China has always kept its development of ICBMs strictly confidential. It is US intelligence that has disclosed that China has carried out 7 tests of its new ICBM since July 24, 2012, the last time on April 12, 2016. As China has provided no information about the ICBM, US intelligence has given the ICBM the codename DF-41.
According to Russia media Businessman Daily, Russia monitored the entire process of China’s test of DF-41 with its very powerful radar in April.
It was amazed that the missile changed its trajectory sharply several times to make interception by US anti-missile systems utterly impossible. The missile finally released two independently guided warheads.
US intelligence regards the missile as a headache as it carries more than 10 separately guided warheads. The interception rate of US anti-missile missiles is but 30%. It means the US has to launch more than 30 anti-missile missiles to intercept one DF-41 so that the US simply does not have such a large number of missiles to intercept China’s all DF-41s if DF-41s are interceptable.
According to Washington Post, US highest military command is drawing up a plan on its final decision to wave the right of first strike of nuclear weapons at China and Russia. It is because the US is not sure that its 7,500 nuclear warheads can destroy all Chinese or Russian nuclear weapons and that the US is unable to intercept China’s or Russia’s second-strike nuclear missiles.
There is speculation that DF-41 will soon be deployed on the basis of PLA Daily’s report on June 10 that China’s Rocket Force is conducting all-around upgrading to “great power’s scabbards”, which may refer to the tunnels for DF-31 ICBMs. The tunnels have to be expanded as DF-41 is larger and contain more warheads.
Source: mil.news.sina.com.cn “Russia and the US have monitored the entire process of China’s DF-41 test and been shocked by it” (summary by Chan Kai Yee based on the report in Chinese)
According to Japanese media, a Japanese Soryu-class submarine had stealthily tracked a Chinese fleet that was carrying out a naval drill for 14 days. It had switched off its radio and active sonar to avoid being detected by the Chinese fleet and believed that it had not been detected as the fleet had just disregarded it.
However, when it surfaced to show that it had no enmity, it was amazed to find quite a few float sonars nearby and a Chinese Z-9C helicopter flying around it.
Soryu-class is one of the best conventional submarines very difficult to detect, but Chinese navy has no difficulty to detect it.
Source: blog.sina.com.cn “Japan’s best submarine amazed when it surfaced after tracking Chinese navy fleet for 14 days” (summary by Chan Kai Yee based on the blog in Chinese)
Russian media says China sends its new version of JH-7A fighter/bomber to take part in the Aviadarts competition in Russia’s International Army Games.
It says that China has installed the radar, targeting navigation guide pod and Russia-made radio reconnaissance pod on the new version of JH-7A. JH-7A’s new avionics system enables it to carry a wider range of weapons. The fighter/bomber is similar to Russian Su-24 frontline static bomber but has 11 weapon cradles, 3 more than Su-24.
Source: mil.huanqiu.com “Russian media: JH-7A’s radar has been replaced by that used in J-10A, better in performance than Su-24” (summary by Chan Kai Yee based on the report in Chinese)
Unlike US alliance with Japan, Australia or the Philippines, there is no treaty of alliance between China and Russia, but the alliance is much stronger that US alliance with its allies.
US has treaty obligations to fight for Japan, Australia and the Philippines but not willingly unless its interests are being hurt; therefore, it does not send its navy to help the Philippines counter Chinese navy in the Scarborough standoff. It just uses the excuse of taking no side in the disputes.
However, the most sad things for the US are that if the US fights a war with either China or Russia, its ally Japan, Australia and the Philippines will provide it with no substantial help as they are neither willing nor able to do so.
China and Russia, however, have no treaty obligations to help each other in a war between the US and either of them, but they will do their best to help each other even join each other to fight the US. If they join force, it is hard for the US to defeat them.
They will do that out of necessity as the US is now doing its best to contain both of them so that they have alliance with each other to resist US containment. If one of them has been subdued by the US, the other will be isolated and easily subdued by the US.
