BEIJING, Sept. 3 (Xinhua) -- The spectacular military parade China that is to be staged here Thursday carries many messages, yet all of them hail from one basic point: Beijing is steadfast in pursuing peaceful development.
Since China announced its plan to hold a military parade to mark the 70th anniversary of its World War II victory, wild speculations have emerged like that China's primary purpose is to flex its muscles at a time of heightened tensions in the South China Sea and with neighboring Japan.
Such guesswork is wide of the mark. China has announced straightforward that the parade would showcase its advanced tanks, aircraft, missiles and other military equipment, but it is hasty and unfounded to conclude that it is aimed at intimidating any other country.
Skeptics should be reminded that it is a long-running tradition for countries around the world to put their latest hi-tech armament on display at military parades.
As for the claim that China intends the event as a saber-rattling occasion to instill fear, it is nothing but nonsense since China has always insisted on resolving disputes via peaceful means and made various tension-mitigating initiatives.
The Chinese military has indeed witnessed rapid growth of its capabilities in recent years. However, China's newly-gained military might is no reason for alarm.
China follows a defense policy that is defensive in nature; it promises in its defense white papers not to strike first. The Chinese military is also a front-runner in global peace-keeping and humanitarian missions.
China, together with many other developing nations, has benefited from the largely peaceful international environment in the past few decades, and now the country, resolute in building a moderately prosperous society by 2020, needs a peaceful environment all the more.
A bitter lesson that China learnt from the 14 years of suffering under Japanese invasion is that peace is not to be taken for granted. Peace can be secured only when one is strong enough to defend oneself.
Therefore, although the Tian'anmen parade is indeed a powerful demonstration of China's military development, the roaring jets and rumbling tanks are not meant to make any other country feel threatened.
Instead, they are telling the world loud and clear that China cherishes peace and its military power serves as an effective guarantee of it.