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Thread: Will the US defend Philippines if China attacks?

  1. #11
    PH backs rearmed Japan to ‘balance’ China

    Agence France-Presse

    3:17 pm | Monday, December 10th, 2012

    MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines would support Japan dropping its pacifist constitution to become a fully-fledged military force and act as a balance against a rising China, a government spokesman said Monday.

    In an interview with the Financial Times, Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario said the Philippines would strongly support a rearmed Japan – its World War II foe – as a counterweight to what it sees as Chinese provocation.

    “We are looking for balancing factors in the region and Japan could be a significant balancing factor,” he told the paper amid growing tensions over the South China Sea, almost all of which is claimed by China.

    Foreign department spokesman Raul Hernandez confirmed the government’s view that Japan should upgrade its military from a self-defense force so that it has more freedom to operate in the region.

    “(Del Rosario) said we are in favor of Japan’s gaining strength,” Hernandez told AFP.

    Japan occupied the Philippines for more than three years from December 1941, during which suspected guerrillas were tortured and executed, and some local women forced into prostitution to serve the occupying army.

    The war claimed at least a million civilian Philippine lives, according to historians.

    The newspaper interview come shortly before a general election in Japan where the front-runner, opposition leader Shinzo Abe, has said he wants to revise the country’s pacifist constitution, imposed by the US after the war.

    China claims most of the South China Sea, including waters close to the shores of its neighbours. These areas include major sea lanes and are believed to hold vast mineral and oil resources.

    China’s claim is contested by the Philippines as well as Brunei, Malaysia, Taiwan and Vietnam, which have overlapping claims to some or all of those same areas.

    In April, Chinese patrol vessels prevented the Philippine Navy from arresting a group of Chinese fishermen at the Scarborough Shoal, which is close to the main Philippine island of Luzon and which Manila says is part of its territory.

    Manila says China has continued to station patrol vessels in the area even after the Philippines withdrew its vessels and called for a peaceful resolution to the dispute according to international law.

    Earlier this month, the Philippines asked China to clarify press reports Chinese authorities had authorised its forces to interdict ships entering what Beijing considers its territorial waters.

    China and Japan are also in dispute over islands in the East China Sea that are controlled by Tokyo.

  2. #12
    Chinese sea patrol alarms PH

    By Tarra Quismundo

    Philippine Daily Inquirer

    12:18 am | Friday, December 28th, 2012

    China on Thursday sent its first patrol vessel to disputed parts of the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea) ahead of the enforcement of new rules that authorized Chinese border police to board, search and expel foreign vessels from waters Beijing considers its territory.

    The state-run Xinhua news agency reported that the patrol ship Haixun 21 sailed into the high seas Thursday under the administration of the Maritime Safety Administration of Hainan province, from which China administers the West Philippine Sea.

    The Philippines said it would verify the report.

    If the report proves correct, the Philippines will ask the Chinese why they are “patrolling and in what areas,” Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario said.

    Del Rosario said the Philippines was also verifying reports that China was investing $1.6 billion to fortify and develop islands involved in territorial disputes with Southeast Asian nations in the West Philippine Sea.

    Hainan province announced in late November new rules that authorized Chinese border patrols to board, search and expel foreign vessels from waters in the West Philippine Sea claimed by China.

    Freedom of navigation

    The new rules will come into effect on Jan. 1, but Southeast Asian nations and the United States have asked China for clarification on the purpose and extent of the new rules.

    The United States has taken a neutral stance on its Southeast Asian allies’ territorial disputes with China, but it has made clear that it has a “national interest” in freedom of navigation in the West Philippine Sea, home to sea-lanes where a third of global trade passes and to islands, reefs and atolls believed to be sitting on vast gas and oil reserves.

    Del Rosario said China had yet to respond to the Philippines’ request for clarification of the new maritime rules.

    China claims almost the entire West Philippine Sea, but the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia and Vietnam claim parts of the sea within their exclusive economic zones. Taiwan also claims some islands in the sea.

    The Philippines and Vietnam are the more strident claimants, pressing for the resolution of their claims according to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and for a code of conduct in the sea to prevent the conflicting claims from erupting into armed clashes.

    Fortifying Sansha

    On Wednesday the financial news agency Bloomberg reported that China was investing $1.6 billion to build infrastructure, including air and sea ports, in Sansha City, a garrison town built by China on Woody Island, in the Paracels, claimed by Vietnam.

