News / Asia

China Expresses Concern Over US Defense Blueprint

U.S. Army soldiers from Stryker Brigade Combat Team stand in line after a live fire drill during joint exercises with South Korea. (2011 File)
U.S. Army soldiers from Stryker Brigade Combat Team stand in line after a live fire drill during joint exercises with South Korea. (2011 File)

Chinese state media are expressing concern over the latest U.S. defense plan, warning that it could damage U.S.-Chinese relations.

The Communist Party-affiliated Global Times newspaper quoted a Chinese defense expert Friday saying the U.S. blueprint announced a day earlier is clearly targeted at China.

The newspaper quoted Renmin University analyst Jin Canrong saying the United States feels threatened by China's rapid development. He warned the new American strategy will make Beijing uncomfortable and could affect bilateral relations.

U.S. President Barack Obama announced the reorganization Thursday. He said the United States will strengthen its presence in the Asia Pacific region even as it cuts billions of dollars from overall defense spending.

The announcement came amid a major buildup in the capabilities of China's military, which in the last year tested its first aircraft carrier and its first stealth fighter jet. Chinese forces are engaged this week in major exercises in Fujian and Liaoning provinces and in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.

China's official Xinhua news agency also commented on the U.S. defense plan, saying the United States is welcome to contribute to peace and stability in the region, but that any militarism will cause ill will and be met by strong opposition.

In its generally restrained commentary, Xinhua said the United States should abstain from flexing its muscles as this will not help solve regional disputes.

Some Western analysts also see the U.S. defense plan as aimed at least in part at countering China's growing power.

Britain's influential newspaper, The Times, reported Friday that, with the reorganization, President Barack Obama was sending "a clear warning signal to China."

The U.S.-based Associated Press news agency, meanwhile, published an analysis saying the new defense strategy was intended to focus on Asian security risks - mainly China and North Korea.

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