China Voice: China, Japan nothing like Britain-Germany rivalry
                 English.news.cn | 2014-01-24 13:49:38 | Editor: Luan

by Xinhua writer Fu Shuangqi

BEIJING, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- There seems to be a political and economic rivalry between emerging China and threatened Japan, from the eyes of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

His latest interpretation of China-Japan relations is that it is a "similar situation" to Britain and Germany before 1914. Abe made the comment on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

The problem is, it is 2014, not 1914. A century has passed with two devastating world wars and a cold war.

Human beings have shed enough blood that a politician today should not be forgiven for still thinking about international relations in a century-old way.

China never steps in the shoes of either Britain or Germany a century ago because it perceives the world in a different way. It believes developing and developed countries can work together to create bigger benefits instead of fighting for their share.

Surely countries have to negotiate, argue and even quarrel but China always holds that they should never resort to war as a solution.

In fact many countries today think of the world in a different way from a century ago. Globalization interweaves nations in an unprecedented way that every rational country should take advantage of it rather than try to break it.

It is a pity that the man who leads Japan does not think this way.

China was a victim of two world wars while Japan started one. Anyone who believes Abe's perspective should always keep this in mind.

China was almost destroyed by World War II, a war that was forced on it. Its people understand the loss of beloved ones to the war no less than any other nation.

Justice was served when Japan surrendered in 1945 and its political and military leaders stood trial for war crimes at the Tokyo War Crimes Tribunal a year later.

It was Japan's right-wing politicians who enshrined the 14 Class-A war criminals, convicted by the Tokyo trials, at the Yasukuni shrine. Abe paid homage to them last month.

Talking about breaking the status quo and threatening regional peace, it is Japan that wants to change the world order post WWII while China works to safeguard it.

A country, which was a violent invader but defeated, never truly shows remorse and always regards its failure in the war as a national humiliation. When its neighbors thrive, it is upset and feels threatened.

If we thought the same way as Prime Minister Abe, we would have found similarities between today's Japan and Germany after WWI.

But we would rather not.

As Qu Xing, president of China Institute of International Studies, told Xinhua, China would like Japan to open its eyes and look into the 21st century.

Related:

Abe's speech at Davos draws criticism

BEIJING, Jan. 24 (Xinhuanet) -- Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is under fire again after comparing his country’s tense relations with China, with those of Germany and Britain before World War One. Abe’s historical reference has drawn criticism from both China and South Korea.

Speaking on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said China and Japan were in a "similar situation" to Britain and Germany before 1914, but conflict erupted between the two countries despite strong economic ties. He said both China and Japan should take lessons from that.  Full story

Abe still self-contradictory 

BEIJING, Jan. 24 (Xinhuanet) -- One moment, he sounded perfectly sane, alerting the world to the dangerous tensions that could potentially tear East Asia apart.

The next, he appeared the very opposite, convincing a global audience there is no way to undo the knot he has tied. Or at least he is not in the mood to undo it.  Full story

China dismisses Abe's call for talks

BEIJING, Jan. 23 (Xinhua) -- China on Thursday dismissed Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's call for talks with Chinese leaders, arguing that it is insincere.

"We have repeatedly stated our position on this. The Japanese leader should not dream of having empty talks while refusing to acknowledge his mistakes and continuing to make negative remarks on China," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang told a regular press briefing.  Full story

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