The Balance of Military Power Between America and China

The defining character of the Sino-U.S. relationship has, for decades now, been based on a gradual transition of power. Beijing recognized this early on, but a lot of powerful people in Washington didn’t realize what was happening until relatively recently-a bit late in the process. They had believed that the bilateral relationship was primarily about commerce. Now that it is apparent what the relationship really is about – the slow devolution of power away from Washington and toward Beijing – it is having a profound impact on how the two…

Would China Dare Sink 2 U.S. Aircraft Carriers in the South China Sea?

Key Point: Some Chinese leaders believe America is too weak to fight. Admiral Lou Yuan is China’s Curtis LeMay. LeMay, the U.S. Air Force general who torched Japanese cities and later headed Strategic Air Command, was notorious for his bellicosity. In the 1950s and during the Cuban Missile Crisis, he tried to get the U.S. to launch a nuclear first strike against the Soviet Union: during the Vietnam War, he urged bombing North Vietnam “back to the Stone Age.” Now comes Lou Yuan, deputy chief of the Chinese Academy of…

Commentary: Keeping Chinese fishing vessels from Natuna, defending people’s welfare – Tue, January 7 2020

The latest incidents in the North Natuna Sea should serve as another wake-up call for the government to immediately and expediently improve the country’s naval and other related capabilities to safeguard the sovereign rights of the nation, particularly on the southern fringe of South China Sea. Still fresh in our minds is the skirmish between warship KRI Imam Bonjol and a Chinese fishing vessel in 2016, after which President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo held a meeting on board the warship to assert Indonesia’s rights in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). An…

Photos: I sailed on a cargo ship from Malaysia to Hong Kong

A voyage aboard a cargo ship can be the adventure of a lifetime. A number of shipping companies now offer passenger berths, and a number of specialized travel agencies can arrange trips aboard cargo ships. Some cargo ships, like the CMA CGM Amerigo Vespucci that I traveled on, are far more luxurious than some people might assume, with rooms on par with cruise ships or hotels and amenities including a library, gym, and gourmet meals served by a French-trained chef. Booking through a company called Freighter Travel, I sailed aboard…

Water Wars: Stare Decisis in the South China Sea

On Dec. 12, Malaysia further delineated the limits of its extended continental shelf, directly challenging Chinese claims in the South China Sea. Malaysia submitted information to the UN Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf that expressed its rights to an extended continental shelf beyond 200 nautical miles. In accordance with the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), Malaysia first submitted information to the Commission on an extended continental shelf in the South China Sea in 2009, when it jointly filed with Vietnam. Malaysia’s new submission…

Japan, Vietnam vow to uphold rule of law in South China Sea

Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi and his Vietnamese counterpart Pham Binh Minh on Monday underscored the importance of maintaining freedom of navigation and the rule of law in the South China Sea, taking aim at China’s militarization of outposts in disputed areas of the sea. In a meeting in Hanoi, Motegi and Minh also agreed to coordinate Japan’s push for a free and open Indo-Pacific with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations’ efforts to promote stable growth in the region, according to Japan’s Foreign Ministry. Motegi stressed that Japan has…

Japan and Vietnam vow to uphold rule of law in South China Sea

HANOI (Kyodo) — Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi and his Vietnamese counterpart Pham Binh Minh on Monday underscored the importance of maintaining freedom of navigation and the rule of law in the South China Sea, taking aim at China’s militarization of outposts in disputed areas of the sea. In a meeting in Hanoi, Motegi and Minh also agreed to coordinate Japan’s push for a free and open Indo-Pacific with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations’ efforts to promote stable growth in the region, according to Japan’s Foreign Ministry. Motegi stressed…

South China Sea: Indonesia stands firm against Chinese claims in South China Sea region

NEW DELHI: South China Sea (SCS) could become a flashpoint between China and Indonesia, South East Asia’s biggest nation but with no claim in SCS region. Jakarta has reacted firmly to Chinese claims. Indonesia recently rejected China’s claims over a disputed part of the South China Sea as “having no legal basis”. It also protested to Beijing over the presence of a Chinese coastguard vessel in its territorial waters. A Chinese boat trespassed into Indonesia’s exclusive economic zone off the coast of the northern islands of Natuna, leading Indonesians officials…