Philippines to stand ground vs bullying of China

Discussion in 'China' started by Drsomnath999, Apr 29, 2012.

  1. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    In the South China Sea, two superpowers flex their muscles - The Globe and Mail

    In the South China Sea, two superpowers flex their muscles

    The Scarborough Shoal, a triangle of rocks and reefs in the South China Sea, is so small that much of it disappears underwater at high tide. And yet for the past seven weeks it has been the epicentre of a growing naval crisis, with China and the Philippines each dispatching ships and warning the other that it won’t back away from the minuscule atoll.

    Some say the South China Sea is a maritime version of Central Asia during the “Great Game,” the 19th-century era in which empires jousted using proxy armies without ever coming into direct conflict. In Central Asia, it was Russia and Britain that duelled from the shadows. In today’s South China Sea, it’s the world’s latest superpowers, China and the United States, competing over waters that produce one-10th of the world’s fish, transit a third of the world’s shipping and – if higher-end estimates are accurate – might hold up to 100 billion barrels of oil and six trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

    At immediate issue is whose boats should be allowed to fish the lagoon, which is rich in sharks, giant clams and other species. But behind that argument lies a complex web of competing interests, one that sees a rising China trying to enforce an ancient claim to the entire 3.5 million square kilometres of the South China Sea and leaving smaller rivals to ask the United States for support and protection.

    The map of the South China Sea is a jumble of overlapping claims; six countries in all claim a part of it.

    Then there’s the United States, which recently completed naval exercises with the Philippines near Scarborough Shoal. It is stepping up its military presence in the region as part of a strategic “pivot” toward Asia.

    In China’s eyes, that U.S. return to Asia is driving tensions. “Why is the Philippines so harsh toward China in this instance? Because they believe America will back them and China will do anything to avoid that confrontation,” Xu Guangyu, a retired People’s Liberation Army general, said in an interview.

    The standoff at the Scarborough Shoal – named for a tea-trading ship that sunk there in the 1800s – began in April, when a Filipino warship blocked five Chinese vessels that it accused of illegally fishing in the area.

    The Philippines says China has been trying to “bully” it and the other countries that border the South China Sea. Manila sent a diplomatic note to Beijing this week, complaining that it had spotted nearly 100 Chinese vessels in and around the Scarborough Shoal this week, despite mutual moratoriums on fishing in the area this summer.

    China’s Foreign Ministry said only 20 fishing and fishery patrol boats had been deployed. But tensions are such that China’s nationalist Global Times newspaper declared two weeks ago that “peace will be a miracle.”

    The rhetoric from Manila has been equally dire. “It’s possible that we may be tested,” Filipino Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario warned recently. “If we are tested, it’s possible that everyone will need to make a sacrifice.”

    A look at some of the players in this “new great game”:

    China: Only in recent years has Beijing had the naval capability to back its claim to most of the South China Sea. In an indication of shifting priorities, the South Fleet of the People’s Liberation Army Navy – long the smallest of the China’s three fleets – is now on the verge of becoming the biggest as China expands its submarine base on southern Hainan Island. When China’s first aircraft carrier, the refitted Soviet ship Varyag, is finally deployed (it’s currently in sea trials), many expect it will also join the South Fleet.China has already fought two brief wars with Vietnam in 1974 and 1988 over the disputed Spratly Islands, a time when China’s navy was a shadow of the force it is now. There seems to be a growing appetite here for another short conflict that would put its neighbours in line and show that Beijing was serious about its claims. “For those who infringe upon our sovereignty to steal the oil, we need to warn them politely, and then take action if they don’t respond,” read an opinion piece published last fall in the Global Times. “We shouldn’t waste the opportunity to launch some tiny-scale battles that could deter provocateurs from going further.”

    Philippines: The government of President Benigno Aquino believes the Scarborough Shoal (known as Panatag Shoal in the Philippines and Huangyan Island in China) is an issue they can’t back down on. Manila seems to have geography on its side – the reef is more than 800 kilometres southeast of Hong Kong, but just 220 kilometres west of the main Filipino island of Luzon – and the Filipino public squarely supports standing up to China. But easier said than done. The Philippines Navy is tiny, with a former U.S. Coast Guard cutter as its flagship (compared to the dozens of destroyers, frigates and submarines possessed by the Chinese navy). The country is also heavily reliant on Chinese trade and tourism. Manila’s tough talk softened noticeably once Beijing began blocking imports of Filipino bananas and warning tourists to avoid the Philippines.

