Cherae Hunt |Staff Writer|
The United States meddling in Chinese affairs and battles may cause a war, according to a U.S. author Jim Sciutto.
The South China Sea is the subject of numerous rival territorial claims over an area that includes fertile fishing grounds and potentially rich reserves of undersea natural resources.
China is increasingly showing that even far from its mainland, it sees itself as having jurisdiction over the body of water, according to Sciutto in an article in CNN Politics.
Senior Pentagon officials acknowledged for the first time that China is placing weapons on artificially constructed islands in the South China Sea in an apparent attempt to assert more control and claim more territory in the region, according to an article by Kris Osborne on military.com.
“This makes me a little nervous actually. I don’t really understand what undersea resources for China has to do with the U.S. but I’m sure there won’t be a war unless absolutely necessary,” said student Quay Rivers.
The U.S. mission conducted a mission specifically aimed at monitoring Chinese activities on three islands that months ago were reefs barely peaking above the waves. Now there are massive Chinese construction projects that the U.S. fears will soon be fully functioning military installations, according to Sciutto.
Both Japan and the Philippines are locked in territorial rows with China as well. Japan has overlapping claims with China over the Senkaku Islands, known to Beijing as the Diaoyu.
The Philippines, which is close to the artificial reefs, has called on the U.S. for a “stronger commitment” to protecting them from Chinese aggression, according to an article by Caroline Mortimer in The Independent.
The Philippines, meanwhile, has engaged in a territorial spat with China over resource-rich parts of the South China Sea, which Manila (capital of the Philippines) calls the West Philippine Sea. Manila has already sought international arbitration to resolve the dispute, according to GMA News.
Philippine Defense Minister Voltaire Gazmin said he would meet U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter in Hawaii to ask for a stronger commitment: “I will ask about the extent of the assistance they will give us, what they can do to help us because right now we are being oppressed.”
“The US Navy is reportedly considering sending ships within 12 miles of the man-made islands, thereby entering into what China claims is now sovereign territory. With Chinese naval and maritime patrol vessels in the waters, intimidation or harassment of US ships could lead to a collision, with each side responding in turn,” stated Yale University Professor Michael Auslin in an article he wrote for The Commentator.
“I think it is scary to put us in a position to be in a war, but if the leader of our country plus other people in power think it is necessary who am I to say it is wrong?” asked CSUSB staff member Nicholas Parks.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe expressed opposition to Chinese reclamation activities in disputed territories in the West Philippine Sea.
Abe’s remarks came a few days after President Barack Obama urged regional powers, particularly China, to respect the law and stop “throwing elbows” in dealing with the sea dispute, according to Calonzo.