Rumsfeld Urges More Transparency from Chinese Military
Rumsfeld Urges More Transparency from Chinese
By Donna Miles, American Forces Press Service.
China -- (AFPS) October 20, 2005 --
Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld urged members of China's Academy of
Military Science today to share information that could shed light on its
military programs and, hopefully, eliminate concerns by the United States and
by Donna Miles.
Rumsfeld, at the academy for the last official session during his three-day
visit to China's capital city, urged military leaders at the prestigious academy
-- the Chinese equivalent to U.S. military war colleges -- to help break the
information logjam about its military.
The Academy of Military Science falls under direct control of the Chinese
Community Party and conducts research programs in support of the Chinese armed
China's improvements in its strategic strike capability, with its missile
forces capable of reaching many areas of the world beyond the Pacific region, "give
us questions," the secretary told the group. "As a result, many countries with
interests in the region are asking questions about China's intentions."
It's clearly up to the Chinese people and their government to decide on its
plans and programs, as well as how much information it wants to share about its
intentions, Rumsfeld acknowledged. "But it is also true that greater clarity
would generate greater certainty in the region," he said.
Similarly, he said, more information about China's military spending would help
clear up uncertainty about China. He noted that DoD's report on China's military
power -- something, he explained, Congress requires each year -- suggests that
China spends "two to three times" what it says it spends on its military.
"To the extent that defense expenditures are considerably higher than what is
published, neighbors understandably wonder what the reason might be for the
disparity between reality and public statements," he said.
Rumsfeld emphasized that military modernization "is perfectly appropriate"
when it's carried out transparently.
He noted the U.S. military's transformation and changes in how the armed
forces are organized, trained, equipped and the kinds of operations they carry
out. As the U.S. military changes its global posture to reflect 21st century
rather than Cold War-era demands and threats, it's doing so "in a very public
way," he said.
The U.S. military anticipates ongoing transformation as it institutes changes
Rumsfeld said are vital to defense of the country and support of friends and
allies around the world.
Rumsfeld pointed to ongoing cooperation between the United States and China
on a variety of areas, including trade, counterterrorism and the Six-Party Talks
focused on eliminating North Korea's nuclear programs. "We value our
relationship with your country and recognize the challenges and believe that
success in our relationship will require both cooperation and candor," he said.
During a short question-and-answer session following Rumsfeld's address, he
responded to questions about U.S. military transformation, his support for
China's stated interest in peacekeeping and humanitarian activities, and his
desire to see more military-to-military activities between the United States and
Pentagon spokesman Lawrence Di Rita told reporters the Academy of Military
Science visit, and the entire visit to China, was "very purposeful" and went a
long way in helping "demystify" the relationship between the two country's