Whiff punish Gief’s lariat with a sweep. If this is proving too risky for you, you can also try to react to which lariat they are doing and just walk up st.MK or st.HK to either punish, push them away, or counterpoke their follow up poke. Use st.HP as an anti-air, it works extremely well against Gief’s jump attacks.
Learn to use your normals or make risky jump forward attempts. Dictator is not a character where his special moves will save you. You need a lot of knowledge and experience in knowing where and when to use his normal and command normal attacks. It’s part of what makes his design extremely unique and interesting.