America's China policies must not be only about what Americans want

20:59, March 19, 2010      

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By John Milligan-Whyte and Dai Min

President Obama has stated: "our nation is made up of immigrants from every part of the world. We have protected our unity and struggled to perfect our union by extending basic rights to all our people. Those rights include the freedom to speak your mind; to worship your God; to choose your leaders. These are not things that we seek to impose-this is who we are. It guides our openness to one another and to the world."

It is self-evident to Chinese that Americans do seek to impose "who we are" on China. It is not self-evident yet to American policymakers and the American people that it does not protect America's economic or military security for American assumptions, policy proposals and military strategies to unintentionally or intentionally seek to harm China or ignore China's sovereignty and right of self-determination.

Due to the economic and national security crises the American political system has produced, America can no longer prudently think about China with traditional American assumptions, policies and strategies. China has not been, cannot be, and will not be a copy of America anytime soon, if ever. American economic and national security policies cannot be successful if America proposes what is good for America and bad for China. No Chinese government could implement such policies. America cannot sustain policies and strategies seeking to contain or engage China that harm or seek to force China copy America.

In 2006 China's Ambassador to the UN, Wang Guangya, who is now China's Deputy Foreign Minister, stated that there is a "missing man" because no American, Chinese nor anyone else had been able to transcend the long recognized perception and communication gaps between the Chinese and American civilizations. The missing man must combine and integrate American and Chinese perspectives in terms that Americans understand and accept. President Obama must be that "missing man." He must also successfully deal with differences among 6.5 billion people in 192 nations and 8 civilizations because weapons and science now exist which make military or economic force weak and moral authority strong.

What 1.5 billion Chinese think and need is "who we are." If Americans cannot or chose not to understand "who the Chinese are," they will never persuade or force that 22% of mankind to change. Americans as 5.6% of mankind must comprehend and implement what is genuinely reciprocally beneficial, (what the Chinese term "win-win,") because only such policy proposals are implementable by China and therefore able to protect America's economic and national security. America's policy proposals will not be implemented if they are a win for America's policymakers' subjectively perceived economic and military needs and lose-lose for China.

"American Exceptionalism" is a familiar term referring to America's achievements in formulating and implementing the majority rule political system, rule of law and definition of human rights pioneered by the American Constitution of 1789. Americans have assumed that all nations should copy American Exceptionalism and have based American foreign policies and defense strategies and other government policies on that demand. Samuel Huntington, in his last book, Who We Are, referred to the ideals of American Exceptionalism as a "Civil Religion."

The new America China Partnership Book Series examines "China's Exceptionalism" which is China's unique achievement in formulating and implementing the five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence in its foreign policies and defense strategies since 1979 that enabled it to create the fastest growing economy in the world directly benefiting China and indirectly benefiting the rest of mankind. China's success in formulating and implementing the Principles of Peaceful Coexistence is "exceptional" because of, what we term the seven "Principles of Conflict" which are ubiquitous in human nature, which are: "Fairness Hypocrisy, Believe and Behave as I do Intolerance, Do as I Say Arrogance, Do as I Say, Not as I Do Immoral Authority, We are Better than You Arrogance, My Country Right or Wrong Bias, and The Passion for Conflict, Power and Harming Others."

The Principles of Conflict manifest themselves in the "Clash of Civilizations," a term popularized by Samuel Huntington. The Principles of Peaceful Coexistence manifest themselves in what we term the "Collaboration of Civilizations" in the current "Age of Species Lethal Weapons and Science," in which the "fundamental foreign policy, defense strategy and scientific research issue in the Age of Species Lethal Weapons and Science," which is preventing human extinction, which is the "Human Extinction Challenge." Our species has no future due to the Principles of Conflict in human nature, which are manifested in the Clash of Civilizations. If mankind can have a future, it is based on the Principles of Peaceful Coexistence enabling the Collaboration of Civilizations.

American Exceptionalism has no realistic chance of being adopted by China, unless America can reciprocate the Principles of Peaceful Coexistence as the basis for its China policies and defense strategies. American style human rights adoption by other civilizations requires a harmonious world, which is a key goal of Chinese Exceptionalism. The Principles of Conflict undermine American Exceptionalism. The Principles of Peaceful Coexistence support the achievement of the goals of American Exceptionalism that Americans desire to see become universal. In essence, Americans acceptance and implementation of China's Exceptionalism is a requirement of the potential universal acceptance of American Exceptionalism by the world's other civilizations, including China's.

America reciprocating China's unilateral implementation of the Principles of Peaceful Coexistence under three generations of its leaders and three Democratic and three Republican presidents' administrations is required to realize America's ideals and ensure America's economic and national security.

John Milligan-Whyte has been called the "new Edgar Snow" and "21st century Kissinger" and is the winner of Social Responsibility Award from the 2010 Summit of China Business Leaders. John Milligan-Whyte and Dai Min are co-hosts of the Collaboration of Civilizations television series, founders of the Center for America-China Partnership, recognized as "the first American think tank to combine and integrate American and Chinese perspectives providing a complete answer for America and China's success in the 21st century," and the authors of the America-China Partnership Book Series that created a "New School of America-China Relations."
E-mail: [email protected]; [email protected]

The article represents the author's views only. It does not represent opinions of People's Daily or People's Daily Online.
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