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The South China Sea's Gathering Storm

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The South China Sea's Gathering Storm

Old 28th Jul 2017, 09:01
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I think some in senior positions would do well to remember that it's "speak softly and carry a big stick". OK we can debate the size and effectiveness of the stick but the speak softly bit holds. For example, recent comments on the Russians envying our carrier were frankly toe-curling and really not needed. Let's confine pissing-highest-up-the-wall contests to the infant school toilets where they belong.
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Old 28th Jul 2017, 09:42
  #222 (permalink)  
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So Boris - are the new carriers coming down to the South China Sea - or not?
Sounded like a bit of a brain fart which he subsequently thought better of between opening his mouth and the Q&A, where he then contradicted himself.
No, he was merely following the line given by the Minister for Defence.

British warship to test troubled waters

Britain is drawing up plans to send a warship to the South China Sea in a move that is likely to anger the Beijing government and raise tensions at a delicate moment. Sir Michael Fallon, the defence secretary, confirmed yesterday that the vessel would be deployed next year and told China that she would expect free passage in the disputed waters.......

Sir Michael, visiting Sydney for talks with his Australian counterpart, said: “We hope to send a warship to the region next year. We have not finalised exactly where that deployment will take place but we won’t be constrained by China from sailing through the South China Sea. We have the right of freedom of navigation and we will exercise it.”

A Type-45 destroyer or an ageing Type-23 frigate is likely to be involved; the first time in at least a decade that Britain has tested the right to conduct such an exercise in the disputed waters. It is a significant change of approach. Rear-admiral Chris Parry, a former Royal Navy officer, applauded Sir Michael’s announcement. “This is a big deal,” he said. “I have been urging the Americans to challenge the UK to say, ‘Come and join us in doing this because we can’t do it on our own.’ ”......

The British warship mission, whatever form it takes, will be fraught. Rear-admiral Parry said that the Chinese military might consider an attack. “The Chinese won’t want to take on the Americans but they might consider making an example of what they consider to be a small nation like us.” Britain will probably choose to place its warship as part of a US-led aircraft carrier group when it makes the trip through the South China Sea, he said.

Earlier this month China reacted aggressively toward the US when it sent the USS Stethem, a destroyer, within 12 miles of the Paracel Islands in the South China Sea. The islands are occupied by China but are also claimed by Vietnam. The Chinese foreign ministry accused the US of trespassing within China’s territorial waters and said military vessels and fighter planes had been dispatched to warn off the American destroyer.

A number of British former naval officers have warned that any tough talk about freedom of navigation for British ships must be set against the reality of operating conditions at the Royal Navy, which has lost much of its capability to project power across the world after decades of decline.
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Old 28th Jul 2017, 20:55
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ahhh read it carefully .. " a warship"...

probably a River Class ... or a tanker on its way from S korea........
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Old 28th Jul 2017, 21:00
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ORAC

IIRC China negotiated (quietly) deals with Burma, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran in the pre 1962 period

The Indian case was negotiable but Nehru went public and would only negotiate if the CHinese gave him everything he wanted

Regretfully since the mid-80's China has taken a far more bellicose (and idiotic) approach to such matters (eg the 5/7/9/25...... dash line)
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Old 15th Aug 2017, 07:22
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China and India are reportedly preparing for full-scale war over a Himalayan border dispute

Chinese and Indian troops are readying themselves for a possible armed conflict in the event they fail in their efforts to achieve a peaceful resolution to their border dispute on the Doklam plateau in the Himalayas, observers said.

On Friday, India’s defence minister Arun Jaitley told parliament that the country’s armed forces are “prepared to take on any eventuality” of the stand-off, Indian Express reported the same day. Sources close to the Chinese military, meanwhile, said that the People’s Liberation Army is increasingly aware of the possibility of war, but will aim to limit any conflict to the level of skirmishes, such as those contested by India and Pakistan in Kashmir.

“The PLA will not seek to fight a ground war with Indian troops early on. Instead it will deploy aircraft and strategic missiles to paralyse Indian mountain divisions stationed in the Himalayas on the border with China,” a military insider told the South China Morning Post on condition of anonymity, adding that he believes Indian troops will probably hold out for “no more than a week.” Another military source said that officers and troops from the Western Theatre Command have already been told to prepare for war with India over the Doklam crisis. “There is a voice within the army telling it to fight because it was Indian troops that intruded into Chinese territory in Donglang [Doklam],” the second source said. “Such a voice is supported by the public.”

Both sources said that China’s military believes any conflict will be controlled, and not spill over into other disputed areas, of which there are currently three along the 2,000km border between the two Asian giants. However, Indian defence experts warned that once the first shot is fired, the conflict may escalate into full-scale war. That in turn could result in New Delhi blockading China’s maritime lifeline in the Indian Ocean.

“Any Chinese military adventurism will get a fitting reply from the Indian military,” Dr Rajeev Ranjan Chaturvedy, a research associate at the Institute of South Asian Studies at the National University of Singapore, told the Post. “Certainly, it will be detrimental for both, but if Beijing escalates [the conflict], it will not be limited. Perhaps, it may extend to the maritime domain as well,” he said. “If China engages in a military offensive against India, New Delhi will take all necessary measures ... [and will] respond to Chinese actions in its own way. Why only a border war? It could escalate to a full-scale India-China war,” he said.