    China established Sansha City in June to govern the Paracel and Spratly islands and the Panatag Shoal (Scarborough Shoal), where Chinese and Philippine ships faced off with each other from early April to mid-June.

    Vietnam and the Philippines protested the establishment of Sansha City, calling it a violation of international law.

    Manila said it was “unacceptable” for a Chinese city to hold administrative control over territories within the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone.

    Instead of responding to the protests, China, through Hainan, announced the new maritime rules.

    In its report Thursday, Xinhua quoted Ruan Ruiwen, head of the Hainan Maritime Safety Administration, as saying that the Haixun 21’s departure for the South China Sea marked the beginning of Chinese sailing beyond coastal waters.

    “In the past, Hainan provincial maritime law enforcement entities could only cover coastal waters and never reached the high seas. The newly enlisted Haixun 21 ends the history of no large oceangoing patrol vessels in South China Sea,” Ruan said.

    Maritime safety

    Xinhua also quoted Huang He, deputy head of the maritime bureau of China’s Ministry of Transport, as saying that the vessel “will monitor maritime traffic safety, investigate maritime accidents, detect pollution, carry out search and rescue work, and fulfill international conventions.”

    The report said the ship could sail without refueling for up to 7,200 kilometers, roughly the same distance between the Philippines and Australia.

    Chinese media criticized China’s rivals for territory in the West Philippine Sea for “provocations” and justified China’s decision to fortify Sansha and upgrade its naval forces.

    Del Rosario said the Philippine Embassy in Beijing was verifying reports of the Chinese investment.

    If the reports are true, Del Rosario said, China would violate the Declaration of Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea that it signed with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in 2002.

    The declaration aims to deter use of force and instead promote peace and self-restraint among countries claiming territory in the sea.

    “We have officially asked for clarification from the Chinese Embassy in Manila and as well asked our Beijing post to directly contact their [Chinese] foreign ministry. Until now we are still awaiting an official response,” Del Rosario said.

    China’s Global Times and China Daily insisted that China had the right to secure its sovereignty over the islands claimed by the Philippines and Vietnam in the West Philippine Sea and by Japan in the East China Sea.


    The two newspapers called the Philippines’ and Vietnam’s protests against China moves in the sea “provocations.”

    Global Times opinion writer Yu Jincui said in an article published Thursday that China’s plan to develop Sansha City was aimed at bolstering the country’s southern maritime defense.

    Yu said the development of Sansha City was China’s response to “provocations” from the Philippines and Vietnam.

    China Daily said China’s efforts to upgrade its Navy should not set off alarm bells in the region.

    The paper cited “provocations” from the Philippines and Japan as justification for China’s bulking up its naval muscles.

    Other countries should not “read too much into China’s efforts to build itself into a maritime power,” the paper said.

    “China does not seek hegemony. It will not pose a threat to others. Its resolve to enhance its defense forces only serves its need to cultivate a good security environment for its peaceful development,” the paper said.

  3. #13
    The US will be put in a difficult situation if (God forbid) this happens. They're going to protect us as stated in the MDA and at the same time they'll go up against a country whom they owe a lot in debt.

  4. #14
    Subic military base buildup vital to DND, US

    5:28 am | Friday, October 12th, 2012

    Going on in the Philippines, which has a mutual defense treaty with the United States, are joint exercises between US and Philippine marines, and the venue is exactly where the DND plans to build a base that a spokesperson for the department says is vital to the country’s security program.

    CITY OF SAN FERNANDO—The plan of the Department of National Defense (DND) to develop a military base inside the Subic free port is a critical part of the country’s national security program, a defense official said.

    It is also critical to the United States’ plan to “pivot” to Asia, a new military strategy that will see 60 percent of US warships shifting to the region by the end of the decade.

    The planned shift, announced earlier this year, has drawn sharp criticism from Beijing, which sees it as a strategy to contain China, an emerging military power whose increasing aggressiveness in asserting its claims in Southeast Asian waters is causing worries in the region.

    While Washington has sought to assure Beijing that the strategy is not intended to box in China, the United States has proceeded to conclude agreements with Singapore and Australia that will allow shelter for US war groups in the region.

    The United States also conducts regular joint military maneuvers with Asian countries, often billed as civil-military exercises for disaster preparedness.

    Going on in the Philippines, which has a mutual defense treaty with the United States, are joint exercises between US and Philippine marines, and the venue is exactly where the DND plans to build a base that a spokesperson for the department says is vital to the country’s security program.

    AFP modernization

    “The Armed Forces [of the Philippines] is modernizing in a very aggressive [way],” Peter Paul Galvez, DND spokesperson, told the Philippine Daily Inquirer by phone on Wednesday.

