China’s independence an aid to diplomacy

Source:Global Times Published: 2014-2-14 0:28:02

US Secretary of State John Kerry kicks off his visit to China today. His Asian tour includes four countries but not Japan. It is reported that US President Barack Obama will lead another tour across Asia in April where he will travel to Tokyo instead of Beijing. Japanese analysts, therefore, have begun to calculate whether Washington is attaching more importance to China or to its old ally Japan.

With its lack of self-confidence, the present-day Japan puts great emphasis on each and every visit by US top officials and yearns for their support. Given Tokyo has sabotaged all its relations with peripheral countries, it is becoming keener on clinging to its alliance with Uncle Sam so that every single isolated word from the US can make it feel either complacent or downcast.

Though Sino-US relations are also quite important for China, the Chinese currently have an easy attitude. The ties between the US and Japan are like that between a master and a servant while the Beijing-Washington relationship is based on an equal footing. China enjoys a high degree of independence in politics, defense and diplomacy. The overall architecture for Sino-US relations has taken shape and Beijing is witnessing a growing strategic initiative on the relationship. Consequently we are spared feeling jittery about such specific details of high-level mutual visits.

Notwithstanding these positive signs, the US "rebalancing Asia" policy has triggered pressure on China's strategies. Because convincing Washington with reason and logic is nowhere near sufficient to make it more friendly, we are supposed to give full play to our strategic independence and create more diplomatic space in addition to the most powerful nation, which will help crimp its hostility toward us.

Communication will, of course, play a part in prompting Washington to take a moderate stance toward China, but what's more significant is that we must make more friends with a more proactive foreign policy.

Engaging in more intimate Sino-Russian friendship, further beefing up the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, effectively tackling conflicts with peripheral countries, striking a major breakthrough in relations with European powers and promoting our charisma among the Third World, will all be conducive to fueling our initiative in Sino-US relations.

However, it is always easier said than done. We are presented with a wide spectrum of thorny frictions and confrontations as an emerging power, but we should at least keep sober-minded.

It is anticipated that officials from both sides will experience smooth talks when Kerry travels to Beijing. But it should be noted Washington's China policy frequently infuriates the Chinese public.

Since his predecessor Hillary Clinton was once perceived as one of the most unpopular people among Chinese public opinion, Kerry is expected to contribute to the new type of the great power relations between Beijing and Washington.

Posted in: Editorial

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