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ASIAdocument.write(“” + m[today.getMonth()+1]+ ” “+ today.getDate()+”, ” + theYear + ” “);HOMECHINAWORLDBUSINESSLIFESTYLECULTURETRAVELSPORTSOPINIONREGIONALFORUMNEWSPAPERChina Daily PDFChina Daily E-paperChina Daily Global PDFChina Daily Global E-paperWorld / Reporters JournalAsia PacificUS & CanadaLatin AmericaEuropeAfricaMiddle EastHigh TableReporters JournalMilitaries reduce misunderstandingsByChen Weihua(China Daily USA)Updated: 2014-05-20 11:21Comments Print Mail Large Medium SmallNews media headlines can always be misleading. Take the recent ones suggesting that Fang Fenghui, chief of the General Staff of Chinas Peoples Liberation Army, and Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, “debated heatedly” for an hour at a joint press conference at Pentagon last Thursday.The two men did disagree on a few things – such as what constitutes the status quo in the East and South China seas and whether the US rebalance to Asia strategy has emboldened or been taken advantage of by some countries in the region to take a more confrontational stance in maritime territorial disputes with China.But overall the press conference can be described as relatively smooth, and not a “heated” debate, nor did Dempsey get hugely upset as some suggested.The welcoming ceremony at the Pentagon on Thursday morning was telling. General Fang, who was paying a five-day visit to the US at the invitation of Dempsey, received a 19-gun salute, the highest honor for anyone who is not a nations president. Besides, the honor guard of more than 250 from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard at the ceremony surprised many Pentagon officials. Some said they had not seen such a grand welcome ceremony for about two years.Despite some inherited Cold War legacy, the two militaries are trying hard to understand each other better and avoid misunderstanding and miscalculation.One way of doing that is to strengthen the high-level visits between the militaries as agreed upon by Chinese President Xi Jinping and President Barack Obama at Sunnylands, California, last June.US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel returned from a visit to China in April. It is one of the many senior level visits between the two militaries in the past two years.In July, Jonathan Greenert, chief of Naval Operations, will pay a return visit to China following the visit to the US last September by his Chinese counterpart, Wu Shengli, commander-in-chief of PLA Navy.Greenert actually was in Chinas coastal city of Qingdao briefly in late April attending the 14th Western Pacific Naval Symposium, a forum that allows for the exchange of ideas between heads of navies and facilitates partnerships among the 21-nation-state members.Speaking at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington on Monday, Greenert applauded the Code of Unplanned Encounters agreed upon by the navies at the Qingdao meeting.He described his upcoming visit to China as part of a continued deliberate drumbeat of working together and building a constructive relationship between the two militaries.”Talking is good, exercise is better,” he said.China will be attending the Rim of the Pacific, or RIMPAC, naval exercises set for June 26 and August 1.China will be participating in the exercise for the first time since it was launched in 1971. The PLA Navy plans to send four ships – a destroyer, a frigate, an oiler and a hospital ship – to the worlds largest naval war game, which will involve 23 nations, 47 surface ships, six submarines and more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 troops.Although the US military is still limited by what kind of exercises it can conduct with China under the National Defense Authorization Act by the US Congress, Greenert described the exercises conducted by China and the US in RIMPAC as “reasonably comprehensive” and said he feels good about “where we are heading in RIMPAC”.Greenert and Wu have agreed on the so-called eight initiatives to help improve operations and understanding between the two navies, ranging from the exchanges of midshipman and midgrade officers to medical officers from Chinas hospital ship Peace Ark to US hospital ship Mercy.Greenert described the Chinese navy as an active, capable and professional blue water navy. He praised the PLA Navy for its capacity in humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, as evidenced in the search for the missing Malaysian Airlines Flight 370.While voicing that the US has to be responsible and reliable to its security treaties, he said, “We dont