    “In a few months, we are embarking in procurement and we intend to use those areas in Subic for our air platform and naval assets,” Galvez said.

    “We have a big interest in the area,” he said, referring to the 200-hectare airport complex in the Subic free port, a former US naval base at the boundary between Zambales and Bataan provinces.

    Officials of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) earlier announced that the agency wanted to convert the idle Subic Bay International Airport (SBIA) into a tourism and commercial hub, like Sentosa Island in Singapore.

    Part of modernization

    But SBMA Chairman Roberto Garcia later said the plan would not proceed because the DND wanted to use the airport as a military base.

    The DND, Galvez said, has asked Congress to approve P75 billion for the modernization of the military in five years.

    Part of the modernization program is a plan that calls for the Philippine Air Force (PAF) to use SBIA at Cubi Point and the adjacent seaport, Galvez said.

    The US Navy built the airport during the Korean War in the 1950s. It left Subic in November 1991, two months after the Philippine Senate rejected the extension of the Philippine-US military bases agreement.

    The Philippine government, through the SBMA, converted Subic into a special economic zone and free port.

    Galvez said discussions with the SBMA had not yet touched on leases.

    “These are really needed, really perfect. These are very ideal. It is cheaper to locate [in Subic] than replicate [the facilities] elsewhere,” Galvez said.

    “Subic can handle large aircraft. It has a deep sea,” he added.

    SBMA understands

    Asked if the SBMA resisted the DND plan, Galvez replied, “They understand.”

    “Having a military base in Subic is good for everyone there. It will support economic growth,” he said. “It is strategic for all. We are intently looking at it. We need the facilities.”

    Galvez said the military had retained Air Force units at the free port in Clark, Pampanga province.

    The Air Force units at the 300-hectare Air Force City in Clark are the First Air Division, 600th Air Base Wing, Air Logistic Command, Air Reserve Command, 710th Special Operations Wing and 410th Maintenance Wing.

    In exchange for the lease, the Air Force helps secure the international airport and aviation areas in the free port at Clark.

    Galvez said he had no information yet on which units would move to Subic. There is no schedule yet for the construction of the military base there, he added.

    Not aimed at China

    Aware of the potential repercussions of the plan, Galvez said the base was not part of efforts to beef up the capability of the Philippines to deal with China’s aggressiveness in asserting its territorial claims in the West Philippine Sea.

    China’s insistence that it owns the entire sea has led to a face-off between Philippine and Chinese ships at Panatag Shoal (Scarborough Shoal) from early April to mid-June, about the time US officials were going around the region explaining the new US military strategy.

    But the plan to build a military base in Subic, Galvez said, has been existing since the 1990s. “It got waylaid for lack of funding,” he said.

    “Our country needed strategic sites to monitor [our seas] and land, and these sites have national security implications,” he said.

    The development of the new military base does not include engaging the US military for its use or even for shared use, he said.

    Should troops from the United States or Australia use the Air Force facilities in Subic, this would be covered by the Visiting Forces Agreement with those countries, he said.

  5. #15
    2 US warships to dock in PH

    By Frances Mangosing

    5:28 pm | Friday, December 28th, 2012

    MANILA, Philippines–Two US warships will dock in Philippine waters on Saturday for a routine port call, the United States Embassy said on Friday.

    The USS Gridley (DDG-101), an Arleigh-Burke Class Destroyer which forms part of the US Pacific Fleet, will dock in Cebu.

    The ship, named for Captain Charles Gridley, Commander of the USS Olympia who was famously told by Admiral George Dewey to “fire when you are ready, Gridley” in the Battle of Manila Bay during Spanish-American War, is homeported in San Diego, California.

    The USS Gridley also docked in Manila Bay last month.

    Meanwhile, USS Bremerton (SSN 69, a submarine of Los Angeles class design, will also make a port call in Subic.

    She was named in honor of the city of Bremerton in Washington, home to Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and a city with a long association with the US Navy. She is the tenth ship of the Los Angeles class design, and her keel was laid in Connecticut in May 1976.

    Both port calls emphasize the “strong historic, community, and military connections between the United States and the Republic of the Philippines.” It will allow the ships to replenish supplies as well as give the crew an opportunity for rest and relaxation, the US Embassy added in a statement.

    Earlier this year, the US signified its intention to boost its presence in the Pacific by deploying a majority of its naval assets by 2020. Amid rising tensions between China and other Asian countries including the Philippines over the disputed Spratly Islands, the US said the deployment of their assets was not meant to challenge China.

