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Former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley warned Sunday that China has been building up its defenses and military for “decades” to prepare for war with the United States.
Appearing on “Fox News Sunday,” Haley, who is running for the GOP presidential nomination, told host Shannon Bream that the U.S. military under President Joe Biden is focusing on things that won’t help in a conflict with China, including radical gender ideology. In the meantime, Haley says, China has rapidly improved its military might.
“If you look at the military situation, they now have the largest naval fleet in the world. They have 340 ships, we have 293. They’re going to have 400 in two years, we won’t even have 350 in two decades,” Haley told Bream. “They have started developing hypersonic missiles. We’re just now getting started. They are modernizing their military. Our military’s taking gender pronoun classes. Look at what they’re doing on cyber, artificial intelligence, space – they’re ahead of us.”
“We have some work to do,” Haley said.
Haley went on to say the United States must begin strengthening its military because China has been “preparing for war with us for decades.” She said that the American relationship with China cannot be put on the back burner — it’s an issue the country must focus on “today.”
The presidential contender said the U.S. must deal with China diplomatically, economically, and militarily. She added that issues that can be resolved quickly include ending Chinese entities purchasing American farmland, stopping Chinese propaganda in American universities, and making sure China stops “bringing the fentanyl across the border.”
“Let’s stop the lobbying that is happening from Chinese companies that are just a front for the Chinese Communist Party,” Haley added, specifically mentioning Huawei, Tencent, and Alibaba.
Last week, Haley made headlines after she said China is “much more than a mere ‘competitor’ — Communist China is an enemy,” prompting a response from the Chinese embassy in the United States.
“Only those who draw attention by smearing and blame-shifting in the election campaign will end up on the ash heap of history,” Liu Pengyu, spokesman for the Chinese embassy in Washington, D.C., told Reuters.
In response, Haley blasted the Chinese for their role in the American fentanyl crisis, saying the U.S. and Chinese relationship would be “much better” if China stopped spying, “robbing” American businesses, and “threatening” American allies militarily.
Haley served as ambassador to the United Nations from 2017 to 2018 during the Trump administration. She is currently polling at 3% in the race for the Republican nomination, behind former President Donald Trump, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, former Vice President Mike Pence, and entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, according to a recent Morning Consult poll.