• Sun
  • Dec 28, 2014
  • Updated: 12:20pm

US defence chief Chuck Hagel challenged on issues including Japan and Taiwan

US defence chief warned about arms sales to Taipei and his call for Beijing to 'respect neighbours'

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 08 April, 2014, 2:15pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 09 April, 2014, 5:35pm

The Chinese and US defence chiefs exchanged fire on a range of thorny regional and global security issues at their first official meeting in Beijing yesterday.

Defence minister Chang Wanquan said his discussion with his visiting US counterpart Chuck Hagel was "candid" and "constructive".

He said their talks covered topics including regional territorial disputes and cybersecurity.

Watch: US defence chief holds talks with Chinese counterpart

Chang also urged Washington to stop a bill that reaffirms America's commitment to Taiwan and calls for continued arms sales to the island.

He said Beijing was "strongly dissatisfied" with the move and firmly opposed it.

Hagel arrived on Monday and was given a rare tour of China's first aircraft carrier the Liaoning in Qingdao harbour.

But that welcoming gesture made way for a more hardline approach from Chang, who warned Washington to respect Beijing's core interests as the US shifts its strategic focus to the Asia-Pacific region.

"The China-US relationship is not comparable to US-Russia ties in the cold war," Chang said at a joint press conference. "China's development cannot be contained by anyone."

On the territorial dispute with Japan over the Diaoyu Islands in the East China Sea, Chang warned that China's armed forces were "ready to assemble at the first call" and were "capable of winning". He warned the US to "stay vigilant" over Japan.

Hagel told Chang at the press conference that Washington had a treaty obligation to protect Japan in any dispute with China, and denounced Beijing's declaration of an air defence zone over the East China Sea in November.

He said: "Every nation has a right to establish an air defence zone, but not a right to do it unilaterally with no collaboration, no consultation.

Every nation has a right to establish an air defence zone, but not a right to do it unilaterally

"That adds to tensions, misunderstandings, and could eventually add to, and eventually get to, dangerous conflict."

Hagel also called on Beijing to be more transparent about its cyber capabilities. But Chang said China was already being transparent and co-operative.

In another open confrontation, a deputy chairman of the powerful Central Military Commission, Fan Changlong, told Hagel that Beijing was not happy with his remarks in Japan last week when he urged Beijing to respect its neighbours.

"I can tell you, frankly, your remarks made at the Asean defence ministers meeting and to the Japanese politicians were tough and with a clear attitude.

"The Chinese people, including myself, are dissatisfied with such remarks," Fan was quoted as saying by Xinhua at the opening of talks with Hagel.

In a positive gesture, both sides promised to step up a regular dialogue to minimise the risk of misunderstandings. Ni Lexiong , a Shanghai-based navy expert, said: "Both sides are not shying away from problems.

"The process may be tough, but it is better than pretending there is no problem."

The risk of conflict between China and the US was heightened in December when an American guided missile cruiser, the USS Cowpens, took evasive action to avoid colliding with a Chinese landing vessel in the South China Sea during exercises involving the Liaoning.

Zhu Feng , a security specialist at Peking University, said: "The two nations need to have mechanisms for deciding what action should be taken when their ships or aircrafts are getting close."

