Wall Street Journal
, September 8, 2005Column 1 of Page A1
Secret Weapon, Inside Pentagon, A Scholar Shapes Views of China
Michael Pillsbury, influential Pentagon advisor and former Chinalover, believes most Americans have China all wrong. They think of the place as an inherently gentle country intent on economic prosperity.In that camp he lumps the lower ranks of the State Department, theCentral Intelligence Agency, most U.S. investors and the majorityof American China scholars, whom he chides as “Panda Huggers.”Mr. Pillsbury says his mission is to assure that the DefenseDepartment doesn’t fall into the same trap.“Beijing sees the U.S. as an inevitable foe, and is planningaccordingly,” warns the 60-year old China expert. “We’d beremiss not to take that into account.”……“We must start with the acknowledgement, at least, that we areunprepared to understand Chinese thinking,” Mr. Pillsbury says.“And then we must acknowledge that we are facing in China whatmay become the largest challenge in our nation’s history.”…Mr. Pillsbury, a fluent Mandarin speaker and author of threeesoteric books on Chinese military strategy, has become one of thePentagon’s most influential advisors on China, with a direct accessto many of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld’s top aides.