Impatience with Diplomacy: Ma opposes, Wu, too

Sheep on a Rainy Day, August 2011

Sheep on a Rainy Day, August 2011

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu (马朝旭) called the U.S. Pentagon’s annual report on China’s military development “an irresponsible act which does no good to enhance China-U.S. strategic trust” (People’s Daily in English), or, as quoted by Huanqiu Shibao, “this sort of  report, gesticulating at China’s reasonable and legitimate and normal national-defense building with no lack of exaggerated content”  (这样的报告对中国正当、正常的国防建设指指点点, 其中不乏夸大内容). This was “no responsible kind of behavior, and without benefit for the promotion of Sino-American mutual strategic trust, and the Chinese side firmly opposed [the report] (这不是一种负责任的行为,无益于增进中美战略互信,中方坚决反对).

A reporter asked: the American defense department issued a Military and Security Developments Involving the People’s Republic of China report and appraisal. Do you have a comment?
有记者问:美国国防部发表2011年度《涉华军事与安全发展报告》,对中国的军事发展等作出评价。你有何评论?

Ma Zhaoxu said that the U.S. Department of Defense issued such a report year after year, gesticulating at China’s reasonable and legitimate and normal national-defense building, with no lack of exaggerations concerning China’s actual military power, spreading “Chinese military threat” content. This was no responsible kind of behavior, and without benefit for the promotion of Sino-American mutual strategic trust, and the Chinese side firmly opposed it.
马朝旭表示,美国国防部年复一年发表这样的报告,对中国正当、正常的国防建设指指点点,其中不乏夸大中国军事实力、散布“中国军事威胁论”的内容。这不是一种负责任的行为,无益于增进中美战略互信,我们坚决反对。

Ma Zhaoxu pointed out that China would unswervingly take the path of peaceful development, pursues a defensive defense policy and made efforts to protect and promote peace, stability and prosperity  in the Pacific region and even the world. China’s development of limited military power was to protect national independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity and posed no threat against any country. No country should have any misgivings about it.
马朝旭指出,中国坚定不移地走和平发展道路,奉行防御性国防政策,致力于维护和促进亚太地区乃至世界的和平、稳定与繁荣。中国发展有限的军事力量完全是为了维护国家独立、主权和领土完整,不对任何国家构成威胁,任何国家都不必对此感到疑虑。

The latest comments in a (probably heavily censored) commenting thread seem to express doubts in the strength of China’s foreign-policy position (or impatience with it), rather than explicit jingoism.

“They only know passive opposition – stupid” (只知道被动的反对,笨), comments one online reader (16:55 local time).

“Wu Jianmin says he firmly opposes” (吴建民说坚决反对), writes another reader with an apparently long memory, at 18:37 local time.

Wu Jianmin served as the foreign ministry’s spokesman from 1991 to 1994.

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Update / Related

» PRC steps up Psychological Warfare targeted at Taiwan, Taipei Times, August 26, 2011

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5 Responses to “Impatience with Diplomacy: Ma opposes, Wu, too”

  1. Really, the development of the aircraft carrier has put them in one sort of bind. Aircraft carriers are, by definition, used for power projection. This makes it really hard to say that the purpose of China’s military modernization is entirely defensive. Ma’s position is untenable.

    Like

  2. Ma’s position is untenable.

    Hehe. I’d say that neither Ma nor the foreign ministry have a position of their own. Maybe the politbureau’s standing commission has a position. But that position as stated by Ma (or quoted by Huanqiu) is inconsistent, which should be worse than untenable, by CCP standards. The inconsistency is that the statement says that China’s military power is there to promote peace, stability and prosperity in the Pacific region and even the world. Even if there were no “aircraft carrier”, this would look like a new phrasing from Beijing – to me, anyway.

    In the end, the term defense policy could be renamed war policy again, and would be more accurate in that case, for being more comprehensive (I think this is true for any country’s military). Do you know a country which would not say that its policies are defensive? Even the invasion of Iraq was “defensive”.

    But the CCP is in a bind in that they have raised expectations, with that big bathing tub from Ukraine.

    Aircraft carriers are the Viagra of the nationalists.

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  3. Arent aircraft carriers a world war 2 platform?

    Like

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