  6. #16
    Aquino alleges China harassed Philippines boats

    AFP News – Sun, Jan 27, 2013

    President Benigno Aquino has accused China of harassing two Philippine fishing boats in disputed South China Sea waters, allegedly driving out one that had sheltered from rough seas.

    Speaking on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Switzerland, Aquino said the two Scarborough Shoal incidents had led to Manila seeking United Nations arbitration this week over the territorial dispute.

    Aquino, who did not say when the incidents occurred, said "Chinese vessels" approached to within nine metres (10 yards) of a Filipino fishing boat near the shoal.

    "While they (Chinese vessels) were approaching, their horns were supposedly blaring at full blast, causing apprehension to our fishing vessel," he said, according to a transcript released by the government on Saturday.

    A second Filipino boat was driven out by Chinese vessels shortly after it took shelter near the shoal, he added.

    "According to the affidavit (crew's depositions), they were told to go back to the rough waters."

    The shoal, located closer to the Philippine island of Luzon than the Chinese mainland, has been a source of friction since April last year when Chinese vessels stopped the Philippine navy from arresting alleged Chinese poachers.

    Aquino, saying only that the incidents were the latest in a series of assertive Chinese actions in the area, stressed the Scarborough Shoal -- which Manila calls "Bajo de Masinloc" and China calls "Huangyan island" -- and its surrounding waters are part of the Philippines' "exclusive economic zone".

    China claims most of the South China Sea, including waters and islands close to the shores of its neighbours.

    Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario however this week said Manila had taken China to a UN tribunal to challenge its claim to most of the sea, including territory belonging to the archipelago, and would ask the arbitration panel to declare Chinese claims in the area invalid.

    Aquino said he could not allow China to claim "effective control over Bajo de Masinloc by ordering our vessels out", as this could encourage Beijing to move into the Philippine-claimed and allegedly resource-rich Reed Bank.

    "We are not threatening anybody, but if we don't stand up for our rights, who do we expect will be standing up for our rights?" Aquino said.

    China's embassy spokesmen could not be reached for comment Saturday.

  7. #17
    US lawmakers back PH move in UN

    By Tarra Quismundo

    Philippine Daily Inquirer

    3:51 am | Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

    Visiting United States lawmakers are “very supportive” of the Philippine move elevating to a United Nations arbitration tribunal its bid to invalidate China’s claims in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea) and to stop Chinese incursions into Philippine-claimed parts of the disputed waters, a foreign official said Tuesday.

    Foreign Assistant Secretary for American Affairs Carlos Sorreta said members of the US Congress led by foreign affairs committee chair Ed Royce were “very interested” in Manila’s legal action invoking the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (Unclos) against Beijing in hopes of peacefully settling the protracted maritime dispute.

    “Members of the US Congress expressed their very strong support for our efforts to resolve the situation in a peaceful manner and in accordance with Unclos,” Sorreta told reporters Tuesday.

    “There was some discussion on the details of our action. They were very interested in the merits of our arguments, they’re very supportive of it,” said Sorreta.

    Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario briefed the US side on the Philippines’ Notification and Statement of Claim filed against China last week.

    “What the US has always maintained is that they don’t take sides in any dispute but they would like to see these disputes resolved peacefully,” said Philippine Ambassador to the US Jose Cuisia, who was present at the briefing.

    US Representatives Eliot Engel, Gregory Meeks, Vern Buchanan, Matthew James Salmon Thomas, Anthony Marino were part of the delegation that met with Philippine officials, including Environment Secretary Ramon Paje, Energy Secretary Carlos Petilla and Justice Secretary Leila de Lima.

    US Ambassador to the Philippines Harry Thomas Jr. was also present at the hour-long meeting at the DFA Tuesday morning.

    For his part, Royce said Washington was taking no sides in the territorial conflict but backs up an internationally accepted diplomatic solution.

    “It is best that China join the process so that we can move forward under international law,” the California Republican told The Associated Press after meeting with Del Rosario and other diplomats in Manila.

    “We want to calm the tensions,” Royce said. “We want this approached from the standpoint of diplomacy, and that is what we are conveying because in that way we don’t create a crisis which roils the markets or creates uncertainty.”

    Royce and the US delegation will meet with President Aquino and other Philippine officials before traveling to Beijing on Wednesday as part of their Asian tour.

