Outlook Weekly published an article on April 21, 2008, titled, “On the Rights to Speak and Soft Power.” It was targeting for Western media’s criticism of the Chinese Communist regime on Tibetan issues. “With regard to the international public opinions, we have not seen a fundamental change in the (disadvantageous) status, characterized by the strong Western media and the weak propaganda from our side. The propaganda battle initiated by the Western media towards China is to show off the Western society’s propaganda domination,” the article stated, “We must be fully aware of the special strategic importance of building up soft power in our country.” It also said: “The CCP’s 17th National Congress placed the improvement of our soft power at the level of having national strategic importance.”
The following is the translation for this article. 
Centering surround the so-called “Tibetan issues,” and the Olympic Torch Relay, some Western media’s distorting ways, and certain Western politicians’ incitement, have become a familiar scene to the public. The self-proclaimed objective- and impartial-Western media with their ulterior motives, all along spread false propaganda; as a result, some of the everyday people who do not know the truth, or who knows nothing about China and those who even cannot tell where Tibet is located, taking the stance as “ The saviors,” by telling lies. It truly is a tragedy in a civilized society.
We will certainly choose to present facts to validate our argument, and fight back strongly on fair grounds, when dealing with important issues that concerns with national interests. However, the fact that this round of irresponsible defamation of China is able to have impact in Western society has its own internal factor. For example, a German politician wrote an article recently, claiming that the Western world is prepared to launch a spiritual-cold war against the emerging China.
We have, therefore, come to see that with regard to the international public opinions and we have not seen a fundamental change in the (disadvantageous) status characterized by the strong Western media and the weak propaganda from our side. The propaganda battle initiated by the Western media towards China is to show off the Western society’s propaganda supremacy.
Confronted by such a “soft power battle,” how do we improve our own propaganda authority? How do we strengthen the expressions and promulgations of China’s values? It is an urgent task that we are facing in shaping our national soft power.
We must be fully aware of the special strategic importance of formatting the soft power in our country. Soft power, as an important component in the composite national power, refers to a country’s ability to attract people by its system and the inspiration power of its cultural value, as well as the image of its citizens, a kind of intangible influential power. It has a deep impact on people’s viewpoints on international relations. As some experts pointed out, soft power must be placed at a strategic level to achieve any meaningful results.
“Generally, we do not simply establish and make use of soft power in a hurry when specific problems suddenly arise. The function of soft power is to prevent problems; that is, to dissolve problems before they ever arise.” For this reason, the Party’s 17th National Congress placed the improvement of soft power at the national strategic level.
We must pay more attention to aiming at the specific goals and improve the efficacy in the formation of soft power. Between the nations and between the people, how we make our values more acceptable to others is the key aspect and important manifestation to the soft power formation. First, in terms of the targets to be influenced by our soft power, they are not restricted to relationship between nations; they are also manifested in how to influence non-governmental organizations and citizens. Therefore, we must remember this new “microscopic sub-market” in the construction of soft power. Secondly, we must familiarize ourselves with the internationally recognized “game rules,” and make use of the language style that is easy to understand and accepted by the international communities.
It is especially worth noting that in the age of Internet, all countries attach great importance to the powerful information network to promote their values and viewpoints. Internet breaks through the limit of time and space, and has become an important way to improve one’s influence in the international society. Under such an open circumstance, we must grab the first opportunity to spread our own propaganda and control the public opinions. It is essential for us to do so to avoid crises; moreover, it is an active conduct to improve our soft power.
 Outlook Weekly, April 21, 2008