Sunday, November 24, 2013

(UPDATED) (OT) China Declares Airspace Restrictions Over Senkaku Islands

(UPDATE-2) Two B52 bombers out of the base in Guam flew over the airspace over Senkaku Island as part of regular training, without informing the Chinese. (from Wall Street Journal, 11/26/2013)

(UPDATE) According to Yomiuri (11/26/2013), China's newly declared ADIZ includes the airspace used by the US military stationed in Japan. The US Department of Defense spokesman said that the US military has been conducting the training in the area, and the US will not submit flight plans to China as demanded by China.


China seems to think they have Japan (and the US behind it) all figured out, and is confident that it can get away with it.

The Air Defense Identification Zone, or ADIZ is already in place by the Japanese government over Senkaku Islands. Japan's ADIZ is almost identical to the airspace set by the US military, according to the Japanese wiki on ADIZ.

From The Guardian (11/23/2013; part, emphasis is mine):

China imposes airspace restrictions over Japan-controlled Senkaku islands: China says it is exercising self-defence right but experts say move will exacerbate tension between the two nations

China has tried to establish its authority over Japanese-controlled islands in the East China sea by demanding that all aircraft flying in the region obey its rules or face "emergency defensive measures".

The East China sea air defense identification zone came into effect from 10am local time on Saturday when the Chinese defence ministry issued a map of the area, which includes the uninhabited East China sea islands.

The ministry said all aircraft entering the zone must notify Chinese authorities and warned they would be subject to emergency military measures if they did not identify themselves or obey orders.

It said it would "identify, monitor, control and react to" any air threats or unidentified flying objects coming from the sea.

"China's armed forces will adopt defensive emergency measures to respond to aircraft that do not cooperate in the identification or refuse to follow the instructions," it added.

...But Narushige Michishita, director of the security and international studies programme at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies in Tokyo, said: "China is playing a dangerous game here. It is certainly an escalatory action and might prolong and exacerbate the ongoing tension."

(Full article at the link)

Japan's Asahi (11/24/2013) has actual quotes from both Japanese and Chinese officials:

...“Japan’s ADIZ [Air Defense Identification Zone] is a ‘trench in the air’ that is illegally occupying our country’s territory. To break the ADIZ is the first step to protect the sovereignty of the Diaoyu Islands (Chinese name of Senkaku Islands),” Liang Fang, a professor of strategy at PLA (People’s Liberation Army) National Defense University, told the Global Times this month. The newspaper is published under the auspices of the People’s Daily, mouthpiece of the Chinese Communist Party.

...China is also bolstering its military capabilities, especially by building aircraft carriers and developing new ballistic missiles, partly to deter U.S. forces from approaching areas around Senkaku Islands.

China’s establishment of the ADIZ seems to be a way of discouraging U.S. military aircraft from approaching Chinese territorial airspace,” a Japanese government official said.

On the day that China announced its ADIZ, Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera held an executives’ meeting in the Defense Ministry.

Those who attended the Nov. 23 meeting confirmed that the ASDF will continue to patrol the skies around Senkaku Islands in the same way as before. Those activities include scrambles if Chinese aircraft enter Japan’s ADIZ.

After the meeting, Onodera voiced extreme concern about China’s latest move.

The unilateral declaration of the ADIZ without having any consultation with neighboring countries is an issue that we have to protest against. If an incident takes place in the ADIZ, it could trigger a dangerous situation,” Onodera told reporters.

“I wonder whether Chinese aircraft will scramble when a (Japanese) SDF plane enters airspace claimed by China as its ADIZ. We need to see how China will operate its ADIZ,” a Japanese Defense Ministry official said.

(Full article at the link)

After the last-minute deal on Syria where the US president was outsmarted by the Russian president, and the latest nuclear deal with Iran despite the protest from the US's allies in the Middle East, China may be thinking the US is such a pushover and a wimp, and now's the time.

South Korea is not too happy with China's newly expanded ADIZ either, which now covers the territory claimed by both South Korea and China, according to Asahi (Japanese).


Paveway Mk IV said...

All the Chinese are doing is suggesting lethal force against potential intruders and that "... they would be subject to emergency military measures if they did not identify themselves or obey orders..." Palestinians have to do that to go to different parts of their own towns for fifty years. Hell, I have to do that in the U.S. on my own land.

Anonymous said...

Except China is doing it over the territory it doesn't own.

Paveway Mk IV said...

Yeah, that was kind of my point...