    But as Gen. Xu said, the Philippines seems to feel that has Washington its back. Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin surprised many this month when he suggested that the Scarborough Shoal was covered by a mutual defence treaty signed by the U.S. and the Philippines in 1951, meaning American forces would intervene if shooting broke out. Though no U.S. official has publicly made the same assertion, The U.S. has hastened the delivery of another cutter to the Filipino navy, and the nuclear submarine USS North Carolina docked in the Philippines in the middle of the current crisis.

    Vietnam: To some South China Sea watchers, the biggest surprise is that the Philippines, not Vietnam, is leading the confrontation with China right now. The navies of China and Vietnam are nose-to-nose in the disputed Spratly Islands (which each occupy part of, as do the Philippines, Malaysia and Taiwan), and warning shots are not uncommon. Nationalist sentiment is high in Vietnam. Prolonged anti-Chinese protests erupted in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City last year following a clash between Chinese and Vietnamese boats near the Spratlys. Like the Philippines, Vietnam has taken to hosting joint naval exercises with the United States (its old enemy), drills that China sees as a direct challenge to its claim. Unlike the Filipino navy, the Vietnamese People’s Navy can put up a fight on its own, with seven frigates and six submarines among its fleet.

    The United States: China says it started seeing a new swagger from Manila and Hanoi after Secretary of State Hilary Clinton’s assertion two years ago that freedom of navigation in the South China Sea was a U.S. “national interest.” But the United States doesn’t want escalation. “I don’t think the U.S. has any interest in any kind of tension or any kind of conflict in the South China Sea,” said Stephanie Kleine-Ahlbrandt, head of the Beijing office of the International Crisis Group, which recently published a report on the growing tensions. “These countries literally begged the U.S. to get more involved.”

    Association of Southeast Asian Nations: ASEAN, as the regional body is known, is an umbrella group that five South China Sea claimants – Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia and Brunei – are members of. Hanoi and Manila have repeatedly proposed settling the disputes en masse via a negotiation between China and ASEAN, or via international courts. Beijing, however, rejects what it calls “internationalization” of the South China Sea issue. “China is a big country and the other countries are small countries, and that’s just a fact,” Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi told the 2010 ASEAN summit in Hanoi.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    South China Sea by the numbers

    50 per cent

    The percentage of the globe’s oil tanker traffic passing through the South China Sea, the shortest route between the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

    $5-trillion

    The value of ship-borne trade which traverses the sea lane.

    100 billion

    The high-end estimate of the number of barrels of oil in the area surrounding the Spratly and Paracel Islands.

    6 trillion

    The estimated reserves of natural gas resources, in cubic feet, in the shoals.

    10 per cent

    The amount of the global fisheries catch provided by the waterway – from sea cucumbers and squid to snapper and shark.

    Source: Reuters, U.S. Energy Information Administration
     
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  2. techsupport

    techsupport Regular Member

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    Hey genius, all the Philippines is claiming are all within the 200m EEZ. Philippines' dispute with Vietnam, Malaysia and the other ASEAN countries are due to overlapping EEZ which can be settled peacefully by compromising a little here and there and the other doing the same. ASEAN SCS disputes are completely different from the dispute that we all have with China. China's claim is absurd and her not going to any international arbitration to peacefully settle the dispute means only one thing and that is China itself knows that she will lose.

    And will all the Chinese stop living on what the Philippines deployed to stop the Chinese fishermen from illegally fishing on someone's EEZ. One Navy ship showed up which happened to be the closest to the shoal and the Chinese cant move on even if the ship was there for only a couple of days. Danm! Your FLEC ship lurking around the shoal can easily destroy all our naval ships. If the Philippines think the same way like you guys do there were shots made already. Think away from what a communist government tells you and look at what they're doing. Provocative warnings of violence from your government media. Then look at what the Philippine government were saying. Did we ever warned China to stop whatever she's doing or "Hear the sounds of Cannons"? No! All our government keeps on saying is for your government to submit to arbitration to effectively settle the dispute peacefully. Chinese definition of settling the dispute peacefully is for the Philippines to backdown and not to bring it over for arbitration.

