An editorial in the Global Times Friday said the Cold War era is long over, “but the Cold War mentality hasn’t disappeared”.
The US and Soviet camps confronted each other militarily, ideologically and economically during the Cold War, but with its end, the political foundations for the confrontation disappeared.
“But the competition between countries didn’t end with it. While Cold War memories still linger, there are real worries that a new cold war may break out between China and the US,” warned the daily.
It added that many countries feel the urge to strengthen their efforts to secure national interests in a changing global strategic grid.
“Mistrust is expanding among major powers and in many regions.”
The editorial accused the US of having “the greediest pursuit of security”.
“It often guards against other countries in an aggressive way, including adopting policies of containment. This is the real reason that post-Cold War global politics haven’t settled down strategically,” it said.
Though later the editorial said the history of the Cold War may not be repeated between China and the US, it was quick to add that “tensions or confrontation may not be completely avoided between Beijing and Washington”.
The daily wrote about “a theory that if China and the US see each other as enemies, they may become so. This kind of thinking adds to China’s strategic dilemma”.
“China has to stay alert. This is the bottom line of securing its safety. This should also be the bottom line as Chinese society judges and assesses the world security situation. It will only jeopardize itself if it unilaterally abandons this principle,” it said.
It went on to say that China’s guarding against the West is defensive, to protect its rights of peaceful development.
“This is a minimum level of vigilance. If the West cannot even accept this and intensifies containment against China, the consequences have to be shared by both sides, or the entire world.
“Mistrust between countries remains stubborn. China has to stick to realistic thinking and restrained behaviour.”