Maju said...

But Japan has illegally taken possession of that disputed territory in a clear provokation to China, whose interests as superpower or great power are extremely high in relation to Taiwan and other islands that would either grant them free access to the ocean or cut China from open sea access.

I believe that if China is willing to test the imperial mettle somewhere, even to the point of open war, it is precisely on the issue of Taiwan and neighboring islands, because those are most critical for China's free access to the ocean and therefore to most resources.

Notice that when I write "imperial", I refer to the USA - Japan (even if formally still a "empire") is quite irrelevant (a mere puppet) in all this. This is Cold War II and is being capitalized as we speak.

For China, Central Asia and Siberia have some relevance too (and that's why the USA entered Afghanistan and set bases in its neighbors) but much much more critical is free access to the Pacific (i.e. Taiwan and neighboring islands) and the Indian Ocean up to the Persian Gulf (i.e. the "chain of pearls" and the issue of the South China Sea atolls). Their viability as new great power depends on that, so they will fight if they must, no doubt (even if China tends to avoid armed conflicts, among other reasons because they are expensive and often useless).

You guys talk as if Japan owns the islands or as if it would have a clear legitimate claim to them. That's not the case at all and in fact Japan is the one provoking China by taking unilateral nationalist-imperialist steps towards actually exerting such control, something that China simply cannot accept and won't accept.

Of course the dark hand of Uncle Sam is most likely behind all this mess. I wonder if they know what they're doing at all but what is clear is that the USA has much stronger reasons to "block" Chinese access to the seas, because this is a game between Washington and Beijing for global hegemony.

China's GDP will surpass that of the USA in few years (2016 counting PPP, maybe 2021 counting nominal). This situation is way too similar to what happened between Germany and Britain before WWI: Germany became the first economic powerhouse, displacing Britain, and the resulting tension eventually erupted in WWI, which Britain won (with some help) thanks to their colonial Empire and naval hegemony.

Similarly today the USA has a huge colonial empire and China attempts to dispute it, not by conquest, but much as Germany used to back in the day, by means of strategical investment in the semi-independent states. However the US Empire is by no means the closed system of Britain/France but a neocolonial one, much more permeable to such strategies. However the naval hegemony issue is still open and those islets are the scenario of the global showdown.

Thinking in terms of nationalist claims is absolutely erroneous. Those are just formal expressions of geostrategical needs. And for Japan all this is pretty much irrelevant, except because it is a puppet of the USA.

Anonymous said...

Maju, China didn't bother to "dispute" until late 1960s, when the talk of potentially huge gas and oil reserve around the islands came about. Japan claimed the islands in 1895. The islands were private property, owned by Japanese citizens until the Noda administration decided to purchase from them.

But don't worry. China has been selected to be the world leader by globalists. I'm sure they will prevail.

Biff said...

" confident that it can get away with it." Unfortunately, because they CAN, & will continue to. The USA esp., along with its allies, have been complying to acquiesce to China incremental, increasing China-establishment empowerment, while simultaneously steadily disarming, militarily AND economically, North America. The recent armed exercises & intelligence-sharing in Hawaii, the massive amounts of mainland USA resources, businesses, & LAND which they are scooping up...China is now on the UN Human Rights council...hah!
Also, China is planning to run & command a globalist NWO government; they have no desire to share with the West...America, LONG-since "the No. 1 Enemy". Their future attack, which the Western globalists are luring them into through all of this enabling/sharing while the Chinese scramble to catch up to Western military tech levels, will be in cooperation with the Russians, whom they will then turn against & betray. They want it all.

Maju said...

The actual original point of the dispute is the end of WWII. The allies signed the Potsdam Declaration with the following text:

"Japanese sovereignty shall be limited to the islands of Honshū, Hokkaidō, Kyūshū, Shikoku and such minor islands as we determine".

Further treaties have not been clarifying at all in the case of the Diaoyu/Senkaku islets dispute. Certainly China, one of the allies, never recognized Japanese sovereignty on this matter, neither did Taiwan/ROC nor (explicitly) the USA nor the USSR/Russia.

The position of Japan is to obviate WWII and its consequences. It's also obviating the fact that China is the regional power and the effective second global superpower (heading towards first position very fast).

I'm not particularly pro-China but it really pisses me off when Japanese and supposed "friends of Japan" (of the kind that help to hide the dire consequences of Fukushima for the sake of extend and pretend) ignore all that and treat the matter as if the islands were unquestionably Japanese, and as if all the recent maneuvers by Japan to gain de facto control of them are not in fact a direct provocation to Beijing - or even something that favors the most hawkish elements in China by pushing this country to an open military confrontation.

