Britain Raises Tensions in the South China Sea

By Patrick Brogan

Reuters report that Britain is planning to send a warship to the South China Sea. This follows on from their joint Japanese operation involving four fighter jets. The South China Sea has seen much tension in the past few years.

The aquatic region is surrounded by Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, Vietnam and China and is an important economic region in Asia. It is one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world and is rich in oil and gas. China recently discovered Methane Clathrate here and some have described this as a game changer in the field of energy production. Many neighbouring countries feel China has encroached on their territory in the pursuit of resources.

President Trump has seen this as a contentious area in China before and since coming to power. The Chinese ‘captured’ a US underwater drone in the region late last year. The Americans claimed it was a non-military vehicle. This is on top of Trump’s proposed trade war against China and other allegations he made against them.

However, Trump is only following on from what his predecessor did. The Asia-Pacific Pivot as it’s known was an alliance between the US and Australia and was designed to counter Japanese aggression. This loose military alliance still exists, but the target has changed. It is directed at China now.

When Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State in the Obama administration, she mentioned its significance and said “We liberated it, we defended it.[…]And we could call it the American Sea, and it could go from the West Coast of California all the way to the Philippines!” courtesy of the Corbett Report. So, as NATO closes in on Russia on one side, the Americans and her proxies are doing the same to China on the other.

As what always seems to happen when the Americans are sabre rattling, the media joins in and it too is critical of China’s claims to this body of water and this reached a ridiculous low when it was suggested the name of the sea should be changed. The media all too willingly playing its part in trying to neuter China.

 

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