Protesters march at an anti-Japan protest in Shenzhen,
Guangdong Province, Aug. 19. Beijing-approved protests have
broken out after Japanese landed on a disputed island.
China Must Show 'Courage of its Convictions' in Face of Japan-U.S. Hostility
(Huanqiu, People's Republic of China)
Is Japan preparing for an armed conflict with China over territories
claimed by both nations? And is Tokyo attempting to rope the United States into
participating in such a conflict? This editorial from China's state-run Huanqiu argues
that whatever the goals of Japan-U.S. war games that began today, if China has
the 'courage of its convictions,' it will achieve its territorial goals
while maintaining its relationships with the U.S. and Japan.
A Japanese man, part of a small band of lawmakers and people described as 'nationalists,' after landing on one of the disputed Senkaku Islands - known as the Diaoyu Islands to China. The event has triggered mass protests and anger across China - as similar acts have done over recent decades. China asserts that Japan is preparing for a conflict and wants the U.S. involved.
According to Japanese
media, starting today, the Japanese Self-Defense Force will
participate with the American III Marine
Expeditionary Force in a 37-day war game focused on “Island Capture Combat”
on Guam and Tinian Island - the first time this island will serve as a location
for war exercises.
On the eve of the
exercises, the Japanese Defense Department announced that “this exercise is not
aimed at any particular hypothetical enemy.” The backdrop hardly matters, the
announcement may have been intentionally vague, and the intended targets
unspoken, but the driving force behind them are closely tied to Japan’s new
concept of East Asian security, based on the Japan-America
Security Treaty, and is given added impetus by America’s strategy of “returning
to the Asia-Pacific.”
A few months ago, during Japanese
Prime Minister Noda’s visit to the United States, the two countries reached a
consensus on strengthening military cooperation in the Western Pacific, to join
forces to build a “network” to maintain their outdated security dominance. This
exercise undoubtedly has very realistic aims - and a very symbolic meaning.
Posted by Worldmeets.US
Japan has made
it clear that this exercise will serve to promote cooperation in the area of
“dynamic defense.” The so-called “dynamic
defense policy” was first put forward in Japan’s 2010 National
Defense Program Guidelines, and outlines that Japan should pay special
attention to force mobility and rapid-response capabilities to prevent “terrorist
attacks” and “island invasions by an external force.” Japan is eager to master the
long-range deployment of combat forces and develop their capacity for “island
seizure warfare,” but what's behind the curtain? Japan’s Sankei Shimbun quoted one defense official
who said, “This exercise is based on the scenario of a Chinese Army offensive
launched to recapture the Diaoyu Islands.”
The Japanese defense official is unlikely to have used the term "Diaoyu Islands", as in Japan, they are called the Senkaku Islands].
Japan is doing
everything it can to tie the Diaoyu Islands sovereignty
dispute to the Japan-America
Security Treaty, attempting to leverage external forces to put added pressure
on China. Even if U.S. concern over the China-Japan territorial dispute is
limited and its position vague, it does from time to time send signals
of “deep concern” to Japan. This is a great underestimation of China’s firm and
unbreakable will to maintain its sovereignty and territorial integrity.
This is clearly
a bluff - and the stakes are high. Is it a petty trick intended to provoke
China, or does it reflect a lack of strategic confidence? Both Japan and America
presumably know the answer.
There is little
on earth more stubborn than stale ideas - and there are few pursuits more
glorious than going beyond them.
While on the
path of peaceful development, one cannot ignore hostility, disregard the core interests
of one's own country, or allow foreign interference to upset the pace of
progress. This means maintaining a developmental momentum capable of smashing the
existing power structure, while having a dedication and courage that will maintain
the course of China's relationships.
As a rising
superpower following a new path, it is no easy task to explore the innumerable
possibilities of international relations. China needs firm confidence and
sufficient courage of its convictions.