By Lia Zhu, in San Francisco
May 29, 2021 China Daily
The trade union of the City University of New York, the largest urban university in the United States, adopted a resolution opposing the government’s “belligerence” toward China and calling on other labor bodies to build a movement against a Cold War with China.
The resolution is entitled “No Cold War with China”. It was adopted this week by the Professional Staff Congress, or PSC, of the university, also known as CUNY. It represents 30,000 faculty and staff at the school and the CUNY Research Foundation.
“The PSC opposes and rejects the steady buildup to war with China by the US government, and declares that as anti-war US trade unionists and educators, it is our duty to join in solidarity with Chinese fellow-workers, educators and scholars to oppose US military spending for a Cold War in China, which leads to further racism at home,” the resolution said.
“We feel very strongly that the United States is spending far too much money on the military for war buildup with China and creating a new arms race against a country that is peaceful and has contributed to the reduction in poverty on a global level and within China itself as well,” Immanuel Ness, head of the international affairs committee of the PSC Union, told China Daily.
Last month, the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee passed the Strategic Competition Act of 2021, a bill designed to counter China. It proposes $655 million in foreign military financing funding for the Indo-Pacific region and $450 million for the Indo-Pacific Maritime Security Initiative and related programs.
The military spending recommended by the bill is “very dangerous”, and would “only lead to further conflict”, said Ness, who is also professor and chair of the political science department of Brooklyn College at CUNY.
He added he saw no basis for the US being so hostile toward China when the country has contributed to the development of other countries.
“China fought fascism during World War II. I think we have to honor what the Chinese did in fighting against fascism. As the United States entered into the war, the Chinese people had played a very important role in that,” said Ness.
The resolution also said “a Cold War with China harms students, researchers and educators in China and the US by erecting barriers to international academic collaboration and exchange”.
The “war on terror” tells the lesson that wars “abroad” often translate into wars at “home”, with the violent targeting of racialized communities, the resolution added.
“So these are very concerning times for people who care about peace,” said Ness.
The text of the final approved union resolution is below:
No Cold War with China
Whereas, US belligerence towards China is growing in what some call a Cold War with China;
Whereas, we have learned from the “war on terror” that wars “abroad” often translate into wars at “home”, with the violent targeting of racialized communities;
Whereas incessant China-bashing by the mainstream media is inflaming imperialist, xenophobic, racist, and misogynist ideologies, triggering violence against Chinese, Chinese-American and Asian communities at home, such as the March 16, 2021 shooting of six Asian women in Atlanta, and the more than 3,700 incidents of violence, discrimination, and violations of civil rights against Asian Americans reported since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, some of which directly impact CUNY students, workers and the broader community;
Whereas, anti-Chinese racism has long roots in the U.S., including the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act and the exploitation of Chinese workers who built the transcontinental railroad, the current demonization of China serves as a distraction from the coronavirus pandemic and weakening economy at home;
Whereas US military spending is expanding at the expense of funding education, healthcare, housing, and other essential social needs;
Whereas, a Cold War with China harms students, researchers and educators in China and the U.S. by erecting barriers to international academic collaboration and exchange;
Whereas, the PSC, in solidarity with international workers traumatized by US wars and military occupation of their homelands, has consistently declared its resolute support for anti-war campaigns, and successfully brought anti-war resolutions for adoption by our affiliates NYSUT and the AFT;
Whereas, we are still learning that ‘cold’ and ‘hot’ wars leave wounds that never heal and permanent scars on peoples, nations, and even landscapes;
Therefore be it resolved, that the PSC opposes and rejects the steady build-up to war with China by the US government, and declares that as anti-war US trade unionists and educators it is our duty to join in solidarity with Chinese fellow-workers, educators and scholars to oppose US military spending for a Cold War in China, which leads to further racism at home; and
Be it further resolved, that the PSC will bring this resolution forward for consideration by our state affiliate NYSUT, our national affiliate the AFT, and other labor bodies, so as to build a movement among US teachers and unionists against a Cold War with China.
-Submitted by the International Committee
 Yeung, R., Yellow Horse, A., Popovic, T., Lim, R., Stop AAPI Hate National Report, February 28, 2021 [online] https://caasf.org/stop-aapi-hate/. Accessed March 19, 2021.