Geopolitical games shouldn’t divert China

Source:Global Times Published: 2016/8/31 22:28:39

According to Japanese media, the government of Shinzo Abe is planning to prioritize economic cooperation with Russia, despite the lack of progress in their long-standing territorial dispute. This can be seen as a significant change in Japan's policy toward Russia. Abe is also reportedly going to attend the Eastern Economic Forum scheduled to be held in Russia's Far Eastern city of Vladivostok from Friday where he will meet Russian President Vladimir Putin. The leaders of the two states are expected to work on eight economic cooperation plans.

Japan's moves can easily be viewed as imposing geopolitical pressure on China through improving ties with Russia.

To China's south, US President Barack Obama will head to Laos for the East Asia Summit, after attending the G20 summit to be held in China's eastern city of Hangzhou over the weekend. He will be the first incumbent US president to visit Laos, and this has been interpreted as his last efforts to address his pivot to the Asia-Pacific strategy before he leaves office.

Currently, Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar is in the US to sign a logistics agreement with the US, and some US media explicitly said that this signals that India is leaning toward the US alliance system.

China seems to be positioned in the center of the geopolitical maneuvers by the US and Japan. But Beijing should not let its attention be led by the two. Geopolitics in the 21st century is not like the traditional game of Go where every piece aims to encircle the others.

The outside world has miscalculated geopolitics by interpreting China's diplomacy.

Is China "encircling" the US when Chinese leaders visited Cuba or Mexico? Was China extending its footprints to the US' backyard when it enhanced economic cooperation with Latin American countries? In Asia, China keeps increasing its investment in Sri Lanka. Is China rivaling with India?

The US and Japan have the motivations to initiate a geopolitical competition with China, but China will not be made to give in. Myanmar is a neighbor of China that Washington and Tokyo have been particularly keen to court. Nonetheless, after Aung San Suu Kyi's recent China visit, the relationship between China and Myanmar is steering to the opposite direction to the wishes of the US and Japan. The arbitration case around the South China Sea, a contention point between China and the US, will eventually prove beneficial for China.

China has just become a real major power. China needs to develop modern national defense, and at the same time keep long-term economic vitality and expand its vision. The Chinese military should become so strong that we can withstand any external military pressure. The Chinese economy should retain its momentum of long-term prosperity that will surpass that of the US.

This is the primary task for China, and we should not let our attention be diverted by the clamorous geopolitical rivalry in the Asia-Pacific.

Posted in: Editorial

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