Details of the negotiations that took place between the U.S. administration and CCP officials regarding the fate of Chen Guangcheng were leaked to the public in a New York Times article. They reveal that the U.S. is taking a dangerously soft tone with the CCP.
First, the CCP's State Council and the Political and Legislative Affairs Committee were both involved in the negotiations. Deputy Foreign Minister Cui represented the State Council. The person representing the Political and Legislative Affairs Committee remains a mystery.
U.S. State Department legal adviser, Harold Koh confirmed that officials from the Chinese Ministry of State Security, growled and shouted that Chen Guangcheng should be punished, not coddled by the Americans.
Second, the U.S. has misjudged China's political situation. The U.S. has handled the Chen Guangcheng case in-line with the form of the 1972 Sino-US Shanghai Communique. This means that the U.S. administration believes that if they allow the CCP to save face, it will give Chen Guangcheng his freedom in exchange.
While the U.S. and Communist China do not have any formal agreements about this in place, they do have a simple consensus.
U.S. officials explained that the "Shanghai Communique" officially opened US-China relations. As a result, both U.S. President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary have kept silent on Chen Guangcheng even when asked by media.
May 4th Hillary met with Dai Bingguo, and she pressed him to allow Mr Chen to go the U.S. But to allow the CCP to save face she did not to mention Chen Guangcheng's name at a later press conference.
Perhaps, through the Chen Guangcheng case, the U.S. administration has begun to realize that the CCP is split into the reformist and blood-debt factions--two non-compromising camps that are fighting for control of the CCP.
U.S. officials have misinterpreted the current situation. China is facing serious social crises: crisis within the party, environmental crisis, economic crisis, and fierce factional in-fighting that is tearing the CCP apart. These crises cannot be resolved.
At Brandenburg Gate in West Berlin on June 12, 1987, U.S. President Ronald Reagan sent a message to Mikhail Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin Wall and it did fall two years later. Both Reagan and Gorbachev became heros.
History offers U.S. President Barack Obama an opportunity to face down China, but he needs to play the role of Reagan, not Nixon.