"Lots of people in China imagine that the United States is determined to keep their country down and to deny it the role and influence in its region to which its history, size and achievements entitle it."
"There are not a few Americans who apply the same techniques of selective listening and conspiracy theorizing to China. Their suspicions are inflamed by a small army of pundits and polemicists determined to unearth the ghost of Fu Manchu in today's China."
This is so true, yet so counter-intuitive to progress:
"Self-fulfilling paranoia is not a sound basis for cooperative relations between nations. In our own respective national interests, China and America need to cooperate with each other. Despite the problems in our mutual perceptions, the prospects for our doing so are not bad at all."
It's invariable that the big powers will see each other as competitors; it was by being competitors to previous big dogs that they attained their own supremacy in the first place. When everyone is waving around national pride through sticks, flags and rhetoric, though, it becomes increasingly hard to back down gracefully - unless there is an intermediary to facilitate that process.
This has always been Canada's best, most natural role. We are a nation that represents all others - as such, we are the world's pre-eminent negotiators, peacekeepers and solution-finders. Prime Minister Harper has perhaps tried to side-track us from this true calling, but frankly, now is when the world needs Canada as an international Centre more than ever.
"This is because the possible causes of conflict between us are receding, the need to cooperate is increasingly compelling, and the opportunities to accomplish things together are ever more obvious."
After all, doesn't history teach us that the only way forward is together?