An alliance out of necessity is much stronger than a treaty alliance!
Article by Chan Kai Yee
Failure to ratify the U.S.-led sweeping trade pact TPP would hand China “the keys to the castle” on globalization and do nothing to solve the real problems underlying American anxiety over jobs, the top U.S. trade official said Thursday.
The tariff-slashing Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) has turned into a hot-button topic in the run-up to the Nov. 8 U.S. election, threatening to dampen support from lawmakers needed to pass a deal critics condemn as a job-killer.
U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman said he was still optimistic Congress would pass the 12-member TPP, in part because China has been moving ahead with a trade deal of its own, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), that would boost its exports and let it set labor and environmental standards in the fast-growing Asia Pacific region.
“We’re one vote away from either cementing our leadership in this region and in the global trading system or ceding it to China,” Froman told reporters in Lima after attending the inauguration of Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski.
“At the end of the day I don’t think Congress wants to be responsible for handing the keys to the castle to China.”
Froman’s defense of the TPP follows weeks of heated attacks on the deal as anti-TPP chants and signs have peppered the Republican and Democratic conventions.
Republican nominee Donald Trump has called the TPP a “death blow” for manufacturing jobs and his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton has firmed up her opposition to it in recent days.
Froman declined to comment on the candidates but said the TPP had become a “scapegoat” for legitimate concerns over income inequality, stagnant wages and jobs lost to automation. “You don’t get to vote on the next generation of robots,” he said, “you get to vote on trade agreements”.
But the debate over TPP has also helped broaden support for domestic policies, such as infrastructure development and educational programs, to help Americans adapt to rapid economic change, Froman said.
U.S. President Barack Obama wants the TPP passed this year.
Froman ruled out renegotiating the “carefully balanced” text, but said issues were being solved by working on country implementation plans. He cited pork producers, dairy farmers and financial services as once-reluctant stakeholders that now back the TPP.
“The last major issue outstanding has to do with biologics and intellectual property rights,” Froman said. “We’re having good constructive conversations” with members of Congress.
(Reporting by Mitra Taj; Editing by Alison Williams)
Source: Reuters “Killing TPP would hand China ‘keys to the castle’: U.S. trade representative”
Note: This is Reuters report I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the report’ views.
China and Laos are both committed to a high-speed rail project linking the Chinese southwestern city of Kunming with the Lao capital of Vientiane, officials from both countries said this week, and the project will go ahead despite delays.
The line should eventually stretch through Thailand and Malaysia to Singapore, and is part of an ambitious plan for China to develop infrastructure links across Asia, known as the “One Belt, One Road” project.
Vientiane hosted an elaborate ground-breaking ceremony for the $7-billion project in December, but nearly eight months later, construction has yet to begin in Laos.
Work has been delayed because Laos had yet to complete an environmental and social impact study, said a former deputy prime minister, Somsavat Lengsavad.
“The terms are all concluded, they are not changing,” he told Reuters in an interview at the prime minister’s office in Vientiane. “But the Chinese banks are very strict on us fully complying on the environment and social impact study.”
Somsavat ran the steering panel for the project for Laos until he retired early this year, and still maintains close contact with the ministries involved, he said.
Another issue was land allocation around the line, he added, with some land on the route having been snapped up by investors speculating ahead of government purchases.
“There is no work on the ground,” he said. “It is pending the study, and one of the pending problems is land reallocation.”
Reports that the Lao government was renegotiating the terms because it felt Somsavat had struck a deal that favored China were untrue, he said, adding that China would not get rights to develop land along the route.
China will hold a stake of 70 percent in the joint venture project, and Laos the rest, he said. Initial capital would be around $2.1 billion, with Beijing funding Laos’ contribution of $630 million with a loan at interest below 3 percent, he added.
Another reason for delays was that responsibility for the project had changed hands between ministries in China, he said.
