SIGNS OF WORLD HARMONY DIPLOMACY ON THE RISE
BY FRANCIS C. W. FUNG, PH.D.
The U.S. media, which accustomed to confrontational cold war diplomacy, has been slow to recognize the signs of world harmony diplomacy on the rise. The profit-driven, corporate and military complex dominated American media looks sluggish when faced with the tide of win-win mutual development between nations. This necessitates the development of world harmony diplomacy as presented in my last article "Harmony Diplomacy Essential for World Development" ( Xinhua Net World Opinion, May 22, 2007). For related articles on harmony diplomacy and world harmony renaissance please visit www.worldharmonyforum.blogspot.com
Amazingly enough, America, embroiled for over fifty years in the cold war, made the decision to allow, at present, more than 3500 of its citizens to die in a war in Iraq, before realizing that humility rather than arrogance can create strong relationships and build the bridges that will one day lead to harmonious relations. The simple act of the U.S. becoming more understanding and accepting of other cultures will unquestionably influence many other nations to do the same. Specifically included among those that may change is Japan in its relationship with China. It remains to be seen if the U.S. media will finally learn world harmony diplomacy and move forward to the 21st century.
Besides the overbearing American foreign policy, the condescending attitude in the media for the past 50 years, is also to blame for the mistrust created between the States and other nations that are now hostile to our foreign policy. A change of heart in American media will certainly help to create a better world understanding for the U.S. government to continue practicing world harmony diplomacy. The following are four major current event stories showing signs of harmony diplomacy on the rise that are under reported by the U.S. media.
(II) SIGNAL OF US-CHINA HARMONY DIPLOMACY
A news event, of major significance, signalling American-Chinese harmony diplomacy was drastically under reported by the US media. On Wednesday May 23, 2007, Chinese and American officials ended a key economic dialogue in Washington in agreement. The meeting was co chaired by Secretary of Treasury, Henry Paulson and China’s Vice Premier Wu Yi. During the two day Second Strategic Economic Dialogue, top economic officials from the two countries, including dozens of cabinet ministers, discussed topics covering areas of service, investment, transparency, energy and environment as well as growth balance and innovation.
As witnessed by the fact sheet jointly issued at the closing, the two sides reached consensus on how to move forward on financial services, civil aviation, energy and environment as well as signing a number of specific agreements. One cannot help but notice that the tone of the fact sheet shows great diplomacy at work. This consensus is surprising because of the perennial trade friction between the two nations, particularly in light of the climate of the China bashing, which resulted from the recent Congressional trade protectionism mentality. One may also wonder if perhaps we are seeing the first signal of US-China harmony diplomacy from the Bush administration.
This change of heart can even be noted in the President’s own words. In contrast to past foibles, George W. Bush made the correct diplomatic choice for US-China relations, as well as for world harmony. At a White House press conference on Thursday, Bush said that the just concluded US-China Strategic Economic Dialogue is “important” and there has been some progress achieved at the dialogue, according to Xinhua news, stating that “this is an important dialogue. And it’s one that I thank the Chinese government for engaging in”. Bush also met with Vice Premier Wu Yi in the White House Oval Office on Thursday, and asked her to pass a message to Chinese President Hu Jintao that he appreciates China’s willingness “to work with strategic dialogues in order to put in place the type of measures that reflect a complex relationship.”
To set the proper tone for the consultation and consensus, the principle negotiators from both sides were careful in their statements. “Thanks for the careful attention and joint efforts from both sides, the second meeting of the strategic dialogue achieved great success,” said Wu, acting as the special envoy of Chinese President Hu Jintao. “The economic and trade relationship between China and the US is one of the most complicated in today’s world,” she said. “The SED provides an excellent platform for both sides to further understanding and trust in terms of strategic issues.” For his part, US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said that US and China both understood that “getting the economic relationship right is vital not only to our people, but to the world economy.”
In their opening statements Henry Paulson also said, very appropriately, “The purpose of this on going dialogue is to have candid discussions and find ways to ease, rather than increase tensions.” Vice Premier Wu added “Equal consultation, cooperation and win-win have become the overall situation and defining nature of China-US relations, both being stakeholders and constructive partners.” “Politicizing economic and trade issues is absolutely unacceptable, since it is of no help but will make the situation more complicated, harm bilateral economic and trade relations or even cause serious negative impact on the progress of overall China-US ties”
“Now and then, the peace of the world and the progress of the world required close cooperation between the two peoples of the US and China” said Henry Kissinger at the opening, referring to the historic visit by the former President Richard Nixon to China in 1972. “The most advanced industrialized country and the country that is growing at the fastest rate have the unique opportunity to set an example for the rest of the world of cooperation and vision.” Henry Kissinger’s observations of 35 years ago may finally come to fruition by way of American-Chinese harmony consensus, and the ensuing World Harmony Renaissance.
The consensus reached through the SED consultation clearly demonstrated the merit of practicing harmony diplomacy. Harmony is fostered by acceptance, respect, equity and humility. This type of no fault, win-win consultation can lead to complementary solutions between any two nations. The SED fact sheet may serve as a model of harmony diplomacy with humility, practiced by two great nations with wisdom.
