China's show of force combines memories and peace
Updated: 2015-09-03 21:09
By Zhang Chunyan in London(China Daily Europe)
China's V-Day parade combined a reminder of the country's important contribution to World War II and its determination to cherish peace, European observers noted.
China's commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII fell on Sep 3, with the highlight of the celebrations the major military parade in Beijing, the first time China has held such a parade to celebrate the end of the war.
"This commemoration reminds people that China made very significant sacrifices to help bring about an ultimate allied victory during the war. Without a Chinese contribution, the overall victory would have been much harder," Rana Mitter, director of the University China Centre at University of Oxford, told China Daily.
"In the west, we don't remember that China is one of the important allies in the World War II, along with the Soviet, the British, and the Americans. China's contribution to the World War II was eventually important, important enough that they should be remembered," Mitter said.
During the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression (1937-45), China pinned down and fought against the main force of the Japanese. To achieve that, both China's military and its civilian population made enormous sacrifices – 35 million casualties.
Kerry Brown, associate fellow at London-based think tank Chatham House, also echoed the belief that the military parade "marks a moment of new confidence for China, where it wants to have its contribution in the World War II more widely understood and recognised."
The representatives of 49 countries and 30 foreign leaders attended the V-Day celebrations in Beijing. Seventeen countries joined the morning military parade, with participants from six continents.
Helga Zepp-LaRouche, founder of the Schiller Institute, an international political and economic think tank which based in Germany, noted, "In combination with President Xi Jinping's win-win strategy as a new model of economic cooperation, which shows the vision of the future and the possibility, to overcome geopolitics, it reminds the world, that the maintenance of peace is the most precious good in our present time."
"To hold a major military parade on the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, is a very powerful way to support the concept of national sovereignty of China and other nations in the pacific region," Zepp-LaRouche said.
The celebration also "shows the ways in which the current Chinese leadership want to key into a history of the country and the Party which mobilizes people, and the World War II struggle and final victory is a major part of that," Brown added.
Besides the military parade, the events including a reception and a gala commemorated the 70th anniversary of victory in the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression and the end of World War II.
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