    If China thinks their claim is right then submit to arbitration like what all peaceful nations do. Reasons like "we're a major superpower and we're not going to submit" sounds really stupid. All the Philippines have against China is the international law which China agreed to like almost all nations in the world. US not signing the UNCLOS is not important because they are not party to the dispute. They're there because they have their own interests. What China have against the Philippines is her Armed Forces. China cant stop the Philippines from taking advantage of the international law. Philippines cant stop China if she wants to take advantage of her military superiority.

    There is a reason why no other nation support China's claim. You guys just dont want to admit it.
     
  3. WuMaoCleverbot

    WuMaoCleverbot Regular Member

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    Why would any country share their natural resources to China when China clearly has no legal right to it??? It would just embolden China to wantonly claim any territory that she covets. Your IDEA is a complete NUTS. We should learn from history and not repeat our mistakes.
     
  4. Oblaks

    Oblaks Regular Member

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    Wake up buddy you always think that the situation is that easy to deal with.

    You think that negotiations have not been tried. Just last year another one has just been made to no avail. Why? Because chinas's terms are just overwhelming. Now they are negotiating again on how to end the standoff, they are working for a temporary solution but the whole dispute will never be settled unles china realizes that her claims are too much.

    Anyone really reading the news would know that ASEAN nations never had problems with each other about this issue as much as each nation had troubles with China

    The Philippines is not counting on the navy. If you have just read my posts, you can find that the Philippines has been seeking arbitration to end the dispute once and for all

    The Philippines is not entirely counting on the US about this issue. If it did then it would have done things to provoke china. If you have been reading the news, there was a point that the Philippine government said that they do not need US intervention.

    Have you really seen the extent of each countries claim? If you did then you will know that for example Vietnam is claiming the parcels ang Philippines the spratlys and their EEZ almost touch but does not overlap. Don't assume that all governments are as greedy as you know who.

    " if you want to reply least stay focus on my replies, not just other bias stuff."

    What you want me to kow tow with your opinions. It just happened that I so disagree with how you view things. Shallow indeed.
     
  5. Oblaks

    Oblaks Regular Member

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    Advancing the National Interests of the United States: Ratification of the Law of the Sea | Center for Strategic and International Studies

    The other factor that is different this time as the Senate considers ratification is the overwhelming support of U.S. business. Manufacturers along with oil, telecommunications, and shipping companies, and every other sector of the economy with a stake in access to sea lines of communication and undersea resources support ratification of the convention. Both the American Petroleum Institute and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce have voiced their support. Senator Kerry is taking advantage of this support from U.S. businesses by including their representatives in upcoming hearings.
     
  6. satish007

    satish007 Senior Member Senior Member

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    sharing is always good thing
     
  7. WuMaoCleverbot

    WuMaoCleverbot Regular Member

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    But what China wants to do is force her neighbors to share their natural resources...it's not sharing...it's more like FREELOADING.
     
  8. s002wjh

    s002wjh Senior Member Senior Member

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    did you read the poster above you? philippine obivous think they should have all the resrouce etc. clearly its you and philippine need to wake up on the situation on how the real world operate. china been a major power and US been neutral in the dispute meaning PH has to negeoiate with china on this. if this drag longer and china become even more powerfull, philippine will lose any advantage of negioation. right now china obivous want to negiotiate with philippine in their favor, PH should get as much as possible in these negioation. go head to head against china has opposite affect as show in recent incident.

    heck my country doesn't claim the SCS i don't really care PH want to negotiate with china or not, they can go up against china for all i care, just don't expect US to drop in a solve the issue for them.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2012
  9. s002wjh

    s002wjh Senior Member Senior Member

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    IT WILL NEVER PASS. do you know how many things US has to give up if we sign UNCLOS. for example US sub will have to raise to surface in any countries EEZ and show its flag. US navy intel ship can't not do any intel gather in china EEZ base on UNCLOS section 20etc etc. this is just one of the example, if you wonder why after decades US still never sign it!!!
     
