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Chinese Consulate visits CSULB

Consul general leaves an inspirational message of peace.

Chinese+consulate+General+Liu+Jian+pushed+for+peace+relations+between+China+and+the+United+States+at+the+discussion+event+Wednesday+in+Peterson+Hall+1-Room+140.
Chinese consulate General Liu Jian pushed for peace relations between China and the United States at the discussion event Wednesday in Peterson Hall 1-Room 140.

Chinese consulate General Liu Jian pushed for peace relations between China and the United States at the discussion event Wednesday in Peterson Hall 1-Room 140.

Bobby Yagake

Bobby Yagake

Chinese consulate General Liu Jian pushed for peace relations between China and the United States at the discussion event Wednesday in Peterson Hall 1-Room 140.

Estela García, Staff Writer

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It seemed like a normal Wednesday evening at Cal State Long Beach, but what a majority of students on campus didn’t realize was that a foreign diplomat, his staff and an array of body guards were walking the premises.

A lecture hall in Peterson Hall 1 at CSULB filled with a wide number of students and business professionals alike, as the College of Business Administration and the International Business Association welcomed Consul General Liu Jian, of the Consulate General of China. The spontaneous seminar discussed the controversial topic of foreign relations between China and the United States.

Jian and his entourage didn’t have to travel far from his Koreatown-based office in Los Angeles to talk about foreign policy. The primary focus for the current consul general, who also served as the Chinese ambassador to countries such as Afghanistan, Malaysia and Pakistan, was to discuss the importance and development of the relationship between the United States and China.

According to his official website, “the Chinese Consulate is committed to promoting exchanges and cooperation between its consular district and China, to advancing the mutual understanding and friendship between Chinese and American people” and also aiding Chinese citizens in receiving legal status with immigration and government information.  

The consul general took front and center as a well-spoken politician who is clearly passionate about sharing a Chinese perspective with an American audience.

He offered part of a Confucius quote: “a man matures at 30,” to describe how China and the United States have been able to, in the last 30 years, improve their interests on a various range of topics such as economic prosperity, culture differences and communication practices.

He explained that as different as the U.S. and China are, they have grown similar over the years. They are each other’s largest partner in trade. Each of their militaries are highly advanced and involved in situations globally together. Over 300,000 Chinese students have obtained an American education, as student exchange programs in Asia are growing popular in recent years.

But even with his optimism, Jian didn’t ignore the obvious.

“The differences are what make China-U.S. relations difficult to straighten out because  the stakes for either country are higher than ever,” Jian said. He went on to point out that each country is under new administrations that have caused unsteady stirs worldwide.

The theme of the night fell on the idea of understanding an idea Jian revisited throughout the discussion: “The foundation of China-U.S. relations is really the relations between people.”

When asked about how important awareness of China-U.S. relations is, Jian replied by saying that the relationship between two nations goes farther than “politics and government.” History and foreign policy are as humane as harmony and peace, according to Jian.

“Peace is the most important thing,” said Jian as his final remarks of the presentation.

As Jian approached his seat at the end of his speech, he received a round of applause from a stricken room that was impressed. Hands rose up to ask questions to the consul general about his experiences on the global stage, his early life and education and even how many languages he knew.

Members of the IBA at CSULB were thankful for the opportunity to have Jian on campus for public discussion. IBA president John Ultreras explained that organizing the event was no easy task, especially in bringing someone of such high ranking.

“It was a long process and difficult to pull off and I had my entire team able to do so behind me and in the end it was a great success,” Ultreras said. He elaborated on how he had connections within a port city in China and that the possibility of having an important speaker visit CSULB was an option; however, it was tabled due to difficulties in scheduling for both sides. Fortunately, an sudden opening in the consul general’s schedule allowed him and Ultreras to meet one another and carry forth with the event.

The IBA president said he admires what the Chinese diplomat had to say and hopes to follow in the same path.

“I want to be able to impact the world on a global stage and show people that there is a possibility for peace and love. There just needs to be work towards it,” Ultreras said.

 

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