"The islands were private property"...

(1) Private property does not matter in issues of sovereignty.

(2) That "private property" claim only exists within the Japanese legal frame; internationally there's no such recognition, much less by a country like China which theoretically (less so in practice nowadays) reneges of private property.

"China has been selected to be the world leader by globalists".

Sure, whatever - *rolls eyes* - US and Europe based "globalists" will surrender their privileges of five centuries of global plunder to those "slant-eyed startups" just because, c'mon!

While I reckon it may be futile to suggest you this, I would think you'd benefit from grasping the notion of "imperialism", which was probably most deeply analyzed by Lenin. He explained quite lucidly how imperialisms, confronted with each other, are the natural result of the development of Capitalism. Sadly he could not foresee how his own creation and other regimes originally inspired in it (i.e. China) would become nationalist-imperialist powers themselves, using the "workers' revolution" as platform for the development of their own national bourgeoisies, with their own imperialist goals.

So don't worry: the Eurocentric imperialist bourgeois alliance organized around the USA will not surrender anything to China if they can help it. Their goal is to consolidate and perpetuate the currently hegemonic NATO-plus Empire for as long as possible. Ancient Rome and not at all Ancient China is the historical mirror they see themselves in.

"China is now on the UN Human Rights council...hah!"

So is the USA (cf. Guantanamo, Afghanistan, Iraq, Palestine, stop and frisk, NSA surveillance, paramilitary groups, Honduras, Colombia, Texas death penalty, etc.) And so are so many other dubious regimes like Malaysia, Bahrain (c'mon!), Pakistan, Ukraine, Chile, Saudi Arabia (the paradise of human rights, ahem!), Turkey or Spain.

You guys see things with very peculiar-colored glasses, it seems to me.

Anonymous said...

Chína is giving Abe some nice carts to play with. With this new 'threat' it will be for Abe much easier to get his plans thru; secrecy law and bigger army. You would almost think China is doing Abe a favor...
Japan is becoming in this way more and more a polic state with some fascist edges. Just keep the populace scared, that works the best to push some new laws which will take more and more rights and privicy away from you.
China is not stupid, they will not go to war for these islands. If they go to war, it has a different reason and it is always a financial / economic reason, as every war is.
Friends of Japan? Who might that be? The US? Ehhh, think twice and answer the following question: Which country is more important for US trade? Japan or China ?

Anonymous said...

China, Vietnam and North Korea are the greatest thieves to its people and bloody aggressors to the world at present time, "Don't listen to what the communists say, but look at what they do."

Anonymous said...

The rotten communist mindset China is threatening the whole world with its ambition and stupidity.

Anonymous said...

...whereas capitalist US, with its military industrial complex supported by taxes as if it were a socialist country in the country, was protecting the world peace when it waged its wars from 1774 onwards (see "us wars" in wikipedia, the list is just too long).

netudiant said...

To the extent that all of these countries share lots of cultural and economic background, it would surely make sense for them to set up a combined ADIZ, covering the entire area. Maybe throw in the Philippines and Viet Nam as well, to cover the South China Sea.
That would provide a way for all the players to show their muscle without causing incidents or accidents.
Maybe the UN should provide a budget version, based on surveillance satellites. It might bring home the childishness of this dispute. I think the US and Russia would both be interested in providing that, if asked.

Anonymous said...

You're mentioning of Russia does bring up a point, netudiant.

We always hear of Russian bombers infringing on Japanese airspace. Do the Russians ever fly over Diaoyu/Senkaku?

Perhaps they should.

A good idea: each of the aforementioned countries should rotate their flights thru the ADIZ daily, repeatedly .. 'til they get it out of their system. While doing so they can constantly identify themselves to each other. Constantly.

Biff said...

@ Maju, above, Nov. 25 12:35AM
"You guys...very peculiar-colored glasses" quoting one small, out-of-context excerpt of my original posting which was not necessarily at all directed towards YOU, you are 'lumping me in', with whomever it is you are conversing/arguing/rebutting with? Yes, the Police States of America & China are both members of the UN Council. & that crosses your points, how? "You guys"...who is being presumptuous? Condescending? Simply because I am addressing the same topic. Just, don't size me up, a stranger on the internet, like the TSA does. More than enough people whom I know & who I don't that I encounter on the street, do that enough as it is. Thanks.

