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IdentifierCreatedClassificationOrigin
08BEIJING1843 2008-05-13 10:48:00 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Beijing
Cable title:  

DEPUTY SECRETARY DISCUSSES BILATERAL DIALOGUES,

Tags:   PREL PGOV PTER MARR MASS MCAP CH TW BM 
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R 131048Z MAY 08
FM AMEMBASSY BEIJING
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 7255
INFO RUCNASE/ASEAN MEMBER COLLECTIVE
RUEHOO/CHINA POSTS COLLECTIVE
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					  C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 BEIJING 001843 

SIPDIS

DOD FOR OSD/APSA SHINN/SEDNEY/HILL

E.O. 12958: DECL: 05/13/2028
TAGS: PREL PGOV PTER MARR MASS MCAP CH TW BM
SUBJECT: DEPUTY SECRETARY DISCUSSES BILATERAL DIALOGUES,
MIL-MIL, BURMA, TAIWAN WITH LTG MA XIAOTIAN

BEIJING 00001843 001.2 OF 003


Classified By: Political Minister Counselor Aubrey Carlson. Reasons
1.
4 (b) and (d).



1. (U) May 11, 2008; 3:00 p.m.; Beijing, Ministry of National
Defense, Ba Yi Building.



2. (U) Participants:

UNITED STATES
The Deputy Secretary
Ambassador Clark T. Randt, Jr.
Thomas Christensen, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for
East Asian and Pacific Affairs
David Sedney, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for East
Asia
BG Charles Hooper, Defense Attache, United States Embassy
Kaye Lee, Special Assistant to the Deputy Secretary of State
Ted Wittenstein, Special Assistant to the Deputy Secretary of
State
LTC Jeff Louie, Assistant Air Attache, United States Embassy
Roy Therrien, Embassy notetaker
James Brown, Interpreter

CHINA
Lieutenant General Ma Xiaotian, People's Liberation Army
(PLA) Deputy Chief of the General Staff
Senior Captain (Navy) Guan Youfei, Deputy Chief, Ministry of
National Defense (MND) Foreign Affairs Office (FAO)
Senior Colonel Huang Xueping, Deputy Director of
American/Oceanian Affairs Bureau, MND FAO
Colonel Guo Hangwei, Executive Assistant for LTGEN Ma
PLA notetakers
Interpreter



3. (C) Summary: In their May 11 meeting, Deputy Secretary
Negroponte and PLA Deputy Chief of the General Staff Ma
Xiaotian agreed on the importance of keeping up the positive
momentum on bilateral dialogues. LTGEN Ma said China is
studying the U.S. request to hold the second round of
Strategic Nuclear Talks in China in September, but expressed
concern that the talks may be "a little repetitious" if held
too close to the 10th round of the Defense Consultative Talks
(DCTs) planned for the second half of 2008. LTGEN Ma noted
that he looks forward to meeting with Acting U/S Rood in June
for the Security Dialogue. Claiming the U.S.-China
military-to-military relationship is "lagging" behind the
political, cultural and economic relationships, LTGEN Ma
called for an explanation of why 14 military exchanges to the
United States in 2008 have allegedly been denied or remain
undecided. (Note: DASD Sedney met ay 12 with the PLA to
clarify this issue.) LTGEN Ma said PRC relief supplies to
Burma have been distributed to the people. He assured the
Deputy Secretary the PRC will "do its best" to urge officials
in Burma to receive U.S. relief supplies. Although the
January and March election results in Taiwan "improved
stability and relaxed tensions" in the region, LTGEN Ma said,
"there is still a long way to go" for the two sides to
establish genuine mutual trust and develop a structure for
long-lasting peace. End Summary.

Importance of Expanded Dialogue


--------------------------





4. (C) In their May 11 meeting, Deputy Secretary Negroponte
and PLA Deputy Chief of the General Staff Ma Xiaotian agreed
on the importance of keeping up the positive momentum in
bilateral dialogues. The Deputy Secretary, emphasizing the
importance of exchanges at all levels, said more dialogue on
all issues, especially security matters, is good for both
countries. LTGEN Ma said that even though the United States
and PRC sometimes have different strategic interests, with
concerted efforts, "we will always find common ground, common
interests." LTGEN Ma emphasized the importance of building
personal relationships in the security field.

Strategic Nuclear Talks in September?


--------------------------





5. (C) The Deputy Secretary thanked the PRC for sending
Second Artillery and Academy of Military Science
representatives to the United States April 21-22 for the
first Strategic Nuclear Dialogue. LTGEN Ma noted that the
PRC is studying the U.S. request to hold the second round of
Strategic Nuclear Talks in China in September, but expressed

BEIJING 00001843 002.2 OF 003


concern that the talks may be "a little repetitious" if held
too close to the 10th round of the Defense Consultative Talks
(DCTs) planned for the second half of 2008. The Deputy
Secretary acknowledged Ma's concern but pointed out that Ma's
own emphasis on building personal relationships might be best
addressed by more, not fewer, discussions.