    China, the Philippines and four other countries have overlapping claims across the vast South China Sea. Beijing insists it has sovereignty over virtually all of the region, which is said to be rich in oil and gas and is home to some of the world’s busiest sea lanes. With an AP report

  8. #18
    From - - -

    US congressmen express support for PH arbitration case vs China

    3:33 pm | Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

    US lawmakers express support for PH arbitration case against China

    MANILA, Philippines – Members of the United States (US) congress have expressed their support for the Philippine move to bring its West Philippine Sea (South China Sea) disputes before an arbitral body under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (Unclos), reiterating their country’s position for peaceful resolution of disputes under international law.

    In an interview with reporters, Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Assistant Secretary for the Office of American Affairs Carlos Sorreta said that Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert Del Rosario briefed the visiting congressmen on the country’s latest actions regarding the issue and that the congressmen were “very supportive of it.”

    “The members of the US congress expressed their very strong support for our efforts to resolve the situation there in a peaceful manner and in accordance with the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (Unclos),” Sorreta said.

    “There were some discussions on the details of our actions and they were very interested in the merits of our argument, they’re very supportive of it,” Sorreta added.

    The US congressional delegation (Codel), led by newly selected chairman of the US House committee on foreign affairs Congressman Edward Royce, had a meeting with Del Rosario, Sorreta, Environment Secretary Ramon Paje, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, Energy Secretary Carlos Jericho Petilla, Undersecretary for Policy Erlinda Basilio and other Philippine officials at the DFA main office Tuesday morning. The delegation was in the country for a three-day visit.

    The DFA had earlier said that high on the agenda for the meeting were discussions on the countries’ bilateral relations, defense and trade and investment cooperation, as well as regional security issues.

    Sorreta told reporters that the US Codel would be heading to Beijing after the Manila stop.

    Asked whether the US congressmen would be discussing the Philippines’ latest moves with the Chinese officials, Sorreta said that he could not speak on behalf of the congressmen but that based on his own understanding of the talks that transpired, the issue on the disputes would be discussed.

    “But we conveyed to them our determination to see this case through and they have said that they support it,” Sorreta said.

    “It is our hope that they will discuss it with the Chinese when they go to Beijing,” he added.

    Sorreta emphasized that the country welcomes moral and political support on its arbitration case against China but that it should proceed on its own merits.

    “The case should proceed on its own merits……we don’t expect nor do we wish that politics enter into it,” he said.

    “We believe very strongly in the merits of the case and that it will proceed on that basis….We welcome the moral support, and in a way political support, but with or without that our case would proceed,” he said.

    The US delegation includes Ranking Member Eliot Engel, Congressman Gregory Meeks, Congressman Vern Buchanan, Congressman Matthew James “Matt” Salmon, and Congressman Thomas Anthony “Tom” Marino.

    In a separate briefing for reporters, DFA spokesperson Assistant Secretary Raul Hernandez also noted that the discussions involved “the continuing commitment of the US in providing support for our building of our minimum credible defense posture” to protect its territorial waters.

    He added that “possible energy investments in the Philippines were also discussed.”

    The visit of the US congressmen came after the Philippines had earlier announced that it had decided to challenge China’s nine-dash claim to nearly all of the South of China Sea before an arbitral tribunal under the Unclos, saying that the “excessive claims violate international law.”

    China had not made an announcement on whether it would participate in the arbitral proceedings, but maintained its position that it has “indisputable sovereignty” over the area.

    The Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia, Vietnam and Taiwan have contending claims over parts of the sea.

    Meanwhile, asked whether discussions involved the issue on a US Navy minesweeper that ran aground on the Tubbataha Reefs, Sorreta said that there were no such discussions.

    Sorreta however pointed out that the US lawmakers recognized the “leadership of the Philippines in terms of protecting the environment, particularly the marine environment.”

  9. #19
    US, allies in show of force
    Philippines may soon join military exercise

    Associated Press

    12:06 am | Friday, February 8th, 2013

    ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam—Fighter jets from the United States and two key allies roared into western Pacific skies on Thursday in the combat phase of annual exercises that have gained importance as the region responds to the rise of China and other potential threats.

    The Cope North drills—which could soon swell in participants—are aimed at preparing air forces of the United States, Japan and Australia to fight together if a military crisis erupts.

    They also send a vivid reminder to Beijing that America’s regional alliances are strong, though officers leading the maneuvers say they are not looking to bait the Chinese military.

    “The training is not against a specific country, like China,” Japan Air Self-Defense Force Lt. Gen. Masayuki Hironaka said. “However, I think [the fact] that our alliance with the US and Australia is healthy is a strong message.”