But Beijing has also struggled to make progress in Thailand, as negotiating teams have disagreed on financing, cost and land rights.
“We will continue to push forward the construction of this rail project,” China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi told reporters on the sidelines of a meeting of Southeast Asian nations this week. “It will bring benefit to people from both countries.”
(Additional reporting by Michael Martina; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)
Source: Reuters “China, Laos say rail project to go ahead, pending environment study”
Note: This is Reuters report I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the report’ views.
As far back as on January 28, 2013, I had a post on China’s midcourse ICBM interception tests titled “” stating:
China tested emerging military technology aimed at destroying missiles in mid-air after an initial test in 2010, state media said on Sunday (January 27, 2013), in a move that will unnerve its neighbors.
A brief report by the official Xinhua news agency said the military carried out a “land-based mid-course missile interception test within its territory”.
“The test has reached the pre-set goal,” the report quoted an unnamed Defence Ministry official as saying.
That was China’s second successful midcourse interception test.
I had a post the next day on a Chinese missile expert’s view that in spite of the two successes, China lagged behind the US in midcourse interception technology.
Later, on July 16, 2013 and February 11, 2014, I had two posts respectively titled “China’s Multi-layer Anti-missile System with Copies of Russian Anti-missile radar” and “Bare the Mystery of China’s Anti-Missile Intercept System” on China’s anti-ICBM system.
I have followed China’s development of ICBM interception closely and described China’s third and fourth ICBM interception tests respectively in my posts titled “China’s Third Successful Test of ICBM Interception” on July 24, 2014 and “Suspected 4th Test of China’s Midcourse ICBM Interception” on May 25, 2015.
Reuters says in its report today titled “China says pressing ahead with own anti-missile system”, “China’s Defence Ministry confirmed on Thursday that it was pressing ahead with anti-missile system tests after pictures appeared on state television, amid anger at South Korea’s decision to deploy an advanced U.S. anti-missile system.”
In fact state television showed footage of the tests in its report on the achievements China’s missile interception research team headed by Chen Deming. Chen has been conducting the research for 26 years. The footage in Chinese can be viewed at http://mil.huanqiu.com/china/2016-07/9226370.html.
Mil.huanqiu.com is China’s official military forum where we can find official information about China’s weapon development.
The footage is contained in the website’s report in Chinese titled “China perhaps adopts KKV (kinetic kill vehicle) technology in midcourse ICBM interception, a technology only China and the US master”. I only give a summary of the report and do not translate the footage.
Still the website’s report describes the interception missile in quite details and posts a picture of it. However, there are much more images of the missile in the footage in the report. According to the report, the missile is a three-stage one shorter than its US counterpart and is carried on an eight-wheel cross-country vehicle similar to the launcher vehicle of HQ-9 air defense missiles.
The report says that so far only China, the US and Israel have midcourse ICBM interception systems. Israel has obtained the technology from the US while China has developed its system entirely independently. Its DN series midcourse interception missiles are similar to US GMD the only midcourse ICBM interception system the US has. US Aegis system can only intercept intermediate ballistic missile instead of ICBM.
As for the question whether China made public of its anti-ICBM system in response of the deployment of THAAD, Chinese experts do not think so. They believe it will be better response for China to showcase some attack system such as hypersonic flying vehicle or advanced ballistic missiles.
Source: mil.huanqiu.com “China perhaps adopts KKV (kinetic kill vehicle) technology in midcourse ICBM interception, a technology only China and the US master” (summary by Chan Kai Yee based on the report in Chinese)
Source: Reuters “China says pressing ahead with own anti-missile system”, full text of which can be viewed at http://www.reuters.com/article/us-china-defence-missiles-idUSKCN10812X.
In my post “Details of China’s New Advanced J-11B Fighter Jet”, I give National Interest’s description of China’s advanced J-11B fighter jet in its article titled “China Stole This Fighter From Russia—and It’s Coming to the South China Sea” on July 24. The article first of all tells readers how China has stolen technology from Russia in modernizing its air force.
