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8 Meanwhile, China, having long been excluded from most international organizations, viewed China’s Image Projection and Its Impact 41 the existing international system as unfair and illegitimate. 9 With the onset of economic reforms in the late 1970s, the Chinese government dramatically altered its world view. Instead of rejecting the existing international system, China came to view it as a structure that offered opportunities worth pursuing. In the 1980s, China abandoned its revolutionary rhetoric and increasingly spoke about the virtue of a peaceful international environment.

Govt calls for building social stability, security,” Xinhua, December 4, 2009. http://news. htm 30. Joseph S. Nye, Soft Power: The Means to Success in World Politics (Cambridge, MA: Perseus, 2004), 11–14. 31. Economic strength can be a source of both hard and soft power. See, for example, Joseph S. Nye, “Think Again: Soft Power,” Foreign Policy, March 1, 2006. 32. See, for example, Part VII of Secretary Hu Jintao’s report to the 17th Congress of the CCP, October 15, 2007, or the speeches presented at a special meeting of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), held in summer 2007, on the topic of China’s culture as a major resource for building China’s soft power; for example “Wu Jianmin: kaizhan wenhua waijiao de jidian sikao” (Wu Jianmin: Some Thoughts on the Development of Cultural Diplomacy), speech by the President of China’s Foreign Affairs University and former Ambassador to France, Wu Jianmin, July 24, 2007.

In other cases, policy actions precede public diplomacy concerns. A policy is changed for domestic economic, political, or social reasons, and it is only afterward that someone realizes the new policy should be included in the country’s public diplomacy strategy. 54 For example, Chinese officials took the initiative to choose the environment as one of the themes for the Beijing Olympics when it was bidding for the Games, long before the general global public became aware of their pollution problems.

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