In snub, U.S. won’t send warships or senior officials to Chinese Navy’s 70th anniversary celebrations

Jesse JohnsonJapan Times, Tokyo The United States has decided not to send warships or senior military officers to celebrations marking the 70th anniversary of the founding of China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy later this month, a snub by Washington even as U.S. allies Japan and South Korea are expected to send their own vessels and officials. Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Dave Eastburn told The Japan Times on Friday that the U.S. Embassy in Beijing’s defense attache office would instead represent the United States at the fleet review and a symposium…

US voices ‘concern’ over Chinese activities in disputed waters

BANGKOK — The presence of large numbers of Chinese vessels near islands and islets occupied by the Philippines is “a concern,” a senior U.S. defense official said Friday. The Philippine government protested the Chinese ship movements Thursday after its military monitored more than 200 Chinese vessels from January-March in a disputed area named Sandy Cay, which is near the Philippine-occupied island of Pag-asa. Asked about the situation while on a visit to Bangkok, Joseph Felter, deputy assistant secretary of defense for South and Southeast Asia, told reporters that the U.S.…

Spy chief Nick Warner on the security threats facing Australia, from terrorism to North Korea – RN

Posted April 06, 2019 06:00:00 Photo: Spy chief Nick Warner says there’s a “delicate balance” between civil liberties and security. (AAP: Alan Porritt) The list of security threats to Australia is “almost endless” and greater than ever before. That’s the view of spy chief Nick Warner, who says a rapidly evolving security environment is creating a unique set of challenges. “Australia is facing some of the most challenging strategic circumstances that it has for decades,” Mr Warner told RN’s Geraldine Doogue in a rare interview. “The world is more complex…

Trump: US-China trade deal could be reached in weeks – UNTV News

(L-R) President Rodrigo Duterte, Pag-asa Island and Chinese President Xi Jinping MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte has told China to back off from the Pag-asa Island amid reports that hundreds of Chinese vessels have “swarmed” the island, also known as Thitu, in the West Philippine Sea. Speaking at PDP-Laban’s campaign rally in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan on Thursday night, Duterte said he will not allow China to occupy Pag-asa Island, which has long been held by Manila. “I assure you, unless China wants a war with us, eh ‘di…

US, Chinese Bombers Soar Over Pacific Amid Ramped-Up Military Drills

B-52 bombers from Guam have trained with Air Self-Defense Force and Okinawa-based U.S. fighter jets in the Western Pacific, just days after China sent a total of six bombers and other aircraft through a key entryway into the Pacific for their own military exercises. “Two B-52H Stratofortress bombers took off from Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, and conducted integrated training with Koku-Jieitai (Japan Air-Self Defense Force) fighters and 18th Wing F-15s from Kadena Air Base, Japan, in the vicinity of Western Japan” on Thursday, U.S. Air Force spokeswoman Monica Urias…

G-7 diplomats expected to voice concern on China human rights

DINARD, France — Foreign ministers from seven leading industrialized nations will likely express concern about human rights problems in China in a joint statement after their meeting here, in light of charges related to the ongoing repression of ethnic minorities. The statement by Group of Seven diplomats will also voice opposition to large-scale Chinese island-building in the South China Sea, on the grounds that it is raising regional tensions, and include a rejection of unfair economic practices such as intellectual property violations. France, as the host nation, is playing a central role…

Navy Amphib Sails Through South China Sea with a Bunch of F-35s Aboard

The Navy and Marine Corps appear to be testing a concept that would turn an amphibious assault ship into a mini-aircraft carrier — and they did so while sailing through the contentious South China Sea. The amphibious assault ship Wasp made its way to the Philippines last weekend with at least 10 F-35B Joint Strike Fighter jets aboard. That’s nearly twice as many F-35s than typically deploy with amphibs. Navy photos show that four MV-22B Osprey tiltrotor aircraft were also on the Wasp. The National Interest was the first to…

4 out of 10 Filipinos don’t believe China’s ‘good’ intentions: SWS

A child holds national flags of China and the Philippines before President Rodrigo Duterte and China President Xi Jinping attend a welcome ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, October 20, 2016. Thomas Peter, Reuters/File MANILA- Four out of 10 Filipinos don’t believe that China’s intentions for the Philippines are good for its people, results of a Social Weather Stations survey (SWS) released Friday showed. The survey, conducted in December 2018, found that 44 percent of Filipino adults disagreed with the statement: “Most of what the…

Internal strife: NATO’s greatest enemy is itself as it turns 70 ǀ View

NATO’s first Secretary General, Lord Hastings Ismay, famously said the alliance’s purpose was “to keep the Russians out, the Americans in and the Germans down.” As the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation celebrates its 70th birthday, it is still keeping the Russians at bay. But keeping the Americans in has become more of a challenge as Washington becomes more preoccupied with the challenge from China. And the alliance is more concerned now about getting Germany’s defence budget up than keeping it down. A deterioration in relations with Turkey also threatens to…