It begins with the following paragraphs:
The Shenyang J-11 is a Chinese copy of the excellent Russian Sukhoi Su-27 “Flanker” multirole fighter. In fact, it was at first an authorized copy—but Chinese ambitions to adapt it with locally produced technology transformed it into a reverse-engineered headache for Russian industry. In successive variants, the J-11 and the Flanker-derived J-15 and J-16 have been at the forefront of Chinese efforts to produce long-range fourth-generation fighters that can contest the seas around China—if only Chinese engineers can work out the kinks in their domestically produced jet engines.
I’ve written before about the latest version of the Su-27, the Su-35, but let’s review the basics. The Flanker was a late Cold War design that in most respects served as a Russian counterpart to the F-15 Eagle: a “heavy,” but maneuverable, twin-engine multirole fighter that can fly at high speeds across long distances with a heavy missile or bomb load. The early Flanker can pull off even tighter maneuvers than the relatively agile F-15, and originally came with better short-range air-to-air missiles (the R-73); however, it lagged behind later F-15s in terms of sensors, though not nearly as much as its lighter stablemate, the MiG-29 Fulcrum.
All in all, this means the Su-27 was a top shelf fighter in the early nineties, when China became the first country outside of the former Soviet world to operate Flankers: thirty-eight Su-27SKs and forty Su-27UBK two-seat trainers acquired between 1992 and 2000, for between $30 and $40 million apiece. The Su-27SKs came with Russian R-27 and R-73 air-to-air missiles, but had little capability for advanced air-to-ground munitions—though China insisted the Flankers’ landing gear come strengthened so they could accommodate a heavier bomb load.
Post-Soviet Russia was then entering especially tough economic times—some of the Flanker payments were made in food in-kind!—and these sales were away to help keep the economy afloat. China, for its part, had recently lost access to the American and European defense markets following the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre.
However, in 1995 the Chinese said they weren’t interested in buying more finished aircraft from Russia—but would pay for the license to assemble Su-27 kits in China. Russia agreed on the condition that the engines and avionics would still be made in Russia. The deal was struck: two hundred Chinese-made aircraft—now designated J-11s—for $2.5 billion. So far, so legal.
China already had a tradition of producing domestic copies of Soviet tanks and aircraft dating back to the late fifties, when a falling out with the Soviet Union cut it off from foreign arms supplier. Now Russia had figured out a way to get paid for the copies!
Then a funny thing happened: in 2004, having already assembled one hundred aircraft, the Chinese cancelled the remainder of the contract, claiming the Su-27 no longer met their needs—true, in that they wanted fighters with precision-guided munition capabilities.
However, three years later China revealed that Shenyang Aircraft Corporation was producing the J-11B—without any Russian involvement. Though 90 percent of the J-11’s components were indigenously made, the airframe was nearly identical. Beijing had ducked out of paying for the whole contract and reverse-engineered the Flanker. The Russian arms industry was very upset, and growled about intellectual-copyright litigation for several years—but with China accounting for 40 percent of Russian military sales for the first eight years of the century, Russian manufacturers appear not to have retaliated in the end.
Russia did want to punish China for stealing its technology. Russian military industrial circle refused to sell China Russia’s advanced weapons including Su-35 fighter jet and S-400 air defense system. However, I said in my post on March 31, 2013 titled “Sino-Russian Arms Deals Are Political for Cold War Partnership”:
There have been reports that Russian military worries that providing China advanced weapons may threaten Russian security while Russian military industry circle worries that China may steal Russian technology by reverse engineering, but Russian President Putin insists that there should be the arms deals. Why? For the sake of Sino-Russian Cold War partnership against the US.
Now, the weapon trade and joint ventures for production of large aircrafts and helicopters between Russia and China have been proceeding smoothly. It proves that Russia has been financially compensated for the theft as China also attaches great importance to its de facto alliance with Russia.
