As this blog enters its fourth week, one theme that has consistently cropped up in the news is the issue of Chinese military developments. This post marks the first in an ongoing series tracking media and blogger reactions to the growth of China’s military capabilities.
China: Danger Before the Doom?
By J. Robert Smith @ American Thinker
China, facing an end to its economic miracle, and facing a demographic crisis in a mere twenty years, may find its beefed up military useful in securing resources sooner through intimidation or, in some cases, through outright seizure — particularly in Asia, where China’s military would have its strongest reach.
China’s Military Comes Into Its Own
By Rodger Baker @ STRATFOR
A Chinese military motivated by nationalism — and perhaps an even stronger interest in preserving its power and influence within China — would find it better to be in contention with the United States than in calm. This is because U.S. pressure, whether real or rhetorical, drives China’s defense development.
China’s Questionable Military Aims
By Robert Maginnis @ Human Events
After two decades of military modernization it appears the PLA is pushing a hard-line agenda and becoming more willing to voice its opinion on foreign policy issues. This is a worrisome development especially as the Chinese leadership, which includes new nationalistic-minded military commanders, takes command in 2012.
China’s Military Muscle
By Michael Swaine @ Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
There is a serious danger that the U.S. image of a more assertive and aggressive China and the Chinese notion that the United States is on the decline will feed a sense of strategic rivalry—and this could become a self-fulfilling prophecy. To assume that there will be a growing military rivalry that will eventually evolve into a Cold War-type situation is the biggest risk for the United States and China.
J-20: The Threat We Think it Is?
China’s ability to rapidly develop this technology shows that the U.S. can’t ignore high-end threats and must keep its R&D shops humming. If the J-20 isn’t designed to defeat the F-22 and F-35, it’s follow-on will be.
U.S. Navy Chief Isn’t Sweating China’s Sea Power
By Spencer Ackerman @ Danger Room
Global maritime cooperation? “I would very much like the PLAN to be part of that and in fact they are.” New Chinese subs and satellites? “As we all seek to do… they clearly want to assure that operational space around the mainland and the areas they consider to be vital and important.” Growing Chinese sea power in general? “[C]onsistent historically with the economic rise of powers.” If there’s a message there, it’s that the U.S. Navy isn’t looking for a confrontation.
What it means for Japan
China’s Rise = Remilitarizing Japan?
By John Hemmings @ The Diplomat
Further Chinese militarisation will be met with further Japanese militarisation—and thus begins a dangerous cycle. By focusing on Japan’s past rather than a mutually beneficial future, and by embracing the worst elements of nationalism, Chinese leaders have sought to displace questions over legitimacy and internal political reform.
“We can’t help but have concerns about a certain lack of transparency in (China’s) defence build-up and growing maritime activities” … “Conflicts over maritime interests have been surfacing recently and we cannot ignore that they are becoming elements of regional instability,” Kan said. “We should claim Japan’s own rights openly and squarely.”
A former contributor to World Intelligence (Japan Military Review), James Simpson joined Japan Security Watch in 2011, migrating with his blog Defending Japan. He has a Masters in Security Studies from Aberystwyth University and is currently living in Kawasaki, Japan.
His primary interests include the so-called 'normalization' of Japanese security (i.e. militarization), and the political impact of the abduction issue with North Korea.
James Simpson has 254 post(s) on Japan Security Watch