“If there would have been no OBOR, China still would like to de­velop this project of CPEC”

The Diplomatic Insight - - News -

his month, our team man­aged a ses­sion with Pro­fes­sor Liu De­bin on 70 years’ cel­e­bra­tion of V-Day in China, One Belt, One Road (OBOR) Eco­nomic Cor­ri­dor (CPEC). His views

Liu De­bin

is Pro­fes­sor of His­tory and In­ter­na­tional Stud­ies, Dean of the School of In­ter­na­tional and Pub­lic of As­so­ciate Vice Pres­i­dent, Jilin Univer­sity, China. He is also Vice Pres­i­dent of China Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of In­ter­na­tional Stud­ies (CNAIS).

Diplo­matic Insight:

China held peace pa­rade on V-Day to cel­e­brate 70th an­niver­sary of end of WWII, how do you see the im­pacts of Bei­jing Peace Pa­rade on Re­gional Se­cu­rity and Global Peace?

Prof:

time to re­mind the world and the West in par­tic­u­lar about how long and how against the Ja­panese in­va­sion into China and some places in East Asia. The WWII in East Asia started ear­lier and ended later than any other part of the world, and the ma­jor­ity of the Ja­panese forces were bogged down in Pa­rade ad­vo­cates the strength of China and its emerg­ing role as a re­spon­si­ble power to sup­port global peace and se­cu­rity and in­ter­na­tional de­vel­op­ment. It can be imag­ined in 1920s and 1930s if there would have been pres­ence of strong China, the Ja­panese ag­gres­sion in East Asia could have been pre­vented. In an­other word, the weak­ness of China has re­sulted in the chaos and dis­or­der of the whole East Asia. Thirdly, the pa­rade has shown the strength, de­ter­mi­na­tion and co­her­ence of peace­ful China that has been trans­formed from a frag­ile state af­ter war suf­fer­ings into an in­te­grated and en­durable power to safe­guard the world peace and se­cu­rity. Fur­ther­more Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping’s an­nounce­ment to re­duce 300,000 troops en­dorses China’s com­mit­ment to peace. It would also set an ex­am­ple for the world lead­ers to get in­spi­ra­tion for div­i­dend of peace.

Diplo­matic

Prof:

Insight:

In your ob­ser­va­tion how the Chi­nese peo­ple’s war of re­sis­tance against for­eign ag­gres­sion trans­formed Chi­nese cul­ture, his­tory and so­ci­ety? (For our read­ers in­for­ma­tion Prof. Dr. Liu De­bin is na­tive of Changchun, a city that was cap­i­tal of Manchukuo the pup­pet state cre­ated by the Im­pe­rial Ja­pan in af­ter­math of Manchurian cri­sis)

Pri­mar­ily be­ing na­tive of this city we suf­fered a lot and I would say that peo­ple of North­east China were ag­o­nized longer than the other parts of China. How­ever, we as­pire for a peace­ful, co­op­er­a­tive and last­ing friend­ship be­tween the two coun­tries. Se­condly, I think es­sen­tially the cam­paign against the Ja­panese ag­gres­sion pro­moted the for­ma­tion and strengthen the mod­ern Chi­nese na­tion­al­ism. This ex­ter­nal ag­gres­sion of­fered us an op­por­tu­nity to unite to­gether again since the col­lapse against fas­cist forces.

Diplo­matic

Prof:

Insight:

Joseph Nye in­tro­duced the con­cept of Soft Power and Pub­lic Diplo­macy, do you agree with him and how do you vi­su­al­ize th­ese con­cepts from Chi­nese per­spec­tive? Is Chi­nese Soft Power sim­i­lar to that of in­tro­duced by Nye or some­what dif­fer­ent?

Soft power is a very in­ter­est­ing and rel­a­tively new con­cept in Post­war In­ter­na­tional Re­la­tions. Joseph Nye char­ac­ter­ized Power into Hard Power and Soft Power and set up a new ap­proach for re­search. I also ac­com­plished my doc­toral dis­ser­ta­tion around the cat­e­go­riza­tion of Amer­i­can Soft Power. Con­trary to this, the no­tion of Soft Power varies in dif­fer­ent re­gions and na­tions de­pend­ing on the source. We in­deed learned from Nye’s con­cept and we paid con­sid­er­able at­ten­tion on Soft Power and Pub­lic Diplo­macy stud­ies, but dif­fer­ent coun­tries have will eas­ily lo­cate the dif­fer­ences of Chi­nese Soft Power from many dis­cus­sions, pub­li­ca­tions, sem­i­nars and con­fer­ences. For ex­am­ple, some schol­ars ar­gued that the Chi­nese model of eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment and poverty re­duc­tion (1/4th of the pop­u­la­tion) can be char­ac­ter­ized as source of Chi­nese Soft Power. Akin to this, dis­ci­pline,

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