Previously China sent its navy to the Mediterranean to conduct joint drill with Russia to support Russia’s moves against the US in Europe. Now, Reuters says in its report “China says to hold drills with Russia in South China Sea” today, that Russia is to send its navy to the South China Sea to conduct joint military drill with China to support China’s confrontation with the US.
All such military drills including those carried out by the US in the areas near China are routinely claimed to be not directed at third parties.
Who believes that?
Now, if either of Russia or China is attacked by the US, the other will lender help as it will be greatly weakened without its ally.
Comment by Chan Kai Yee on National Interest’s article and Reuters’ report, which can respectively viewed at http://nationalinterest.org/feature/china-stole-fighter-russia%E2%80%94-its-coming-the-south-china-sea-17087 and http://www.reuters.com/article/us-southchinasea-china-drills-idUSKCN1080O8.
Reuters says in its report today titled “U.S. diplomatic strategy on South China Sea appears to founder”, “In the lead-up to an international court ruling on China’s claims in the South China Sea this month, United States officials talked about rallying a coalition to impose ‘terrible’ costs to Beijing’s international reputation if flouted the court’s decision.
“But just two weeks after the July 12 announcement by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague – which at least on paper, appeared to be a humiliating defeat for China – the U.S. strategy appears to be unraveling and the court’s ruling is in danger of becoming irrelevant.”
Reuters feels sorry as it has been one of the media that has tried hard to make readers believe that Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague (PCA) ruling is legally binding and may cause great damage to China’s reputation.
It has kept on describing PCA as a UN-backed agency in disregard of UN clarification that PCA is not though it is located in the same building as that UN agency the International Court of Justice (ICJ) is located at.
The US, as well as Reuters, lacks the common sense that a country’s historical claims to sovereignty, rights and interests can never be deprived by the ruling of an international court, not even by the ICJ and not even by a UN resolution adopted unanimously by all other nations (in fact, the UN would never have adopted such a stupid resolution).
The ruling can only lead to war as even a small nation cannot accept it. What about a small region that depends on US support for survival such as Taiwan? The ruling denies Taiwan’s right to the exclusive economic zone around its Taiping Island. Taiwan responds by sending warship to patrol the zone it claims to protect its rights.
That means if Philippine navy tries to enforce the ruling on the zone, Taiwan will fight.
China responds even stronger. Its air force begins regular combat patrol of the South China Sea to deal with any provocation caused by the ruling. Chinese air force publishes a photo of China’s H-6K bomber patrolling Huangyan Island (Scarborough Shoal) loaded with anti-ship missiles.
The US, as well as Reuters, is so stupid as to believe that China, if rejects the ruling, will respond by the establishment of an air defense identification zone or reclamation on Scarborough Shoal. No, that is far from being strong enough. In such a dispute, if one side entirely deprives the other side of its claims, the only consequence is war. Even if the other side is weak or defeated in the war, it will retaliate later when it has grown strong.
Now, China is strong enough to conduct combat patrol of the area it claims with its fighter jets, fighters/bombers, strategic bombers, reconnaissance warplanes and aerial tanks. Chinese navy commander has told his US counterpart that Chinese navy is ready to fight to safeguard China’s sovereignty, rights and interests. US threat with the enhanced presence of its navy proves useless
Who will support a ruling that leads to war?
No wonder, Reuters is disappointed in saying, “Yet after the international court rejected Beijing’s position, the U.S. calls for a united front appear to have made little headway, with only six countries joining Washington in insisting that the decision should be binding.”
Before the ruling, Reuters expressed doubt about China’s claim that 70 countries had supported China’s stance in rejecting the ruling and advocating bilateral talks. Like the US, Reuters believed that China’s reputation would have suffered seriously when it has rejected the ruling.
Both the US and Reuters have been surprised that only six countries have taken side with the US.
