U.S. President Joe Biden meets with Chinese President Xi Jinping at Filoli estate on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit, in Woodside, California, U.S., November 15, 2023. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
WOODSIDE, CA – In a stunning display of diplomatic finesse, President Joe Biden reportedly referred to Chinese President Xi Jinping as a "dictator" shortly after their high-profile meeting in Woodside, California, sources close to the matter revealed. The comment, initially thought to be a bold political statement, was later clarified as a misunderstanding, with Biden mistaking the term 'dictator' for a species of dinosaur.
The meeting, intended to ease tensions between the U.S. and China, took an unexpected turn when Biden, inspired by a recent visit to a natural history museum, enthusiastically shared his newfound knowledge of prehistoric creatures. "You know, Xi, you remind me of a dictator," Biden said, smiling warmly. "Massive presence, really left a mark on history."
Xi, visibly confused, was about to respond when Biden continued, "I've always been fascinated by dinosaurs. The Dictator, with its big head and tiny arms, just like in the movies!"
Aides scrambled to rectify the situation, with one whispering urgently into Biden's ear, explaining the difference between a 'dictator' and a 'Tyrannosaurus Rex'. The President, chuckling at his mistake, quickly tried to smooth things over. "What I meant was, your leadership style is... uh, historic. Yes, historic!"
Chinese officials, unsure how to respond to being indirectly compared to extinct reptiles, attempted to steer the conversation back to trade policies and climate change. However, Biden, now on a paleontological roll, inquired if Xi had ever seen the "Jurassic Park" movies, suggesting they could "learn a thing or two about handling big, scary creatures."
The White House later released a statement clarifying that the President's comments were "in no way meant to draw a parallel between the Chinese President and Cretaceous-era fauna." The statement also noted Biden's commitment to improving relations with China and his "deep respect for all forms of ancient and modern life."
Chinese state media responded to the incident by publishing an article titled "American President's Fascination with Extinct Reptiles Reflects Outdated View of World Politics," while also subtly questioning whether the U.S. was being led by a "diplomatic fossil."
In an effort to mitigate the diplomatic faux pas, the White House has reportedly sent a gift to President Xi – a deluxe box set of the "Jurassic Park" series, along with a note saying, "For your next movie night. No dictators, I promise."
At press time, Biden was seen asking his aides whether it would be appropriate to nickname Vladimir Putin 'Velociraptor' in their next meeting, citing its "crafty and strategic nature." The aides were reportedly considering a swift career change to paleontology to avoid further incidents.