Progression in Sino-US ties despite friction

Source:Global Times Published: 2015-9-17 0:23:01

Both China and the US announced Wednesday that Chinese President Xi Jinping will make a state visit to the US from September 22 to 25. This event, even before it was officially announced, has already become one of the most anticipated on the world stage this year. Now, the official countdown is on.

Recently, friction between the two over cyber security, the South China Sea, human rights and the economy has increased. Some US strategists have suggested adopting tougher policies on China. Chinese society is becoming more vigilant toward the US.

It is against this backdrop that Xi will visit the US. Both states have attached great importance to it. Some Americans have hyped up critical issues between the two, gathering more attention.

There are major questions surrounding Sino-US relations as to how they can remain stable when friction instantly occurs and strategic distrust lingers. This also impacts the question of maintaining people's confidence in the two countries' ability to avoid the old confrontational path.

Xi and US President Barack Obama have met several times and talked extensively and profoundly. These meetings have encouraged both countries to send goodwill to the other and emphasized the necessity and possibility of cooperation, despite disputes.

Some US scholars are elevating bilateral conflicts over cyber security and the South China Sea to a strategic height. But the top strategic issue between the two is whether they are both willing and capable of maintaining a peaceful cooperative atmosphere.

The benefits of cooperation matter to both countries and they should seek to maximize these benefits.

Meanwhile, the two should be clear about the losses brought about by non-cooperation or even confrontation.

If these two powerful sides fall into a strategic confrontation, one would be hard-pressed to say who could be victorious, so cooperation has become the only option for the two.

The general public in both China and the US and some American elites hold irrational attitudes toward Sino-US relations.

Some people often compare Sino-US relations with ties between the US and the Soviet Union in the past. However, there are much more differences than similarities between the two.

Wu Xinbo, an expert on Sino-US relations, noted that the two should try to solve their discrepancies. If they cannot control the unsolvable ones, they should separate them with bilateral ties and not let thorny issues jeopardize their relationship. This is a pragmatic principle and a strategic approach.

The core of handling Sino-US relations is to seek truth from facts. Both know that concepts such as containment and challenge will burden bilateral ties. Their relationship should proceed with expanding communications.

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