Why? The ruling goes to the extreme in entirely denying China’s historical rights. It is obviously unfair and biased so that China want to fight a war to protect its rights and few in the world want a war!
There will be no end of wars as proved by the century of wars between France and Germany over their border disputes that involved the whole world.
Chinese leaders are much wiser. They know war cannot bring about long-term solution though China can easily defeat the Philippines now. In spite of Philippines’ attempt to deprive China of all its claims, China has taken the initiative to ask the Philippines to resolve the disputes through bilateral talks.
They are careful not to upset the US so that they ask the US to back the talks.
Anyway, US officials have lost their credibility in predicting in vain the serious damage to China’s reputation. That is not a great problem as long as China does not oppose the presence of US navy in the South China Sea. The US does not lose face as China and ASEAN have concluded an agreement to ensure freedom of navigation, the alleged reason for the presence of US navy instead of containing China.
However, PCA has suffered greatly in its authority, credibility and reputation as its ruling proves it is unfair and biased and it lacks credibility and authority.
The US and the six countries that have taken side with the US will continue to support PCA and submit cases to it for arbitration, but China’s rejection has set a precedent for others to reject PCA ruling.
Comment by Chan Kai Yee on Reuters report, full text of which can be viewed below:
U.S. diplomatic strategy on South China Sea appears to founder
In the lead-up to an international court ruling on China’s claims in the South China Sea this month, United States officials talked about rallying a coalition to impose “terrible” costs to Beijing’s international reputation if flouted the court’s decision.
But just two weeks after the July 12 announcement by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague – which at least on paper, appeared to be a humiliating defeat for China – the U.S. strategy appears to be unraveling and the court’s ruling is in danger of becoming irrelevant.
Earlier this year, U.S. officials spoke repeatedly of the need for countries in the Asia-Pacific region and elsewhere, including the European Union, to make it clear that the decision of the court should be binding.
“We need to be ready to be very loud and vocal, in harmony together … to say that this is international law, this is incredibly important, it is binding on all parties,” Amy Searight, the then-U.S. deputy assistant secretary of defense for South and Southeast Asia, said in February.
Then in April, U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken said China risked “terrible” damage to its reputation if it ignored The Hague’s ruling.
The top lawyer from the Philippines, which brought the case against China, even said Beijing risked “outlaw” status.
The United States had backed Manila’s case on the grounds that China’s claims to 85 percent of the South China Sea, one of the world’s busiest trade routes, were a threat to freedom of navigation and international law.
Yet after the international court rejected Beijing’s position, the U.S. calls for a united front appear to have made little headway, with only six countries joining Washington in insisting that the decision should be binding.
They include the Philippines, but not several other countries with their own claims to parts of the South China Sea that might benefit if Beijing observed the decision.
China also scored a major diplomatic victory earlier this week, when the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) dropped any reference to the ruling from a joint statement at the end of a meeting of the 10-country group’s foreign minister in Laos. This followed objections from Cambodia, Beijing’s closest ASEAN ally.
On July 15, the European Union, distracted after Britain’s vote to leave the bloc, issued a statement taking note of the ruling, but avoiding direct reference to Beijing or any assertion that the decision was binding.
RULING RISKS IRRELEVANCE
On Wednesday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry expressed satisfaction that ASEAN had issued a communique that championed the rule of law and said the omission of any reference to the arbitration case did not detract from its importance.
He also said it was “impossible” for the ruling to become irrelevant because it is legally binding.
But analysts said it now risks exactly that, not least because Washington has failed to press the issue effectively with its friends and allies.
“We should all be worried that this case is going to go down as nothing more than a footnote because its impact was only as strong as the international community was going to make it,” said Greg Poling, a South China Sea expert at Washington’s Center for Strategic and International Studies think-tank.
“And the international community has voted by not saying anything. The consensus seems to be ‘We don’t care. We don’t want to hold China to these standards.'”
