China, U.S. officials push forward military relations

13:19, October 30, 2009      

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Since Obama came to power, Sino-U.S. military relations have become a veritable "short board." With the shadow of the arms sale to Taiwan by the previous U.S. administration still lingering, a new friction was produced because an American warship was intercepted in water under Chinese jurisdiction. This was in sharp contrast to the deepening cooperation in other areas between China and U.S.

Regarding this, both Chinese and American military officials are anxious. Xiong Guangkai, the former vice-chief staff of People's Liberation Army (PLA), lead a military delegation composing some high ranking retired generals to visit Washington before Vice Chairman Xu Caihou arrived. He said, “We cannot let the military relations lag behind the two countries relations in other areas. In front of the Lincoln memorial hall, for a photo Xiong Guangkai hugged Owens, the vice-president of American joined chief of staff conference, giving people a deep impression that the two countries’ retired generals are trying to help the two countries military communication as much as they can.

If you are observant enough, you may have found that the basic keynote of the two countries’ military relations had already been set down when President Hu Jintao and President Obama met in London in April 2009. Since then, the two countries’ defense departments and armies have taken a series of measures to push forward the restoration of their relationship step by step. For example, the two countries’ Department of Defense held a defense consultation in Beijing; the United States Navy minister, General Rough Head and chief of staff for the land army, General Casey successively visited China; and the two armies also held dialogue on the problem of marine military security between the two armies.

The stable political relationship was a ‘tonic’ for two countries military relations. Even Xu Caihou’s visit to U.S. had also been written into the "United News Release" of the Strategic and economic dialogue between China and U.S. in July. Yuan Pengyan, the manager of the American center of China’s modern international relations research institution, said “If military relations don’t realize a breakthrough, the two countries’ relations will stagnate back and forth at a low level, which is also very difficult to push forward.

President Obama will make his first visit to China in November. According to the "Washington Post", the Sino-U.S. military relations will be an important agenda during Obama’s visit. So the first U.S. visit by the leader of the Chinese Central Military Committee will definitely influence Obama’s China visit, Niu Xinchun said.

By People's Daily Online
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