MARKHAM, ON, June 28, 2020 /CNW/ - The new book by Donald Trump's former National Security Advisor reveals that, from the start, the President of the United States viewed the arrest and detention of Meng Wanzhou, Chief Financial Officer of Huawei, as a way of exerting political leverage – not as a matter of justice.
In The Room Where it Happened, John Bolton writes: "At the December 7  White House Christmas dinner, Trump raised Meng's arrest, riffing about how much pressure this put on China."
According to Bolton, Trump viewed Ms. Meng as a prominent Chinese citizen – "the Ivanka Trump of China," in the President's words – whose freedom could be a powerful bargaining chip in trade negotiations with China. As Bolton puts it: "…Trump believed everything was open in trade negotiations."
Bolton's recollection of events is supported by Trump's own public comments days after Ms. Meng's arrest: He said he would interfere politically in the case if it helped the U.S.-China relationship. "If I think it's good for what will be certainly the largest trade deal ever made – which is a very important thing – what's good for national security, I would certainly intervene if I thought it was necessary," the President said in December 2018.
In Donald Trump's eyes the charges against Ms. Meng have always been a bargaining chip to be used to negotiate a trade deal with China and enhance his chances at re-election in November.
This reckless and unethical perspective has left the government of Canada in an extremely difficult situation – caught in the middle of an escalating dispute between two global powers.
It is the duty of the President of the United States to uphold the law – not to manipulate it for his own political benefit. We call on the Trump administration to immediately withdraw the charges against Meng Wanzhou.