    The three allies began flying sorties together earlier in the week around the US territory of Guam in a humanitarian phase of the exercises, dropping emergency assistance in packages that wafted down under parachutes to jungle airfields.

    On Thursday, fighter jets were joined by bombers, transport planes and tankers that refuel the fighters in midair. For the first time, Japanese tankers were joining the drills.

    US officials said they believe more allies, particularly New Zealand and the Philippines, will join the exercises soon.

    Maneuvers like Cope North are a key element of Washington’s evolving strategy in the Pacific as the United States shifts its emphasis away from Afghanistan and fighting ground wars.

    Focus on Asia

    The United States is now placing more attention on Asia and the possibility of an air or sea confrontation with the rapidly modernizing Chinese military, which has been briskly improving its forces and using its growing muscle to back up territorial claims that have raised regional tensions.

    This “Pacific rebalance” will bring newer and more advanced aircraft and ships to the Pacific theater over the next several years and spread out the tens of thousands of US troops now primarily based in Japan and South Korea.

    US Marines have already begun rotational deployments to Darwin, in northern Australia, and about 9,000 Marines stationed on the southern Japan island of Okinawa are to be moved to this tiny island, Hawaii and other locations.

    The changes reflect a deepening strategic concern over the rise of China as a regional military power with the potential to challenge America’s ability to intervene in a crisis, particularly around Taiwan or islands in the south and east China seas that are contested by China and US allies such as the Philippines and Japan.

    But the emphasis on alliance-building through exercises like Cope North also underscores fears in the Pentagon that major budget cuts looming in Congress could make it difficult for Washington to shoulder the whole burden of keeping China in check.

    The Pacific Air Forces commander, Gen. Herbert Carlisle, said the budget cuts now being considered could threaten America’s role as a superpower.

    China buildup

    Carlisle noted that China’s military, and especially its navy, have been undergoing a “massive buildup” and are becoming a more credible challenge to their US counterparts.

    So, strategic alliances are now more important than ever.

    “The United States and our partners are taking ‘joint’ to the next level,” Carlisle said. “The amount of commerce that goes through here, the amount of the world GDP that goes through here, if you look at the world’s population that is in this part of the world, the importance of the Pacific can’t be overstated.”

    Washington’s renewed focus on Asia has generally been welcomed by its more established and prosperous allies—like Japan and Australia—because they share the US concerns that changes in the balance of power could hurt economic growth throughout the region.

    “I think nations throughout the region are looking for that increased support that working with the US is likely to bring,” said Royal Australian Air Force Air Commodore Anthony Grady. “Australia welcomes the refocus.”

    Japanese defense

    Japan also has a more urgent need to tout its US alliance.

    Its Coast Guard ships and fighter aircraft have been deployed frequently over the past several months to drive their Chinese counterparts away from a group of small uninhabited islands that both nations claim as their own.

    The dispute has soured diplomatic and trade relations and shows no sign of abating.

    Under a treaty, the United States is obliged to come to Japan’s assistance if the islands are attacked or occupied.

    Hironaka noted that during Cope North, which involves about 1,700 troops, Japanese fighter jets will conduct needed bombing training that they cannot do in their own country because of crowding and safety restrictions.

    “Training with the US is very important to us,” he said. “The US-Japan alliance is key to security in the region.”

    Not all Asian nations have been so receptive to the US Pacific policy.

    US doubted

    Some countries have expressed doubts about how far the United States would be willing to go to support them in a crisis, especially since China is one of Washington’s most important trading partners.

    Others have voiced concerns that exercises like Cope North send a confrontational message that might lead to higher tensions.

    Carlisle acknowledged that as a possibility.

    “I think [China] has a tendency to look at things in a different light,” he said. “I think they may take this as something different than it is intended.”

  10. #20
    The west is in a desperate attempt to spark WWIII. Be it in the Pacific, the middle-east, Africa or the Korean peninsula.

    No need for China to start a shooting war with the US and her allies. A gold~backed Yuan will destroy the US dollar hegemony overnight. Too bad for the US, Japan has unleashed a currency war against the US dollar while expecfing US help against China`s supposed mulitary aggression. As for the pinoy trapos, still clueless to global shifting of economic power back to the east.

    ?.....note typing on a tablet is hard. Ayaw ko nang magedit... Kung mali espelling at grammar... Problema na Obama yan. Hehe.
    Last edited by danny; 02-10-2013 at 06:35 AM.
    Understand? / ¿Entiendes?

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