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U.S. is making strategic mistakes, China warns

"The Americans are making very, very important strategic mistakes right now. If you take China as an enemy, China will absolutely become the enemy of the U.S," said Maj. Gen. Zhu Chenghu.

By Ed Adamczyk
U.S. is making strategic mistakes, China warns
Chinese soldiers march past part of the United States Embassy in Beijing on May 20, 2014. UPI/Stephen Shaver | License Photo

SINGAPORE, June 2 (UPI) -- Chinese military officers condemned United States officials' critical comments on Beijing's involvement in the South China Sea territorial disputes.

Speaking at a conference in Singapore Sunday, Lt. Gen. Wang Guanzhong, deputy chief of staff of China's military, described recent comments by U.S. Secretary of State Chuck Hagel as criticism without reason. An earlier statement by Hagel described China's installation of an oil rig in disputed waters and subsequent involvement between the navies of China and Vietnam as "destabilizing, unilateral actions."

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"Secretary Hagel, in this kind of public space with many people, openly criticized China without reason. Secretary Hagel's speech is full of encouragement, incitement for the Asia region's instability giving rise to a disturbance," Wang said.

In an interview at the conference, the Wall Street Journal reported that Maj. Gen. Zhu Chenghu said, "The Americans are making very, very important strategic mistakes right now. If you take China as an enemy, China will absolutely become the enemy of the U.S."

"China is very significantly upping the ante here," Hugh White, a professor of strategic studies at the Australian National University said, adding, "What we're seeing is a steady and sharp increase in the overtones of the strategic rivalry."

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