In an recent article wrote for China-US Focus.com titled “The New York Times is Wrong about the South China Sea”, U.S. Writer and Foreign Policy Analyst Ben Reynolds pointed out that one editorial of the New York Times “echoes a number of mistaken arguments that are popular with American policymakers”, and hoped that the New York Times could be more “thorough and careful with the facts” in future pieces, instead of selling the American public on yet “another disastrous foreign intervention”.

An aerial photo taken on Sept. 25, 2015 from a seaplane of Hainan Maritime Safety Administration shows cruise vessel Haixun 1103 heading to the Yacheng 13-1 drilling rig during a patrol in south China Sea. (Xinhua/Zhao Yingquan)
An aerial photo taken on Sept. 25, 2015 from a seaplane of Hainan Maritime Safety Administration shows cruise vessel Haixun 1103 heading to the Yacheng 13-1 drilling rig during a patrol in south China Sea. (Xinhua/Zhao Yingquan)

“Most significantly, the Times lends credence to arguments that dramatically inflate the threat that China poses to the region and the United States,” he wrote, “this editorial demonstrates the difficulties that face American advocates for peace in a media environment dominated by uncritical support for U.S. foreign policy”.

Reynolds argued that the editorial has misconstrued key points about international norms in the South China Sea and in Asia as a whole. For example, the“freedom of navigation” being asserted by U.S. is for U.S. military vessels, not oil tankers. Needless to say China never poses a threat to the trade in this area.

He stressed that the newspaper has demonstrated different attitudes towards China and Vietnam on the construction activities in the South China Sea. To China, the project is “aggressive and outrageous tactic”; but to Vietnam, U.S. ally, the ongoing military outposts construction just being on-purposely ignored.

“Misleading the American people about U.S.-China rivalry in the South China Sea with omissions and half-truths is the job of the Defense Department, not the press”, he mocked. “Until major American press outlets reorient their outlook on U.S. foreign policy toward China, it will remain our responsibility to correct dangerous and mistaken ideas that can only contribute to hostility between the American and Chinese peoples”.

(People’s Daily)

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