger Chinese official” attempted to force the reporters out of the room, causing a near brawl.

“Stern shooing turned into forceful shoving,” pool reporter Michael Memoli later wrote for the Los Angeles Times. “As reporters tried to stand their ground, Chinese officials locked arms and pushed forward in a show of overwhelming force.”

“Officials said Biden was going on too long, though he at that point had not spoken for more than 5-6 minutes, including the consecutive translation,” according to the pool report.

Reporters had difficulty hearing the speech due to the “fisticuffs” as Memoli described it, and gave up when it was clear Biden was finishing up.

Chinese officials attempted to clear the room early at a second event Thursday, though the pool report for that gathering doesn’t indicate that any altercation broke out.

Apparently, reporters had been warned of potentially over-aggressive behavior from their Chinese hosts, but Memoli noted that reporters and staff said they had never witnessed that level of “aggressive force” at such an event.

2.  Georgetown College Basketball Team Brawl vs. China Team

What began as a goodwill trip to China for the Georgetown men’s basketball team turned violent Thursday night when its exhibition game against a Chinese professional club deteriorated into a benches-clearing melee in which players exchanged blows, chairs were thrown and spectators tossed full water bottles at Hoyas players and coaches as they headed to the locker room.

Georgetown Coach John Thompson III pulled his players off the Olympic Sports Center Stadium court with 9 minutes 32 seconds left in the game and the scored tied at 64 after a chaotic scene in which members of the Georgetown and Bayi Military Rockets teams began swinging wildly and tackling one another.


The Washington Post’s Gene Wang reports on the brawl that ended a basketball game between the Georgetown Hoyas and Bayi Rockets in Beijing after a Georgetown player was fouled.

There were an estimated half-dozen individual altercations on the court, and eventually some Chinese onlookers joined the fracas, including one wielding a stanchion. As the brawl spilled beyond the baseline, an unidentified Bayi player pushed Georgetown’s Aaron Bowen through a partition to the ground before repeatedly punching the sophomore guard while sitting on his chest.

Georgetown senior center Henry Sims had a chair tossed at him by an unidentified person, and freshman forward Moses Ayegba, who was wearing a brace on his right leg, limped onto the court with a chair in his right hand. According to Georgetown officials, Ayegba had been struck, prompting him to grab a chair in self-defense.

The brawl occurred one night after Vice President Biden, who is in Beijing on a four-day visit to discuss U.S.-Chinese economic relations, attended a Georgetown game against another Chinese club at the Olympic Sports Center. That game, which was won by Georgetown, passed without incident.

The turbulent ending to Thursday night’s contest marred what had been billed as the second game of a two-day “China-U.S. Basketball Friendship Match” in Beijing. Georgetown intended for the team’s 10-day trip to China to be an athletic, cultural and educational exchange designed to promote the school internationally.

It was unclear whether the brawl would affect similar ventures in the future. The Georgetown delegation, which included university President John DeGioia, other school officials and prominent alumni and boosters, was scheduled to fly to Shanghai on Friday. Thompson said the team would continue with the remainder of its itinerary.

A State Department official and a Chinese Embassy spokesman in Washington both called the melee “unfortunate.”

“We look to these types of exchanges to promote good sportsmanship and strengthen our people-to-people contact with China,” said the U.S. official, who was not authorized to speak for attribution.

“We believe the organizers of the matches and the two teams will address the issue properly, the sportsmanship and people-to-people friendship the matches are meant to represent will prevail,” said the Chinese spokesman, Wang Baodong, in an e-mail.

Xinhua News Agency, China’s official news service, did not have an immediate account of the game, and although other prominent Chinese Web sites such as 163.com and sina.composted stories, government censors shortly thereafter took them down.


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