Friday, June 22, 2007

By Francis C. W. Fung, PH.D.

The following important 50Th anniversary celebration of Reuter and Xinhua cooperation is drastically under reported by U.S. media. Perhaps the corporate dominated U.S. media finds that harmony diplomacy news does not fit its agenda nor has the right entertainment and sensational value. This omission of significant East and West media harmony exchange is a great insult to the intelligence of the American public.

World Harmony Organization(WHO) deems it important to cover outstanding examples of harmony diplomacy in work. This is the value we place on world harmony renaissance and world harmony diplomacy watch. When two of the largest East and West news agencies meet to renew friendship, mutual respect and trust it will have profound effect on even handed world news reporting. World understanding and harmony between East and West will surely be enhanced by this festival celebration.

Xinhua News Agency and Reuters on Thursday,June 21,2007 held celebrations in the Great Hall of the People to mark five decades of cooperation. Xinhua President Tian Congming and Reuters Chief Executive Officer Tom Glocer unveiled a photo exhibition, comprising about 120 classic cultural and diplomatic exchange photographs, taken by correspondents from Xinhua and Reuters. The exhibition is a fascinating, historical record of a range of political, economic, scientific, technological, cultural, educational and sporting events over the years. The following are excerpts from Xinhua Net with ith opinion and concluding remarks from World Harmony Organization.

"Over the past 50 years, Xinhua and Reuters have exchanged visits and staff at many levels and have signed a series of cooperation agreements," Tian said to the gathering. Reuters was the first Western news agency to forge a cooperation with Xinhua. In May 1957, the two news agencies signed a deal on news story exchange. "I am delighted to see how healthy the cooperation between our two organizations is," Tian said, citing a recent joint training class for Olympics reporters in Beijing. Tian said Xinhua-Reuters cooperation can blossom as long as the two sides abide by the principles of "mutual respect, close consultation, a long-term perspective, mutual trust and mutual benefit."

"Over the last fifty years we have shown that an open and constructive relationship can produce great achievements," Glocer said in his address. Quoting the Chinese proverb "a book tightly shut is only a block of paper", Glocer said the Reuters-Xinhua relationship is an open book. "Today we move to the next of many chapters." Among the approximately 100 representatives at the celebrations were two pioneers of Xinhua-Reuters ties --- Peng Di, the first Xinhua correspondent in London, and 80-year-old David Chipp, the first Reuters correspondent in Beijing.

Founded in 1931, Xinhua News Agency is the most authoritative news agency in China and an international provider of multimedia news and information services. Based in Beijing, Xinhua runs 33 domestic bureaus and 102 overseas bureaus. Xinhua provides round-the-clock news and information services in nearly 200 countries and regions in eight languages: Chinese, English, French, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Portuguese and Japanese.

Senior official of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Li Changchun on Thursday called on Reuters to report China as it is. "Reuters should be a bridge in helping the world obtain a better understanding of China and report China as it is," Li said in a meeting with a Reuters delegation headed by Reuters chairman Niall Fitz Gerald. Li, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, also hailed the good partnership between Xinhua News Agency and Reuters over the past fifty years.

Li said exchanges and cooperation among news organizations of different countries have become increasingly important as the world has entered an era of information and globalization. Fitz Gerald hailed China's rapid development in economic and social sectors. He said Reuters would like to carry out a more effective partnership with Xinhua.

As important as Xinhua News as a leader of world media, its professional and even handed reporting of world news, Xinhua is still relatively unknown in the U.S. Those who know, look at Xinhua with jaundiced eyes suffering from the ill effects of 50 years of cold war infection. They are so colored by the U.S. media some readers' vision to this day, unfairly shuns Xinhua news. WHO feels extreme injustice that this unfair misjudgment must not be left untreated.

I follow all important world news services in my writing on the Internet, Xinhua's reporting stands out with the greatest integrity exceeding many Western news media. Most of all Xinhua has progressed with the times with a modern world outlook, whereas there are other medias remain short sighted and waddling in the sting pool of bygone days and engaged in confrontational, name calling, scavenging and mud slinging practices.

One of the excuses for discounting Xinhua news is that it is affiliated with Chinese Government. This casual judgment without due diligence is even carried by a large cross section of Chinese Americans. Yet this group of so called intellectuals highly regarded the reporting of BBC and Christian Science Monitor in international news. They seem to be impervious to the fact that one is government affiliated the other is a religion supported media. Through out my school days in America I enjoyed reading international news carried by Christian Science Monitor.

In my over 50 years of foreign affairs study and research I encountered countless mindless obvious propaganda and finger pointing reporting of China by the Western press of highest repute. Many Western reporters when it comes to the unfamiliar East are inclined to be Euro-centric and biased. To those professional journalists still engage in digging dirt today, I advice them please read Xinhua News for a balanced outlook.

To quote an English sayings "Do not judge a book by its cover but by its contents" and "Judge a tree's merits by the fruits it bears." I for one practice "Do not judge heros by their humble background but by their deeds." Simply put, as independent thinkers we must read and investigate before we mete out casual judgment. These days in international news Xinhua is a must read media to be in touch with the real world with a balanced view.

Having vented my indignation let me get down to the business how I seriously think WHO can help. From WHO's up to date investigation as documented in our two recent papers on harmony diplomacy, America is ready and yearning for an end of the long siege of confrontational madness. The papers are entitled "Harmony Diplomacy Essential for World Development" and " Harmony Diplomacy in Work" are published by Xinhua Net.

One of the significant reasons for the lack of awarenesss of Xinhua by the U.S. public, is the ill effect of ethnocentric ommission of significant East and West exchange events as indicated here. This points out the importance of advocating harmony diplomacy. World Harmony organization has the responsibilty and duty bound to continue our world harmony renaissnce and harmony diplomacy watch.

The Motto for harmony diplomacy for the 21st Century is rightly so "Mutual respect, mutual trust and mutual development. Carry a strategic and long vision." The old American wisdom that is being revived by some "Speak softly and carry a big stick" is so 19th century. It has no place in today's necessary pursue of harmony diplomacy to resolve the extreme disparities of today's conflicting world.

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