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Cablegate: Media Reaction: President Obama's Visit to China

Published: Tue 17 Nov 2009 10:05 AM
VZCZCXRO0145
RR RUEHCN RUEHGH RUEHVC
DE RUEHBJ #3130 3211005
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 171005Z NOV 09
FM AMEMBASSY BEIJING
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 6871
INFO RUEHOO/CHINA POSTS COLLECTIVE
RHMFIUU/CDR USPACOM HONOLULU HI
UNCLAS BEIJING 003130
DEPARTMENT FOR INR/R/MR, EAP/CM, EAP/PA, EAP/PD, C
HQ PACOM FOR PUBLIC DIPLOMACY ADVISOR (J007)
SIPDIS
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL ECON KMDR OPRC CH
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION: PRESIDENT OBAMA'S VISIT TO CHINA
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Editorial Quotes
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PRESIDENT OBAMA'S VISIT TO CHINA
a. "American public diplomacy's new extension"
Guangdong 21st Century Publishing Company Ltd.'s business newspaper
21st Century Business Herald (21Shiji Jingji Baodao)(11/17)(pg 2):
"It now appears that the briefing that was held at the U.S. Embassy
in Beijing on the afternoon of November 12 for the main bloggers in
China was meant not only to listen to the bloggers' thoughts about
President Obama's first visit to China, but also to leverage them to
pass on to Internet users the United States' message that 'we are
coming.' This was an example of U.S. public diplomacy outreach to
Chinese Internet users. This was not a one-off event connected with
President Obama's visit to China, but rather just the start. The
second such event was the Town Hall meeting that Obama had with
college students in Shanghai on November 16, which was billed as a
'dialogue.' A few years ago an American diplomat said that the U.S.
government was putting more emphasis on public diplomacy and had
arranged trainings in this field. The goal of the U.S. government's
public diplomacy efforts is to make contact with local people as
much as possible, not merely facilitate government-to-government
exchanges. In October, U.S. Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman
visited Guangzhou, where he went to an English-language school for
the disabled. Using his influence, the U.S. Ambassador was able to
bring the school to the media's attention. This case highlights the
benefits of public diplomacy: it is not a problem as long as it is
done in the right place and benefits the receiver."
b. "Obama reiterates U.S. intention not to contain China"
The official Communist Party international news publication Global
Times (Huanqiu Shibao)(11/17)(pg 1): "President Obama set the basic
tone for China-U.S. relations in Shanghai. Professor Miu Qihao at
the Shanghai Science and Technology Information Research Institute
said that choosing Shanghai as the first stop of the visit is a sign
of maturity in China-U.S. exchanges, and provided a channel for
discussing issues other the major political ones. By commenting on
certain issues in China-U.S. relations in Shanghai, the United
States was able to test the international reaction first and give
both China and itself more room to maneuver [before President Obama
met China's political leaders in Beijing]. Professor Zhao Guojun at
the Shanghai Academy of Social Science's Center for International
Affairs said that Obama's visit has definitely upgraded China-U.S.
relations. In contrast to previous U.S. presidential visits, Obama
has paid a lot of attention to bilateral cooperation and set higher
expectations for the relationship. Despite differing views on the
idea of a 'strategic partnership,' the general trend in China-U.S.
relations is towards greater cooperation."
c. "Dialogue is good and beneficial"
The official Communist Party People's Daily (Renmin Ribao)(11/17)(pg
1): "Soon after landing in China, Obama started a dialogue with
students, which is a very good thing. President Obama's dialogue
with the Shanghai municipal government and the people of Shanghai
shows his emphasis on this major economic and cultural city in
China. It is also noteworthy that Obama said that China's success
is not necessarily a threat to other countries, and that the United
States' success is not necessarily an example for other countries.
Such rational and honest thinking reflects his wisdom as the leader
of modern America. The questions asked by the students in Shanghai,
which were obviously directed at certain bilateral issues, show that
China's younger generation has a sober understanding of certain
structural and strategic conflicts in the China-U.S. bilateral
relationship. We did not expect that a one-time, American-style
Town Hall meeting would solve these major issues. We sincerely hope
that Obama will listen to more Chinese people and help the Chinese
people gain a better understanding of the United States."
HUNTSMAN
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