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China blasts S. Korea for `playing soccer on a cliff`

Posted December. 24, 2010 11:10,   


The Chinese government and media are growingly critical of South Korea’s tough stance versus North Korea’s provocations.

Chinese media made an outright threat in saying Beijing “has its means” if Seoul does not listen to its advice, while the Chinese government condemned the South’s military drills while saying nothing of the North’s provocations.

○ Chinese media urges “means to move Seoul”

The Global Times, a sister paper of the People’s Daily, an organ of the Chinese Communist Party, said in an editorial of “a few means” China can use to make South Korea move. While avoiding war on the Korean Peninsula is important, the South seems to be “drunk with something,” the newspaper said, stressing that if Seoul refuses to listen to Beijing’s advice, China should resort to “a new way” to move the South.

In an editorial titled, “South Korea should not consider a cliff as a soccer field,” the newspaper said Seoul seems to be “playing soccer on a dangerous cliff” by conducting a massive military exercise at a time when the peninsula is about to recover stability after the North did not retaliate Monday.

Noting that the joint exercise was the South’s biggest ground drill in peacetime and conducted just 30 kilometers away from the Demilitarized Zone separating both Koreas, the newspaper said the South appears “drunk with patriotism.” It also asked if Seoul wanted to provoke retaliation from Pyongyang.

In an interview with the Global Times, Le Yucheng, director-general of the Policy Planning Department of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, criticized the exercise by saying Beijing’s proposal for six-party discussion of the situation was better than Seoul’s “military drill show.”

In a survey of 20 Chinese experts on the Korean Peninsula, however, Yu said 12 of them said a military clash was “unlikely,” three said “impossible,” and the other five saw it as “likely.”

○ Siding with N. Korea

The Global Times also said in the editorial, “South Korean leaders might have the illusion that they suffered a lot from the North`s `provocation.` But do they understand that the North Koreans also had bitter pills to swallow when the South launched military exercises with the U.S. time and again?”

The Chinese newspaper also added that South Korea, which is sandwiched by the U.S., China and Japan, has come to “worship” a hard-line stance and is “irrationally demanding” that Beijing side with Seoul and pressure Pyongyang.

The daily also defined South Korean civilian and military casualties caused by the North’s artillery attack on Yeonpyeong as “what happened in an exchange of fire at a disputed area.”

On the situation on the Korean Peninsula, including the firing drill on Yeonpyeong, Chinese Assistant Foreign Minister Cui Tian-kai said Monday, “Nobody has the right to promote conflict or war.”

On the same day, the Global Times said, “The North`s international image is being quietly altered” as it showed its calmness and restraint over the South’s military drill, while urging the South to think about whether it did not become the provoker.

○ Aiming to weaken S. Korea-U.S. alliance

On Wednesday, China’s official Xinhua News Agency suggested its intention to drive a wedge between South Korea and the U.S. by reporting that Washington was openly supporting Seoul’s live-fire drill because the exercise was in U.S. interests.

Xinhua said behind Washington`s strengthening of military and diplomatic ties with Seoul was the hidden U.S. intention to protect its own interests.

In addition, the news agency claimed that South Korea sometimes suffered damage by following the U.S.