Washington has dismal bilateral relations with Russia, China and other sovereign independent nations.
Things got worse with the ordered closure of Russia’s San Francisco consulate along with annex buildings in Washington in New York.
For the first time, the US Pacific Command developed a schedule for South China Sea naval patrols, claiming its freedom of navigation operations right (FONOPS).
Beijing considers the intrusion of US warships in or near its waters provocative. Weeks earlier, its Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said
“(u)nder the pretext of ‘freedom of navigation,’ the US (sends) military vessels into China’s territorial waters off the Xisha Islands without (its) approval.”
Washington “violated Chinese law and relevant international law, infringed upon China’s sovereignty, and disrupted the peace, security and order of the relevant waters.”
Beijing “is dissatisfied with, and opposed to, the relevant behavior of the US side…(It’s) deliberately stirring up troubles in the South China Sea, as well as running in the opposite direction from countries in the region who aspire for stability, cooperation and development.”
China considers the invasion of US warships in its territorial waters “trespass(ing).”
How would Washington react if Russian or Chinese warships provocatively entered the Gulf of Mexico, or positioned themselves off America’s east or west coast? US hawks would likely consider the intrusion an act of war.
Yet US warships provoke China near its Xisha and Nansha Islands repeatedly, antagonizing Russia as well by their Black Sea intrusions.
The Pentagon’s last South China Sea provocation occurred on August 10 – the USS (Admiral) John McCain accompanied by two P-8 Poseidon maritime reconnaissance planes. Air support may accompany future intrusions.
Pacific Command officials confirmed their intention to conduct FONOPS two or three times monthly – to confront China’s sovereignty over its South China Sea islands and surrounding waters.
Beijing is certain to respond appropriately to repeated US provocations – as would America under similar circumstances.
Hawkish generals in charge of Trump’s geopolitical agenda worsened relations with Russia and China – increasing the chance for confrontation with both countries.
My newest book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
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