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China's Sense of Self and Place: The top goal of the Chinese national security leadership is to keep the national party in power, said Bernard Cole, international history professor at National Defense University. Speaking at AFA's Air & Space Conference Sept. 16, Cole said that, secondly, they want to be an East Asian power, meaning that they don't want anything to happen in Asia of which they would disapprove. And concerning issues affecting the world order, the Chinese want their voice to be heard.