Marching forward. Photo: Reuters / Stringer
Marching forward. Photo: Reuters / Stringer

There has been no shortage of criticism from Beijing following the release of the Trump administration’s National Security Strategy (NSS). China’s defense ministry joined other agencies and state media in decrying the document’s focus on China, arguing that it is counterproductive to the development of US-China relations.

The NSS “creates sensationalized hype about the modernization of China’s military,” a statement on the ministry’s website said Wednesday. The plan runs counter to the trend of the development of Sino-US relations, the statement added.

“China has and will always be a promoter of peace, a contributor to global development, and a protector of international order. […] Any report that aims to distort this truth and maliciously vilify will be in vein.”

“Regardless what level of development China reaches, it will never proclaim itself hegemon and never resort to expansionism,” the statement went on. “The development and strengthening of China’s military is the development and strengthening of the power of peace, and will aid in the world’s peace, stability and prosperity.”

The Trump NSS, released earlier this week, marked a shift in US policy toward China, notably referring to China as a strategic competitor.

“[China] is building the most capable and well-funded military in the world, after our own. Its nuclear arsenal is growing and diversifying,” the NSS reads. “Part of China’s military modernization and economic expansion is due to its access to the U.S. innovation economy, including America’s world-class universities.”

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