Chinese Minister of National Defense Chang Wanquan began his four-day visit to the United States on August 16. During his visit, Chang held talks with his U.S. counterpart Chuck Hagel and National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice. He also visited the U.S. Pacific Command and the U.S. Northern Command.
This is Chang's first U.S. visit since he took office as Chinese Minister of National Defense, and it will be of great significance in promoting healthy and stable development of Sino-US military ties.
First of all, this visit will encourage the development of healthy and stable Sino-US military relations. In recent years, the two sides have engaged in frequent high-level visits. This year, the chairman of Joint Chief of Staff Dempsey visited China and military leaders of both parties have had positive exchanges at the Shangri-La Dialogue and other multilateral talks. China took part in the fifth round of Sino-US strategic and economic dialogue, strategic security dialogue and the first network working group meetings. Furthermore, both sides achieved worthwhile cooperation in the ASEAN Defense Ministers' Meeting-Plus Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief and Military Medicine Exercise in Brunei in June.
Now, for the first time, China has been invited by the US to participate in the "Pacific Rim Exercises", the world's largest international naval exercise, scheduled for next year.
Secondly, this visit will explore the construction of a new military relationship adapted to the new model of major country relationship, and function as a means to develop the important consensus reached by Chinese President Xi and U.S. President Obama in June into the policies and activities of both defense departments and armed forces.
During the special meeting at Annenberg estate in June this year, Chinese President Xi Jinping proposed building a new model of major country relationship and military ties. President Xi summed up the principles as: "no conflict, no confrontation, mutual respect, cooperation, and win-win". Applying these principles would mean improving dialogue and raising mutual trust to a new level, creating a new spirit of cooperation and mutual benefit, establishing a new mode of interaction, and exploring new ways to manage and control differences. Building suitable military relations is fundamental to resolving issues including how the two parties treat each other and how the two parties get along with each other. Success in this endeavor will help to promote strategic mutual trust, to resolve strategic risks, and to enhance the ability of both militaries to initiate a joint response to shared security threats.
Read the Chinese version: 中国防长访美透露什么信号（望海楼）
Source: People's Daily Overseas Edition; Author: Zhao Xiaozhuo