Security Dialogue Likely in Early June


--------------------------





6. (C) The Deputy Secretary noted that Undersecretary of
State for Arms Control and International Security Affairs
Rood will be coming to Beijing soon for the Security Dialogue
to discuss issues such as force modernization, transparency
and space policy with AFM He Yafei. The Deputy Secretary
said the United States hopes the PLA will take part in this
dialogue and both sides can take the opportunity to delve
into security issues in detail. LTGEN Ma noted that he looks
forward to meeting with U/S Rood in early June at the
Security Dialogue. (Note: The MFA has not yet formally
accepted our proposal to hold the Security Dialogue in early
June.)

Military-to-Military Exchanges "Not That Balanced"


--------------------------



--------------------------





7. (C) LTGEN Ma claimed the bilateral military-to-military
relationship is "lagging" behind the political, cultural and
economic relationships. Calling the relationship between the
two countries' armed forces "very positive," LTGEN Ma
specifically cited the "functional level" and "educational
field" as areas for expanded exchanges. Noting the two
countries already have a good framework for exchanges at the
policy level, the Deputy Secretary called on LTGEN Ma to
consider "opportunities for more junior officers to get to
know their counterparts better."



8. (C) LTGEN Ma said that at the 9th Defense Consultative
Talks (DCTs) in December 2007, the United States and China
agreed to have 61 exchanges in 2008, 31 to China and 30 to
the United States. Since then, he claimed, the PRC has
hosted "a dozen" exchanges, while the United States has only
hosted four: the Strategic Nuclear Dialogue, a PLA military
course and two cadet exchanges, one from the Nanjing Polytech
Academy and the other from the PLA Air Force Academy. Of the
other 26 programs, LTGEN Ma claimed 12 have been approved
while the remaining 14 have "been declined or yet to be
reported." LTGEN Ma asked for an explanation as soon as
possible. The Deputy Secretary agreed that the United States
and China should follow up at the working level to examine
opportunities for exchanges.



9. (C) The PRC has hosted the "vast majority" of exchanges
this year, LTGEN Ma alleged, and the PLA is "doing its best
to accommodate" U.S. military visits. LTGEN Ma cited the
visits of then-Defense Secretary Rumsfeld and CODEL Skelton
to the Second Artillery Headquarters, "a place that had never
been open to foreign political leaders before." He said the
PRC allowed the current and former Chairmen of the Joint
Chiefs of Staff, ADM Mullen and GEN Pace, to see the Su27
fighter jet, T99 main battle tank, and China's "best
conventional submarine, the 039 class." LTGEN Ma said that
China gives much better access and shows greater transparency
to the United States than it does to other countries. He
noted that Central Military Commission (CMC) Vice Chairman Xu
Caihou and PLA Air Force Commander and CMC member Xu Qiliang
will travel to the United States this year, in addition to an
exchange between the Presidents of each country's National
Defense University and a PLA Military Region Commander visit
to PACOM Headquarters. DASD Sedney promised to discuss LTGEN
Ma's concerns in a May 12 meeting with his counterpart.

PRC Relief Supplies Getting to Burma


--------------------------





10. (C) Following the Deputy Secretary's query, LTGEN Ma said
that PRC relief supplies to Burma moved in two shipments, one
worth 4 million RMB (USD 571 thousand) and another worth 30
million RMB (USD 4.3 million). An assistant to LTGEN Ma
explained that the first PRC shipment arrived May 3, with the
PRC Ambassador to Burma on hand for the delivery. The
General's aide claimed the supplies were given to the Burmese
Government, then "handed out on the spot" to the people. The
Deputy Secretary noted that the United States has relief

BEIJING 00001843 003.2 OF 003


supplies "for strictly humanitarian purposes" ready to go but
has been unable to deliver them. The Deputy Secretary asked
for PRC assistance in obtaining Burmese approval to deliver
relief supplies, to which LTGEN Ma responded, "we will do our
best."

Taiwan


--------------------------





11. (C) LTGEN Ma expressed appreciation for U.S. public
statements on the March 22 UN referendum in Taiwan. LTGEN Ma
said that the results of the legislative elections in January
and the referendum and presidential election votes in March
had led to "improved stability and relaxed tensions" in the
cross-Strait region. There is "still a long way to go," he
said, for the two sides to establish genuine mutual trust and
develop a structure for long-lasting peace. LTGEN Ma
expressed opposition to U.S. arms sales to Taiwan,
"especially of advanced weapons, like the F16 C/D." The
Deputy Secretary stressed the U.S. commitment to its one
China policy based on the three Joint Communiques and the
Taiwan Relations Act and assured LTGEN Ma that the United
States acts responsibly.



12. (U) The traveling party cleared this cable.
RANDT