Dean Cheng, an expert on China with the Heritage Foundation think-tank, said Washington appeared reluctant to push a tougher line with Beijing – a vital economic partner as well as a strategic rival – with only a few months to go in President Barack Obama’s tenure and a presidential election in November.
“What we have is China pushing very hard into the South China Sea, physically, politically, illegally and diplomatically, and the United States refraining from doing very much at all,” said Cheng.
One reason for the administration’s relative passivity may be its desire to prevent any major escalation of the dispute after the ruling, including further land reclamation by China or the declaration of a new air defense identification zone.
China has so far responded only with sharpened rhetoric, but analysts and officials worry that Beijing might take bolder action after it hosts the Group of 20 meeting of the world’s biggest economies in September.
(Reporting by David Brunnstrom and Matt Spetalnick in Washington and Ben Blanchard in Beijing; editing by G Crosse)
Reuters says in its report titled “U.S. says backs resumption of China-Philippines talks on South China Sea”, that Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi “told his U.S. counterpart that China and ASEAN had agreed the dispute should get back on to the ‘correct’ track of being resolved by direct talks with the parties concerned, according to a foreign ministry statement released on Tuesday” hinting that the arbitration is not the “correct” track and should be disregarded.
The US was not on the “correct” track before Wang said that. Reuter says, “Kerry said earlier that China’s dismissal of the international court ruling is ‘illegitimate’ and has presented a challenge when the international community, including the United States, sees it as legally binding and a matter of law.
Reuters quotes Kerry as saying, “So we still have a task ahead of us … which is to try to work going forward to make sure that we are resolving the issues through diplomacy and the rule of law”. Obviously Kerry want to make China respect the ruling, which is not something for talks between China and the Philippines. That is equivalent to say that the US is to try to work to make sure the issues are resolved through US diplomacy to make China submit to the rule of law, i.e. respect the ruling of the Permanent Court of Arbitration, which Reuters regards as a UN-backed agency but the UN has made clear it is not.
Reuters reported on July 26 that Japan and allies Australia and the United States issued a joint statement calling on both the Philippines and China to abide by the legally binding ruling.
It says in its report the next day, “In an address to foreign ministers, including Kerry, at the gathering in Vientiane, Wang (Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi) criticized the United States, Japan and Australia for a joint statement on the issue they released late on Monday. The statement ‘continued to hype up the South China Sea issue and play up tensions,’ he said. ‘Now is the time we will test whether you are protectors of peace or agitators.’”
Therefore, Wang’s criticism must have upset the US, but after US Secretary of State Kerry had a meeting with Wang, he accepted China and ASEAN’s view to put the ruling aside in spite of the fact that he has had made a joint statement with his Japanese and Australian counterparts to ask China to respect the arbitration ruling.
Reuters quote Wang as saying, China “hopes the United States side takes actual steps to support the resumption of talks between China and the Philippines, and supports the efforts of China and ASEAN to maintain regional peace and stability.”
Urging China to accept the ruling that has angered China and coursed China to show its muscle certainly will not help maintain regional peace and stability.
Therefore, according to Reuters, later Kerry said at a news conference, “The foreign minister (referring to Wang Yi) said the time has come to move away from public tensions and turn the page and we agree with that …”
The US has agreed to move away from public tensions caused mainly by US urging China to respect the ruling.
What has caused US abrupt change in stance?
I am quite interested in that and want to lay bare the secret causes of the change as my blog mainly provide analysis of the wisdom and stupidity in political incidents and events to entertain readers.
First, the US misunderstood China in regarding China as a nation similar to the US that regards saving its face as top priority. However, it has turned out that China regards safeguarding its sovereignty, rights and interests as its first priority though it has made great diplomatic efforts to prevent its reputation from being damaged by its rejection of the ruling. In fact, even if all nations in the world (that is certainly not the case now as only a few countries has so far sided with the US in urging China to respect the ruling), China will not respect the ruling and will fight to safeguard its sovereignty, rights and interests.
