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US urged to focus on long-term interests

By ZHAO HUANXIN in Washington | China Daily Global | Updated: 2020-07-27 07:04
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Productive relationship

"I believe both countries' interests are best served by a productive relationship that allows for healthy competition alongside coordination on shared challenges," Hass, a director for China at the White House National Security Council from 2013 to 2017, said.

The about-face by the Trump administration on relations with China is not the sign of a country that is confident in its foreign policy or in its ability to be economically competitive with China, according to Jon R. Taylor, professor and chair of the Department of Political Science and Geography at the University of Texas, San Antonio.

"It doesn't serve the long-term best interests of the US when American officials frame China as the perpetrator if they dare to respond to any of the challenges by the US," Taylor said.

"It almost suggests that they want a new Cold War to justify their actions and rhetoric," he added.

In recent years, US policy and political rhetoric toward China have been dominated by officials with limited knowledge of developments in that country, noted Ezra F.Vogel, a professor of the Social Sciences Emeritus at Harvard University.

"It is not in the United States' interest to turn the Chinese into enemies," Vogel said in an op-ed on Wednesday. "If we want to encourage them to work with us for our common interests, we need some fundamental rethinking of our policies."

Robert Daly, a veteran China hand, called Pompeo's view of the Chinese people and their hostility toward the government in Beijing "a dangerous illusion", according to a post from The Wilson Center, a Washington-based think tank, on Twitter Friday.

Daly is a former diplomat who translated for Nixon's former national security adviser and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger.

"China is not a land of innocent captives and evil master trolls. US-China relations are not a children's story," Daly, now director of the Kissinger Institute on China and the US at The Wilson Center, was quoted as saying in an emailed statement to US News & World Report.

"In China, the United States faces something far more formidable than Secretary Pompeo suggests: China is a vast, complex, wealthy, ambitious, aggrieved nation. Americans should face this challenge squarely and stop blinding themselves with morally flattering fables," he said.

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