"Today, given the astronomical stakes at play, many assume that armed conflict between the two giants is out of the question....Yet, as China flexes its muscles in the South China Sea and East China Sea, the risks of an inadvertent clash on the water or in the air are growing by the day."
"U.S. military activities in the SCS have harmed China in an unnecessary way and silenced the moderates’ voice in China, while stimulating Chinese nationalism. It creates tremendous internal and external pressure for Beijing, thus forcing the country to respond aggressively. In this case, it is inevitable for China to deploy military facilities and conduct military exercises in the SCS; otherwise, the government cannot dilute the increasing domestic nationalism. As Ouyang Yujing, director general of the Department of Boundary and Ocean Affairs of China’s Foreign Ministry, has said, the relationship between China and the United States is like a spring. The more pressure from U.S., the larger the rebound from China."
"The fact is since October 2015 the muscular actions continuously provoked and humiliated China and forced China to react."
By Feng Zhang
"A new status quo demands China clarify its strategic intentions. Right now, not even the Chinese leadership has a clear answer to that question. Among the three schools analyzed above, only the extreme hardliners have a quick, but highly destabilizing, answer. The rest of China is debating what China’s strategy toward the South China Sea should be. This is an important fact. It suggests that China’s South China Sea policy has not hardened yet, and is thus malleable."
"'We need to co-operate with China where we can and confront China where we must,” Adm Harris said in Washington last week, describing Chinese behaviour as at times “provocative and aggressive'."
"China’s faux “white hulls” amount to a symbolic shot across the bow of Japanese forces, said Jeffrey Hornung, a fellow at the Sasakawa Peace Foundation."
"'China is probing, in part, to provoke a Japanese overreaction,” Yoshihara said. “Such an overreaction would allow China to depict Japan as the aggressor and would in turn give Beijing some diplomatic cover to counter-escalate to achieve its operational aims in the East China Sea.'"
"“This action by the US side threatened China’s sovereignty and security interests, endangered the staff and facilities on the reef and damaged regional peace and stability,” Lu Kang told reporters."
"'The idea is that if we were ever to get into a bust-up in the South China Sea, the Chinese would not know for sure what sort of capabilities the US might have,' says Shawn Brimley, a former White House and Pentagon official now at the Center for a New American Security. 'This might have some deterrent impact on the potential for provocative behaviour.'"
By John McCain
"time for the US to move beyond symbolic gestures and launch a robust 'freedom of the seas campaign'."
"In addition to being a listening post, the facility could be used a base for military operations in the region, he added."
"Over the next five years, Japan will increase its Self Defence Force in the East China Sea by about a fifth to almost 10,000 personnel, including missile batteries that will help Japan draw a defensive curtain along the island chain.Chinese ships sailing from their eastern seaboard must pass through this barrier to reach the Western Pacific, access to which Beijing needs both as a supply line to the rest of the world's oceans and for naval power projection."
An archive of news and resources on East Asian security. Rather than adhering to a particular political agenda, this archive aims to bring together diverse and insightful resources found while conducting research.