Such is certainly not the case with the US. The US has lost its war in Vietnam but would not withdraw its force for fear of losing face. It had made great efforts to obtain an agreement for a withdrawal without losing face but lost face entirely as when it had left, South Vietnam was entirely taken over by North Vietnam.
It is the same with US invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan. The US had no hope to win but refused to withdraw and wanted to establish an impossible democracy there to give the impression that it is the winner. As a result, it has given rise to ISIS by its invasion of Iraq and made Taliban revive due to its unpopular prolonged stay in Afghanistan. It has withdrawn its troops from Iraq, but has been forced to send its air force and special force back there.
Knowing that, China is wise in helping the US save face. Before US change of its stance, Wang Yi has concluded an agreement with ASEAN that ensures freedom of navigation and flyover in the South China Sea. Previously, a high-ranking Chinese admiral Sun Jianguo, deputy chief of PLA general staff, was so stupid as to give the warning that freedom of navigation operation will end in disasters. That is utterly unacceptable to the US.
I will tell how stupid the US is in advocating and China is in opposing freedom of navigation in my next article.
The US has sent its navy to the South China Sea to pressure China to accept the ruling, but it could not make public that true intention in making China give up its claim to benefit the Philippines as it has repeatedly alleged that it does not take side in the disputes between China and other claimants in the South China Sea. Its public explanation of its naval operations is to uphold freedom of navigation and flyover not only for the US but for all other nations as the US is world leader.
In my next post, I will elaborate on how stupid the US is in persisting in advocating freedom of navigation and how stupid China is in opposing such freedom.
Another secret that has already been very clear to people who have followed the developments in the South East Sea closely, that is the US will never fight for Philippines’ interests.
Some people may think that the US is afraid of China when it shows muscle. That is utterly untrue. The US has never had any intention to fight for Philippines’ interest in the first place since the Philippines drove US troops away from US military bases there though it remains Philippines’ ally.
The US gave priority to liberating the Philippines from Japanese occupation and lots of US boys were killed and wounded in the battles there during World War II, but has got in return of the humiliation in being driven away from the Philippines.
Even if American political leaders are stupid enough to make the decision to fight for Philippines’ interests, American people will not support.
The Philippines perhaps thought that it was wise to exploit US desire to contain China to make the US military fight for it to get from China what the Philippines itself cannot get.
The US, however, exploits Philippines’ attempt to exploit the US in making the Philippines submit the arbitration to hurt China’s reputation but is disappointed that the arbitration ruling has no such effect.
The above secrets are quite obvious though they are my speculation while the third secret that I am going to lay bare may be entirely a groundless speculation but is still reasonable given the facts.
It is that China has threatened to take by force all the islands and reefs occupied by the Philippines but claimed by China if the Philippines refuses to talk but insists on enforcing the ruling that China has rejected.
That will be a normal response: If you want to deprive me all I claim, then I will deprive you of all you claim. Normal retaliation!
What shall the US do if China really acts that way? Fight for the Philippines to keep its occupation of those rocks? It will be a waste of US resources and even its people’s blood to help an ungrateful nation. However, the US will lose its credibility if it fails to support its ally militarily.
I believe only when Wang Yi has told Kerry China’s secret plan to take back by force the islands and reefs occupied by the Philippines but claimed by China can China force Kerry to change his stance so abruptly.
Comment by Chan Kai Yee on Reuters’ reports.
Reuters reports “U.S. says backs resumption of China-Philippines talks on South China Sea”, “Diplomatic win for China as ASEAN drops reference to maritime court ruling” and “Cambodia says urged ASEAN to avoid words that would ‘escalate tension’” at http://www.reuters.com/article/us-southchinasea-ruling-china-idUSKCN10604M, http://www.reuters.com/article/us-southchinasea-ruling-asean-idUSKCN1050F6 and http://www.reuters.com/article/us-cambodia-asean-idUSKCN1071PD