Additional reporting by Associated Press


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Meetings like this are good when candid even if both sides don't see eye to eye. It clearly shows pot meeting kettle. Case in point.
"Every nation has a right to establish an air defence zone, but not a right to do it unilaterally with no collaboration, no consultation."
I don't believe Japan's ADIZ was ever in collaboration or consultation with its neighbors. When it enlarged its ADIZ in 2010, it did not consult with Taiwan and overlaps with a Taiwanese controlled commercial flight corridor that is assigned by the international body ICAO.
"The risk of conflict between China and the US was heightened in December when an American guided missile cruiser, the USS Cowpens, took evasive action to avoid colliding with a Chinese landing vessel in the South China Sea during exercises involving the Liaoning."
Yes but if the reporting was more objective, it would report the Cowpens was essentially spying on the Liaoning. Standoffs like this were common between the US and the Soviets and even resulted in collisions. So if the US wants to initiate such games of chicken on the seas, it's not entirely China stirring the pot. It's mutual.
To put it simply and clearly, America today is acting like a hypocrite, saying one thing and doing another, the very opposite. On the European theater, it is the non-interference and respect to national sovereignty and territorial integrity, and yet in East Asia theater, it is against its very promise of respecting the one China policy, by interfering in China's internal affairs with Taiwan. The double standards is the most horrific form of diplomacy the US can display.
The double standard is getting even worse in Cyber Hacking and Cyber espionage...
The question is how America can get to this stage of becoming such a self contradicting entity?
The surrender instrument defines Japan’s legal place,
the ground of its national existence in East Asia
where the practical meaning of status quo
can’t be divorced from the realities of WW2
that neutered Japan’s military ambition
Japanese Surrender Instrument
“the Emperor, the Japanese Government, and their successors undertake to carry out
the provisions of the Potsdam Declaration in good faith”
Potsdam Declaration
5. Following are our terms. We will not deviate from them. There are no alternatives. We shall brook no delay.
8. The terms of the Cairo Declaration shall be carried out and Japanese sovereignty shall be limited to the islands of Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu, Shikoku and such minor islands as we determine.
11. Japan shall be permitted to maintain such industries as will sustain her economy …, but not those which would enable her to re-arm for war. To this end, access to, as distinguished from control of, raw materials shall be permitted.
Cairo Declaration
Japan shall be stripped of all the islands in the Pacific which she has seized or occupied since the beginning of the first World War in 1914, and that all the territories Japan has stolen form the Chinese, such as Manchuria, Formosa, and the Pescadores, shall be restored to the Republic of China.
Japan will also be expelled from all other territories which she has taken by violence and greed.
ed_kwok, I have heard this argument many times, about why the Chinese has the American to thank. May be or may be not...
The US fought Japan in WW2 for its own interests, not for China's interests. This is amply clear from the American inaction, of not declaring war, until "attacked" by Japan at Pearl Habor. China tied down a million Japanese troop in the Chinese mainland, and that was significant in bringing down American casualty in the Pacific war. How many? No body know. China has sacrificed 35 million military and civilian casualty to fight the Japanese, and any presupposed Japanese victory or "conquest" of the whole of China would not be an easy scenario, because China was simply "too big" to conquer. If we take the case of the Vietnam war, for example, we saw the US "defeated' by a far more inferior army of North Vietnam.
In the long history of China, we have seen it invaded many times by many other nationalities and races, yet China stands as a unified entity today. Some say China has great power of assimilating other nationalities, making Chinese the main language despite the invasions. There might be some truth in that theory. this is why I don't agree with your view.
Of course, the Chinese must not forget that they owe the American something, and should be willing to listen to voices of justice, of fairness, and of peace.
Clearly America is on the wrong side of history. They were wrong then and they are wrong now.
Siding with japan is probably the most lopsided mistake when it comes to azid or diaoyu island or ww2 historical views.
Just because abe n their loonies luv to kiss ur **** and do as u please does not mean they are right.
Look into the reasons and facts. Simply by loudly declaring the mutual defence treaty repeatedly is old news and every tom **** n Harry knows u r lying thru ur teeth especially when u pointedly said America is neutral or take no position whatsoever.
With greater power requires greater vision and fairness and u have display none.
I do not agree personally with china claims over the entire south china seas but instead of trying to meditate and hope to resolve the issues, your holy presence is causing more problems.
Absolutely Aquino does not have the galls to confront china unless with ur holy blessing.
At every step u make and every step u take , there will be chaos.
Agree, this is what I call America's "double standard" diplomacy.
ed_kwok, you seemed to have forgotten the fact that the US fought Japan during WW2 not because of Japan's invasion of China and all its neighbours but that they bombed Pearl Harbour. Please get the facts straight.
Fundamentally US support for Japan cannot be without limitations. Despite the nonsense said by Hagel, the US knows only too well that Japan cannot be trusted especially when you have a devil worshipping revisionist irresponsible Japanese government. Japan as an American dog will be allowed to bark when it serves US interests to destabilise China, but if the dog becomes psychopathic and dangerous it runs the risk of being put down by the master. The US knows only too well that Japanese aggression towards her neighbours today will one day extend to the US itself. As long as the dog is docile towards the US and kept on a strong leash, the US will give Japan some leeway and even encouragement to be a spoiler. But when the Japanese dog becomes too aggressive, it will be put down. This is something that even the psychopath Abe is very clear about. Be an American slave but don't go too far.
Good point. Iran should have a few nuclear weapons too. Didn't the US and UK overthrow the duly elected Mohammed Mossadegh in 1953 and install Pahlavi as their puppet? Didn't Saddam Hussein get all the materiel he needed from the US to build nerve gas weapons and use them to kill almost 1 million Iranians in an 8-year war? Didn't the US and Israel plant the Stuxnet malware into Iran's uranium enrichment facilities, thus legitimizing a new form of warfare and global surveillance of every human being under the sun?
With its zero economic growth rate and deflation, I welcome Japanese rearmament. It's the best way for Abe to bankrupt his nation and to revive the war crimes of his forefathers.
Chuck Hagel says "Every nation has a right to establish an air defence zone, but not a right to do it unilaterally". When Japan established one it did so unilaterally. When the US established one it also did so unilaterally. So logically when China established one, it also did so unilaterally. China and Russia although not allies have the same rights as the US. That includes the right to tell Japan to respect international law and not to occupy the Diaoyu Islands which is Chinese territory. Japanese continued occupation of the Diaoyu Islands is a violation of the terms of Japan's unconditional surrender in 1945. That makes Japan an international outlaw. The US should not be supporting Japan when Japan is violating international law.



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