The Pentagon are sending strong signals to China that they intend to trigger a military conflict with them over disputed islands in the South China Sea.
Admiral Scott Swift, Commander of the U.S. Pacific Fleet, recently told a defence conference that the U.S. Navy were prepared to run Chinese military exclusion zones with military surveillance aircraft and warships.
When Swift is not busy throwing red meat to military contractors he is flying around the South China Sea on P-8A Poseidon advanced maritime surveillance aircraft.
These aircraft are currently based at Clark Airbase in the Philippines.
Swift is likely recalling with nostalgia the “good old days” of the Cold War when naval aviators like himself flew missions from Cubi Point Naval Air Station in the Philippines.
In some cases, the Navy pilots would play “cat and mouse” games with Soviet and Chinese aircraft and naval vessels.
Later, back at the Officer’s Club in Cubi, these “airedales,” as they were called, regaled their colleagues with inflated stories while holding a San Miguel beer in one hand and a Filipina hooker in the other.
Yes, America had much to be proud of in its naval aviators in those halcyon days when nuclear Armageddon was just around the corner.
Swift’s bellicose statement was followed by the Obama administration’s announcement that it was selling $1.83 billion in advanced weapons to Taiwan, which China regards as a renegade province.
The U.S. weapons deal, which includes two Oliver Hazard Perry class missile frigates, threatens to derail warming cross-strait relations between Beijing and Taipei, a thaw that was highlighted by a historic meeting between the presidents of China and Taiwan in Singapore in November.
The Obama administration’s policy toward China is predicated on its military “pivot to Asia” announced in 2013.
The pivot to Asia was a product of neo-conservatives in the Obama administration who took their cue from the Brookings Institution’s notorious neo-con Robert Kagan.
Kagan is married to the State Department’s Victoria Nuland, the architect of the Ukrainian coup and America’s military showdown with Russia.
U.S. Navy propagandists are also refusing to use the generally-accepted geographic term for the South China Sea, preferring to call it the East Vietnam Sea and West Philippines Sea.
The protocol-savvy Chinese have received the message loud and clear and they don’t like it.
The Obama administration poked the Chinese dragon in the eye again when, a few weeks following the Beijing-Taipei summit in Singapore, it announced it was basing its P-8 Poseidon aircraft in Singapore to fly missions against Chinese targets in the South China Sea.
The message to China could not have been more stark: the U.S. not only would stymie closer Chinese-Taiwanese relations but would turn Singapore, which hosted the unprecedented cross-strait summit, into a U.S. base for operations against China.
The Obama administration also began social media-focused destabilization pressure on Malaysia’s government, via the use of George Soros-funded NGOs, after Malaysia granted the Chinese Navy basing rights at Kota Kinabulu in the state of Sabah on Borneo.
The U.S. Navy wants to deny China any naval or air basing rights outside of Chinese territory.
However, China is not being deterred.
The China Overseas Port Holding Company recently leased facilities in the Pakistani port of Gwadar near the Persian Gulf and the Chinese Navy has been granted basing rights in Djibouti at the mouth of the Red Sea.