(III) SIGN OF HARMONY IN THE EASTERN FRONT, SIX PARTY NORTH KOREA DENUCLEARIZATION
Details of the Six nations denuclearizing pact coming out on April 11, 2007 are very encouraging. It clearly shows that the two strong contending sides are giving ground and reached some consensus through long painful discussions and consultations. This is how harmony works through discussions, consultations and consensus. Until the announcement yesterday the accord all seemed but impossible. Not so long ago our President Bush called North Korea part of the "Axis of Evil”. This major world event may not receive the attention it deserves. But from World Harmony Renaissance perspective this may spark a series of events that signal the beginning of harmony at East Asia.
By implementing the Nuclear Disarmament Pact U.S., China, Russia, Japan, South and North will have to help North Korea recover. That means major countries across both sides of the pacific will work together for mutual development. North East Asia development has a lot of potential. North Korea's economic stagnation dated from Korean War some 50 years ago may see a way out. The Accord calls for "Within 30 days: Five separate working groups meet on denuclearizing, normalizing U.S.-North Korea relations, normalizing of North Korea-Japan relations, economy and energy cooperation, and peace and security in Northeast Asia.”
I would have reported this important break through with a lot more enthusiasm than the U.S. press for sure. Be what it may, this proved the importance of harmony diplomacy to give the fair historical perspective and the whole aftermath of the cold war era. Some of you may still remember the cold war confrontation era. As momentous as those years were the left over effect may be solved by the necessity of mutual and harmonious development. The need for mutual development will pave the way for a more harmonious world. Solution for uniting North and South Korea, China and Taiwan will be the promise of mutual development through harmony diplomacy. The unification of West and East Germany and the return of Hong Kong to China, both situations showed that the aftermath of cold war era can easily be forgotten and harmony of feuding brothers can be achieved.
(IV)US-IRAN DIPLOMATIC THAW AFTER 27 YEARS
Following is an excerpt from Xinhua News"TEHRAN, May 29 (Xinhua) -- A senior Iranian official said on Tuesday that his country adopts proactive diplomacy to help restore Iraq's security, the official IRNA news agency reported.Ali Akbar Velayati, advisor to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on political affairs, said that Iran showed goodwill during negotiations with Iraqi and U.S. officials in Baghdad.His remarks came one day after Iranian and U.S. ambassadors met in Baghdad to discuss Iraq's security during the first high-level direct official talks between the arch-foes in 27 years.
Velayati said that Monday's meeting was a token of understanding shown by Iran in helping remove ambiguities and a call for the change of the arrogant literature from certain U.S. officials against Iran.U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker on Monday urged Iran to stop supporting Iraq's militia in the rare but "positive" meeting with his Iranian counterpart in the Iraqi capital.Crocker said at a news conference that his talks with Iranian Ambassador to Iraq Hassan Kazemi Qomi was "positive" and "business-like" and both parties agreed for a stable Iraq.The ice-breaking talks, held in the residency of Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, is the first for the United States and Iran since the diplomatic relations of the two countries have been severed for more than a quarter century.
Analysts said though the high-profile talks achieved no breakthrough as what U.S. and Iranian officials expected, it marked a shift from isolation to engagement in the U.S. policy toward Iran on Iraqi issues."Is this sign of harmony diplomacy in the Middle East?
(V) FROM ICE TO NICE, EXPECT CHINA-JAPAN PROGRESS
The following is excerpt by permission from Xinhua net as an example of how harmony diplomacy can promote mutual development.
BEIJING, May 29 -- China-Japan relations have taken a turn for the better since Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's "ice-breaking" visit to China late last year and Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao's "ice-melting" journey to Japan last month, after going through twists and turns over the last decade or so.
After the rapprochement in 1972, Sino-Japanese relations made impressive advances. Starting from the mid-1990s, however, the bilateral ties began to zigzag through uncertainties. As a result, friction between the two sides became increasingly intensified and ever more frequent. By the end of 2005, contacts between the top leadership of the two countries were completely suspended, a low point for bilateral relations.The worsening of the bilateral ties not only did harm to the two nations' strategic interests but also aroused grave international concern.
In October 2006, the new Japanese prime minister paid an official visit to China. Both sides reached consensus on overcoming political obstacles, pushing forward bilateral relations, restoring connections between Chinese and Japanese leaders, evaluating the development roads taken by the two countries, sticking to the approach of jointly developing the East China Sea resources, and building mutually beneficial relations based on common strategic interests.
During the Chinese premier's Japan visit in April, the two sides gained more common ground on handling the major disputes between the two countries. They reached agreement on the basic principles and content of the mutually beneficial strategic relationship and on concrete steps to achieve the goal.The two sides have reached consensus on promoting connections between their top leadership. Impressive progress has been made in a short time.A certain degree of mutual trust between the top leaders plays a unique role in promoting the bilateral ties. Top Chinese and Japanese leaders have made official visits to each other's countries, in addition to their three meetings on different international occasions.