want war, we dont want combat. Nobody does.”Privately, Chinese military officials also described the joint exercises between the two militaries as “cordial” and nothing like what sensational news headlines suggest.However, the overemphasis on the military component in its rebalance to Asia strategy has complicated the situation. While the US has said repeatedly that the strategy is not to contain China, such words have not convinced most Chinese and many in the region and even some in the US.The US is finding it difficult to keep a balance between pleasing its treaty allies while trying to build a constructive relationship with China, one that has been described as the most sequential bilateral relationship in the 21st century.Contact the writer at chenweihua@chinadailyusa.com8.03KPhotoUNs top environmental honors go to three in ChinaGerman trains collide near Duesseldorf, several people injuredLiu heralds UK partnership in education and researchEfforts needed for sustainable projects1st Panda cub born in France named Yuan MengFree trade studies agreed on as Li meets with Canadian PM TrudeauChina-JapanChina-USChina-AfricaChina-EuropeLi tells Japanese business leaders its time for bilateral cooperationChina-Japan meet seeks cooperationGroup of lawmakers visit notorious Yasukuni Shrine in JapanJapan can offer experience, expat saysChina-Japan ties seen at dialogue as benefit to regionChina, Japan officials exchange views on security issues at 15th dialogueChinese music finds new foothold in United StatesC919 flies toward air worthinessPolitical leaders: Sino-US relations to growChina vows steps after US launches probe into aluminum tradeGates is added to top-tier Chinese academyYao helps AB InBev fight alcohol abuseAction urged over pollutionUNs top environmental honors go to three in ChinaChina unveils Model Confucius Institute edifice in Ghana universityChina vows to deepen bilateral ties with new Zimbabwe govtChinese, African parties meet to share wisdom on modernization2nd China-Africa Investment Forum begins in MoroccoLiu heralds UK partnership in education and researchPeak performance by Chinese nurse on Scotlands mountains9-month festival of Chinese art, heritage to be staged in Liverpool, UK, next yearChina eyes closer economic, trade cooperation with BelarusPremier calls to enhance trade liberalization and facilitation in SCOPremier: China to advance production capacity with UzbekistanAsia PacificUS & CanadaEuropeAfricaMiddle EastChinese tourists go to South KoreaChina-Japan meet seeks cooperationUN envoys trip to DPRK praised by BeijingBelt and Road a great opportunity: Uzbek officialKwaussie wins Australias word of the yearJapan can offer experience, expat saysTrudeau visits Sina WeiboChina, Canada agree to issue joint statement on climate changeDemocrats stand united against GOP tax billUS quits talks on global migration pactTensions triggered over possible moveSino-Canadian bilateral trade ties to deepen furtherMay gets little gasp as EU extends deadline for sufficient progress in Brexit talksRussia banned from Pyeongchang Winter OlympicsGerman trains collide near Duesseldorf, several people injuredLiu heralds UK partnership in education and researchBoth first ladies name panda cub Yuan MengLiu Yandong heralds bilateral cooperation in education and researchEthiopian FM urges strengthened Ethiopia-China tiesUNs top environmental honors go to three in ChinaAction urged over pollutionBelt and Road Initiative to help countries achieve UN goals: officialChina unveils Model Confucius Institute edifice in Ghana universityMorocco king holds historic talks with South African president in AbidjanYemens ex-president Saleh, relatives killed by HouthisTrump recognition of Jerusalem as Israeli capital would raise regional tensionsYemen rattled by raids as clashes spreadSquash a perfect match for girl refugees in JordanSyrian talks in Geneva to continue to Dec 15: UN envoyAll parties in Syria urged to join talksMost PopularHot TopicsFerry disasterChina and JapanBaby princeUkraine crisisMalaysian flightUS envoysDPRKIranHigh TableNatural wonderlandGreece ready for EU leadershipTrust, friendship and traditionReporters JournalA futile distraction from the United States of SecretsBillionaires battle: whos the bigger auto giant?In Tiger Mother controversy, can both sides be right?Militaries reduce misunderstandingsSpecialTerritorial disputes in the South China SeaPremier Li visits African countriesRoyals who have visited China…| About China Daily | Advertise on Site | Contact Us | Job Offer |Copyright 1995 -. 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