The Cold War between the US and 2.0 Russia is far from being defused, the last thing the world needs is certainly a reincarnation of the falcon Donald Rumsfeld.
Instead, we are entitled to a known-known predictable in the person of the Supreme Pentagon chief Ash Carter.
Ash the neocon made quite a show at the Shangri-la Dialogue last weekend in Singapore.
Beijing is working to fill work nine artificial islands in the South China Sea, seven in the Spratlys Islands and two in the Paracels islands. Ash flatly demanded Beijing immediate and lasting cessation of expansion, judging that his behavior was not in line with international rules, then leave Singapore flying over the Straits of Malacca on board a V-22 Osprey.
Washington never ceases to remind the world that freedom of navigation in the Strait of Malacca (where China imports galore energy resources) is guaranteed by the US Navy.As
After Shangri-la, the US President Barack Obama felt the need to take the ball stressing that China should respect the rules and stop playing elbows, while acknowledging that some of their claims may be legitimate. And what else? Be a power in the Pacific gives you the right to vote on everything!
Putting into perspective the whole situation, the Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Hsien Loong has at least tried to put a good stating that the Pacific Ocean was large enough for both Washington and Beijing.
So here we are brought back into a two square kilometers area formed by rocks, islets and atolls surrounded by 150,000 square kilometers of water (literally) disorder, thousands of kilometers of the eastern coast of China.
Beijing claims to exercise an undisputed sovereignty over at least 80% of the South China Sea. The issue in question is not limited to unexplored oil and gas reserves estimated at at least 5000 billion. The area is in fact in the middle of a hyper busy waterway of crucial importance for the world economy, for which the countries of Europe and the Middle East as well as China, Japan, South Korea and many of the member countries of ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) are transit trade of energy and a myriad of other products.
The end of inadmissibility of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs sent to Ash Carter was quite detailed. The essential point is that the South China Sea guideline should be (in fact, it will be) traded between China and ASEAN, which everyone knows in Southeast Asia.
The decisive factor is that in how Beijing sees it, all this has nothing to do with the USA.
Talk to the neocons of the caliber of Ash. The unfeigned fear of neocons is that Chinese aggression transforms these waters Mare Nostrum of the People's Republic of China. Is that since the end of World War II and the Japanese surrender, Pacific Power has appropriated the title of Lord of the Pacific, from Asia to California. It is easy to see that things will end badly, because the new determination shown by China to assert itself could spell the end of the hegemonic power.
What will Ash? If he is true to his word when he says that the US wants to remain the main military power in East Asia in the coming decades, it will send a naval fleet to block a large section of the Chinese east coast. Do not you hear the ticking bomb ticking geopolitics in the South China Sea?
Warning! Land reclamation
In South China Sea we have Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan who oppose China. In the East China Sea is Japan, Taiwan and South Korea who oppose the same China. Beijing swear that there is no air defense identification zone in the South China Sea planned at this time because the conditions do not permit. Let us remember that after the announcement of such a zone in the East China Sea at the end of 2013, the Pentagon sent a few B-52 a wander. The tension was and is (relatively) low (so far).
The notion that China is an evil dragon about to engulf all the minions around does not hold water. Long before the commander of the Pacific Fleet, Admiral Harry Harris, would complain of building a great wall of sand in the South China Sea, other regional players were far from being mere spectators amorphous .
For years, China (and Brunei) had no airstrip in the South China Sea. The Philippines have one on Thitu island. Vietnam is one, plus a heliport, at Truong Sa Malaysia is one of the Shallow reef, where many military aircraft are located. Taiwan has a military airport on the island of Taiping.
Beijing could surely use artificial islands to deploy to any aerial and naval hardware. But China is not the only one to perform fill work. Vietnam is the same on two atolls in the Spratlys.
For its part, Washington gained access to eight bases in the Philippines, including the naval base of Carlito Cunanan, which is the heart of the action in the South China Sea. Manila, which is the weakest link in the region, put on a two-pronged strategy: the unconditional support of Washington and the internationalization of everything concerning the South China Sea.
For its part, Taiwan is busy investing in its stealth missile corvette; ultra-mobile, heavily armed, and which requires little maintenance.
There is also the commander of the Seventh Fleet of the USA, Vice Admiral Robert Thomas, who welcomes the active role played by the Japanese not only in the East China Sea, but also between the Pacific and the Indian Ocean.
We must not delude ourselves, Washington authorizes the remilitarization of Japan. The time is therefore ripe to monitor closely what happens in South and East China Sea, including any dangerous pretext casus belli between the declining hegemonic power and resurgent power that has stopped playing low profile.
A version of Cold War Won Ton, it would please you?
The stage is set for an extremely dangerous game. For Beijing, expansion between the Spratlys and Paracels would allow it to exceed the geographical limits of Southeast Asia, hoping to expand its power in the Indian Ocean to Asia South West.
For Washington, it comes to sow pitfalls on the maritime Silk Road borrows Beijing to import, through the Strait of Malacca and the South China Sea, not less than 82% of its oil and 30% of its natural gas.
Expect many arrogant homilies about Washington's duty to protect the freedom of navigation and incessant condemnations of Chinese aggression , all in counterpoint to the expansion of the New Silk Roads, Nova Bank development created by the BRICS and the Asian Investment Bank for infrastructure led by China, which has in its board other BRICS countries as well as Germany and other European countries, all as vectors of a multi-component strategy that undermines the hegemony of the US dollar.
Gone are the early days of the reign of Obama, when Kissinger and Dr. Zbig- grand chessboard -Brzezinski proposed a special relationship between the US and China, a kind of G-2 unbalanced facto under the control of exceptionalist hegemonic power. Beijing might well beware. Today, the Obama administration has returned to its default mode, which is containment. Ash Carter only push things a little further.
Besides the Cold War 2.0 is far from being defused, we are now dealing with a Cold War version of soy sauce or Won Ton. The neocons US had better beware because indigestion giant shrimp lurks.
Dark reminiscence - Prelude to the Pacific War: 1941 was the year of the escalation between the US and Japan ... Following the refusal of Japan to withdraw from Indochina and China, excluding Manchukuo , the United States, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands decreed from July 26, 1941 the complete embargo on oil and steel as well as the freezing of Japanese assets on US soil .
Last edited by max steel on Mon 08 Jun 2015, 22:26; edited 2 times in total