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  10. techsupport

    techsupport Regular Member

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    The all-assuming.
     
  11. Oblaks

    Oblaks Regular Member

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    Are u digging my post? You are going on circles. The Philippines is clearly claiming only what is allowed of her to claim and is more interested in protecting the area. It is china who is claiming all of SCS all because of the potential of its resources. Your idea on how the world operates have long been gone. We are on the modern era, nations watch each othe's back and we have international bodies now. You are right to say that china may just grow more stronger in the future? That is exactly why a resolution must be done now and that is what the Philippines has been pushing for. the Philippines has never ask the US to solve the conflict for them it is US who is voluntarily showing indirect signs of support.

    And who are you to speak for the US? If you are even genuinely american.
     
  12. Oblaks

    Oblaks Regular Member

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    Clinton Obama and panetta has been pushing to ratify it and it is s200wjh who is saying no to ratification. Hell American submarines can just stay under water and nobody will know just like what china is doing.
     
  13. Zebra

    Zebra Senior Member Senior Member

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    U.S. will put more warships in Asia: Panetta

    By David Alexander
    SINGAPORE | Sat Jun 2, 2012 12:46am EDT


    (Reuters) - The United States will move the majority of its warships to the Asia-Pacific in coming years and keep six aircraft carriers in the region, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said on Saturday, giving the first details of a new U.S. military strategy.

    U.S. will put more warships in Asia: Panetta | Reuters
     
  14. ice berg

    ice berg Senior Member Senior Member

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    So they will keep the same number of aircraft carriers in the region as they do now. What is new about that?
     
  15. s002wjh

    s002wjh Senior Member Senior Member

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    yes well see what happen. is this the same stuff that congress say they will put tariff on chinese good, got all the media attention then a month later, we didn't even see a fart coming out from congress regarding the tariff. you really overestimate power of oval office and believe politician will do what they said and keep their promise, there are alot lobbyist in US don't want to ratify UNCLOS. we already has the military/economic power we need to secure resource etc etc. ratify it just hender our military.
     
  16. s002wjh

    s002wjh Senior Member Senior Member

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    lol nation watch each back right. so if everyone is singing kumbaya and holding hand then why would every nation on this planet still upgrading their military hardware.

    so philippine claims also overlapping taiwan, vietnam, malasia claim, you saying those area should be part of philippine too?
    US voluntarily, lol are u serious, when did US ever offer to settle the dispute. it is vietnam, philippine want the US to back them up. and you think US will just goto philippine ask them to allow us to help them after ph kick US force out in 90s.
     
  17. s002wjh

    s002wjh Senior Member Senior Member

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    nothing big here, increase from 5 to 6 carrier, and from 50% to 60%. US no doubt want to deter any nation from very aggressive behavior. but i doubt china will do that. china more likely use its soft power to acheive its goal.
     
  18. Oblaks

    Oblaks Regular Member

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    To be able to watch weaker nation's back. There you go again with your kiddie analysis. Do you know that costa rica does not have a military

    That is the reason why arbitration OR a multilateral discussion should take place. All I am saying in my posts is that China's way of addressing the issue is not justified. I don't know why keep on accusing me of pointing to the philippines as the rightful owner.

    Did I say US is is offering to settle the dispute? I said they are showing indirect signs of support. Go back to some of my posts and other member's and you will find examples based on some articles. Philippines is only turning to America to affirm if the MDT is still in place. And there is no denying that there is indeed a defense treaty. So what is wrong in trying to affirm it? And don't sour grape on the departure of the US bases in the Philippines, it is for the good of your beloved China.
     
  19. Oblaks

    Oblaks Regular Member

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    China’s soft power are where either they run up against China’s hard power ambitions—it can use its cultural diplomacy to try to win over Vietnam or the Philippines, but if Beijing then claims nearly the entire South China Sea, all the soft power in the world isn’t going to help—or when the soft power initiative runs up against its own limitations. For example, China’s ability to project its culture or its media is limited by the constraints on free expression within China itself.
     
  20. s002wjh

    s002wjh Senior Member Senior Member

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    we can go this back and forth. i'm gonna stop here now
     

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