On September 22, 2022 local time, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi delivered a keynote speech at the Asia Society headquarters in New York.
Wang Yi said, Partner or rival? Cooperation or confrontation? These are questions of fundamental importance in China-U.S. relations, and no catastrophic mistakes could be made. To hold the bottom line of peace, we must make the right choice.
Wang Yi stressed, China chooses peace and commits to peaceful development. Our most basic expectation for China-U.S. relations is for the two countries to live with each other in peace.
Wang Yi said, for China and the U.S. to coexist in peace, we must follow the rules that both sides subscribe to. Bilaterally, they should be the three China-U.S. Joint Communiqués and the important common understandings reached between leaders of the two countries, not imposing one's domestic law on the other. At the international level, they should be the basic norms governing international relations based on the purposes and principles of the U.N. Charter - the rules and order established with the tremendous cost borne by the world anti-fascist alliance and the enormous sacrifice made by the over 35 million Chinese casualties. As a founding member of the United Nations and the first country to sign the U.N. Charter, China has no reason, still less the need, to reinvent the wheel. China and the United States have a responsibility to jointly uphold the order and rules. If the United States' repeated reference to a "rules-based international order" means the above-mentioned rules, China has no objection. But if it means something else on which no broad-based consensus exists, then the United States has no right to impose it on others.
Wang Yi pointed out, the biggest obstacle to peaceful coexistence between China and the United States is the Cold War mentality. Just as colonialism faded out in the 20th century, the Cold War mentality has long become an anachronism in the 21st century. Some in the United States try to take China down by repeating the containment tactic used on the former Soviet Union, and hope to encircle China through geopolitical maneuvering like the Indo-Pacific strategy. Such attempts will only prove futile, because China is not the former Soviet Union, and the world is not what it used to be. Only after waking up from the Cold-War dream can one view and handle China-U.S. relations in a cool-headed, rational and realistic way.