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Wang Yi: The US should avoid picking another misguided fight with the wrong country

2019/09/25

On September 24 local time, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi attended and delivered a keynote speech at a dinner co-hosted by the National Committee on US-China Relations, US-China Business Council, US Chamber of Commerce and Council on Foreign Relations in New York.

Wang noted that in the early years of the People's Republic of China, the United States sought an all-out containment of China. The two countries even fought a war on the Korean Peninsula, which was followed by 22 years of confrontation. General Omar Bradley, then Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, called what happened in Korea "the wrong war, at the wrong place, at the wrong time, and with the wrong enemy". It wasn't until 1970s that things began to change. Dr. Kissinger's secret visit to China and the meetings between President Richard Nixon and Chairman Mao Zedong and Premier Zhou Enlai reopened the door of contact, and set us on a path toward peaceful co-existence and joint pursuit of prosperity. The ups and downs in our relations provide ample evidence that confrontation and conflict is not in the fundamental interests of either China or the United States. Dialogue and cooperation is the only way to go. Some Americans claim that the US decades-long engagement policy has failed in its original purpose of changing China, and that it is time to revert to the containment policy. Such an idea of molding others according to one's own wish is wrong from the very starting point, and cannot possibly work. Seventy years on, it is important for the United States to avoid picking another misguided fight with the wrong country.

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