Rajeswari Rajagopalan, a defence analyst from the Observer Research Foundation think tank in New Delhi, said that “in the event of a full-scale war, definitely India’s navy will prevent the Chinese navy from moving into the Bay of Bengal or the Indian Ocean.” China is heavily reliant on imported fuel and, according to figures published by state media, more than 80 per cent of its oil imports travel via the Indian Ocean or Strait of Malacca.

Beijing-based naval expert Li Jie said that India in 2010 established a naval base in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, close to the Strait of Malacca, where the narrowest sea channel is just 1.7km wide. “Since 2010, India has also upgraded two airstrips on the islands to serve fighters and reconnaissance aircraft,” he said. “All these moves pave the way for India to be able to blockade Chinese military and commercial ships from entering the Indian Ocean in the event of a naval conflict between the two countries.”.........
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Old 15th Aug 2017, 10:52
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well Doklam is a crazy area to go to war over - a tiny plateau (89 sq kms) that slopes down to the east into Bhutan and the argument seems to be exactly where the boundary lies across it

Not helped by the fact that Tibetan herdsmen have grazed the area in the summer for generations. The Chinese are sticking to a descrpttion in the Anglo -Chinese Treaty of 1890 (when the detailed geography wasn't really well known) and the Bhutan side on traditional useage.

The fact that India controls Bhutanese foreign relationships doesn't assist
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Old 15th Aug 2017, 18:24
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Let'em play.
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Old 16th Aug 2017, 18:35
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Both sources said that China’s military believes any conflict will be controlled, and not spill over into other disputed areas,
Sounds like famous last words but I suppose it's possible.
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Old 16th Aug 2017, 21:49
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India-China tensions escalate as soldiers hurl stones at each other in Kashmir | The Independent

Rocks today....
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Old 18th Aug 2017, 07:23
  #230 (permalink)  
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China's plans to rule the seas hit trouble in Pakistan

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Old 23rd Aug 2017, 00:15
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Hmmm - so as well as the underwater Great Wall, this could make life tricky for submariners.
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Old 23rd Aug 2017, 13:43
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String of Pearls.....

.....closely resembles a map of the settlements created by the Chinese admiral who took a huge fleet a very long way in 1421. But was it all true one asks?

An interesting read if nothing else "1421 the Year the Chinese discovered the World" by Gavin Menzies.
There are debunkers around the discussion.

The Ancient Mariner
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Old 29th Aug 2017, 09:04
  #233 (permalink)  
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COUNTERING CHINESE COERCION: THE CASE OF DOKLAM

CHINA’S MILITARY BASE IN DJIBOUTI: STRATEGIC IMPLICATIONS FOR INDIA
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Old 29th Aug 2017, 14:20
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Don't you think it's about time that the non Western world got to have it's version of the Cold War, all with chest thumping the finger pointing and giving each other the Mickey all the time? It is China's and India's turn, by golly, to embrace the Power versus Power madness. As the two most populous nations on the planet, I say they have as much a right as anyone to do some push-and-push-back stuff.

Lay on, Macduff! And damned be him that first cries, “Hold, enough!”

I'll invest in popcorn futures (even though this fight looks a lot like Mayweather (China) versus McGregor (India) at the moment).
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Old 30th Aug 2017, 17:53
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ORAc - interesting link about DOKLAM

What I find interesting is that here the Chinese stand by the 1890 Treaty and Bhutan/India stand on historic useage

Elsewhere the Indian side stands on UK/Tibet treaties and the CHinese on historic useage........

This sort of border friction occurs when you have treaties and claims based on 19th Century maps and travellers tales which were incorporated into treaties & claims between much larger countries a long way from the action.

The only peaceful and permanent solution is for BOTH sides to be willing to give and take - and to get some decent maps to work with. The US - Mexico Border is a great example of what can be achieved by quietly adjusting things over a period of years
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Old 7th Sep 2017, 04:40
  #236 (permalink)  
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India army chief: we must prepare for simultaneous war with China and Pakistan
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Old 7th Sep 2017, 16:31
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Have at it, General.
As Vegetius said ... Igitur qui desiderat pacem, praeparet bellum
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Old 10th Oct 2017, 07:17
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Rand Corporation: Conflict with China Revisited - Prospects, Consequences, and Strategies for Deterrence
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Old 10th Oct 2017, 15:28
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"This Perspective was sponsored by the United States Army"

not surprising it suggest irect action may be necessary then........
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Old 10th Oct 2017, 15:29
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Key Findings

The United States Will Likely Find Itself Forced to Shift From Deterrence by Denial, Based on Direct Defense of Its Interests and Allies in the Western Pacific, to Deterrence by Punishment, Based on the Threat of Escalation

  • The United States may be able to reduce or delay reliance on escalatory responses by shifting to less vulnerable platforms: longer-range precision strike drones and vessels to carry longer-range drones and submarines, along with the further dispersal of bases and force flows.
  • The United States can encourage and assist allies and partners in the region to increase the range and capabilities of their own air and sea defenses.
  • Barring unforeseen technological developments, it will not be possible for the United States to confidently and indefinitely rely on the direct defense of its regional interests.

Recommendations

  • The United States should focus on deescalating localized clashes in East Asia.
  • The United States should move sooner rather than later — before its power position in the region diminishes further — to constructively engage China across a range of potential flash points, such as conflicting maritime claims in the South China Sea, cross-Strait relations, issues on the Korean Peninsula.
  • The United States should maintain a dense network of diplomatic relationships with China while strengthening channels for crisis communications, including regular leader-to-leader, military-to-military contacts.
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