Strong China good for globe

April 17, 1998

Harvard professors Erza Vogel and William Kirby used Beijing University's centennial celebrations as a platform to urge far greater expansion of Sino-US contacts in wide-ranging areas to resolve common problems in an increasingly interdependent world.

They said: "The greatest 20th- century threat to world peace is to weaken and divide China, turning it into a plaything under the global powers ... A stronger, ever more prosperous China is critically in the interest of the world."

They attributed recent improvements in ties between China and the United States to what they called the "realistic attitude" adopted by the two countries.

Professor Vogel, director of the Harvard University Asia Centre and the Fairbank Centre for East Asia Research, says the US media has neglected profound changes taking place in China, including the "growth of rural elections, the spread of rule by law and the adaptation of international institutions".

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