Nov 30, 2010

Beijing flubs art of ambiguity in Nobel affair

HONG KONG — The value of ambiguity in international diplomacy has long been recognized and widely practiced by such proponents as Henry Kissinger and by Chinese leaders. In 1979, for example, the United States said it “recognizes the government of the People’s Republic of ...

Oct 29, 2010

Joint projects would build Japan-China trust

HONG KONG — While the immediate crisis over Japan’s seizure last month of a Chinese fishing vessel that rammed two Japanese coast guard patrol boats has ended with the release of the captain, the repercussions will long be felt. For one thing, distrust of ...

Oct 16, 2010

Beijing's reaction justifies Nobel Committee's choice

In China’s upside-down world where black is white, the great honor of the Nobel Peace Prize being given to Liu Xiaobo, a writer, intellectual and human rights activist, has been denounced by the government as a “desecration” of the award because it was given ...

Sep 30, 2010

Ebb and flow of hedging in Southeast Asia

HONG KONG — Last week, when the China-Japan dispute over the detention of the captain of a Chinese fishing trawler was hanging fire, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden said American efforts to improve relations with China must “go through Tokyo” because Japan was vital ...

Sep 5, 2010

The yin and yang of human rights in China

HONG KONG — The only lady vice minister in China’s Foreign Ministry is Fu Ying, a well-coiffed, mild-mannered 57-year-old, an ethnic Mongol who speaks flawless English, who has served as ambassador to the Philippines, Australia and Britain, and who is known for her media ...

Aug 19, 2010

Mixed views in rising China

While voices in China continue to be raised against American naval exercises near the China coast and asserting Beijing’s increased influence in global affairs, other voices are now being heard questioning the wisdom of China’s increasing assertiveness. Maj. Gen. Luo Yuan, in a commentary ...

Jul 29, 2010

A clash of interests in Asia

The show of force mounted this week off the Korean Peninsula by the United States and South Korea was the biggest in decades and was intended to warn North Korea not to take aggressive action against the South. China, however, objected to the military ...

Jul 15, 2010

Creative diplomacy papers over the Cheonan incident

The dispute over the sinking of a South Korean naval vessel in March has been papered over with a presidential statement unanimously approved by the 15-member United Nations Security Council. As a result, we have the bizarre situation where the statement was applauded by ...

Jun 17, 2010

U.S. military has Chinese seeing red

Although China voted with the United States and other countries to impose another round of sanctions against Iran in the United Nations Security Council, there is still little political trust between the two countries, especially between their militaries. This was evident when U.S. Secretary ...

Jun 3, 2010

North Korea: the region's 'uniter'

Ever since international investigators concluded that the South Korean naval ship Cheonan, which sank in March with the loss of 46 lives, was struck by a North Korean torpedo, China has been under growing pressure to condemn its close friend and ally in the ...