Bush urges China to end `old thinking'

President George W. Bush is imploring China to shed "old ways of thinking and acting," including its lack of candor about details of its military buildup.

The absence of transparency, Bush said in his National Security Strategy report, aggravates worries about China "throughout the region and the world."

Bush did not go as far as some in the administration in assessing China's growing military power.

The CIA, for example, said recently that China's buildup threatens U.S. forces in the region.

In recent days, Pentagon officials have expressed deep unease about what they describe as China's escalating military involvement in Latin America.

Bush's strategy report, which covers a variety of global security issues, was released Thursday ahead of a long-planned visit next month by Chinese President Hu Jintao.

While Bush gave scant attention to the Taiwan question, a top Pentagon official, Peter Rodman, said China had changed the military balance in the Taiwan Strait by deploying 700 ballistic missiles across from Taiwan in recent years.

He said the United States is determined to meet its defense commitment to Taiwan.

Taiwan also was raised Thursday during a press briefing on the strategy report by national security adviser Steven Hadley, reports the AP.


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