Maju said...


You both accused China of being at the summit of a "globalist" conspiration. What's even "globalist", isn't that just a way to name capitalism while still pretending that somehow there's some sort of small scale apple-pie-town Capitalism that is not globalizing (empirically globalizing rather than ideologically globalist).

There may be some subtle differences but you two seem to agree that China is somehow the pinnacle of "globalism" somehow. Nice way to ignore the role of the USA in globalization and imperialism.

You seem to attempt to say something meaningful and slightly different from the previous guy but I guess got lost in translation from your Tea Party style Newspeak into English, sorry.

Peculiar glasses indeed those of Far Right Newspeak.

Biff said...

OK, so again you 'accuse' me of something, while this time at least admitting that you are uncertain as to my definition or use of the term "globalism". I mention this because, no, globalism is not merely some alternative way to name capitalism, or communism, or socialism, or any other SPECIFIC political ideology. Basically, it's with a one-world-gov NWO in mind. When I did elaborate about China's undeniable power, it was to emphasize, yes, the West's already established, globalist power...that is, USA/UK/Israel, predominantly. I was acknowledging, & agreeing with you, that the USA-led globalism is THE monster. No idea what is in that other commenter's head. However, as I concluded, China has always wanted it all, & is swiftly catching up...
Also, don't ASSume that I identify with or relate to, ANY so-called politically-sided ideology, i.e. "Tea Party style/ Far Right Newspeak". OR "lefty/liberal". As I most certainly do NOT, thanks... left, right, it's all the same theatrical bullshit (hence my initial point of expanding upon "globalism" in the first place). By your accusatory approach, however, you have made your pretensions abundantly clear. Thanks again.

Anonymous said...

Maju, does it ever occur to you that you may be wearing peculiar colored glasses without realizing it?

Maju said...

@Biff: Capitalism (or if you wish just "Capital", as Marx chose to describe it, "Capitalism" is a derived word in fact) is not an ideology but a socio-economic reality that has driven human history for the last 200 years or more, and its main traits are in opposition to Feudalism (i.e. urban, industrial, some class mobility, extreme importance of money and trade, etc.) There's some debate on whether the term can be applied to the former "socialist" USSR (state capitalism or deformed worker state?) but it's clear like water that it fully applies to modern post-Maoist China, which does not even have a public health care system, no matter how high they rise the red banner.

Capitalism, with a few privileged exceptions, has always used the state as support for the national development (otherwise the result is invariably colonization by foreign powers). Some state economy is not opposed to capitalism but actually necessary (even in the USA much of the economy is driven by state spending, and hence the monumental public debt - same in Japan, for example).

"I was acknowledging, & agreeing with you, that the USA-led globalism is THE monster".

Maybe I judged you wrong but I still find very slippery and confusing the kind of imprecise and ideologically-loaded language you choose to use.

Mind you that I do not judge who is "the monster". Both sides are criticable and I certainly do not expect much from a Chinese rising among superpowers (other than maybe some balance). All I say is that the issue of free access to the oceans, reversing the colonial impositions of the infamous Opium Wars, is critical to China as it rises from its ashes into a global-sized power and that this issue cannot be sidelined in the discussion. I also say that Japanese nationalist viewpoints on the matter are irrelevant and wrongly stated, that the conflict begins with the Potsdam declaration for what we care: Japan surrendered unconditionally and neighbors like China, Korea or Philippines are still awaiting for a sincere apology re. Japanese war crimes, something that the Japanese nationalist viewpoints simply disregards.

Something that is said that differentiates humans (and maybe other semi-intelligent species) from the bulk of animals is the ability to take someone else's place, wear someone else's shoes, as I believe it's said colloquially. Many Japanese seem absolutely unwilling to do that and that is clearly a flaw.

Said that, it happens in all nations, of course, but it is a very immature attitude in any case.

Anonymous said...

This must be referring to no intention to enter Chinese national airspace,

“The U.S. military will continue conducting flight operations in the region, including with our allies and partners, and will not in any way change how we conduct our operations as a result of this new policy,” Warren told reporters.

“When we fly into this ADIZ we will not register a flight plan, we will not identify our transponder, our radio frequency and logo,” Warren said.

.. "Japan operates its own ADIZ that extends 200 miles from its territory."

Anonymous said...

re: anon's claim that - "...China didn't bother to "dispute" [the Senkaku islands] until late 1960s, when the talk of potentially huge gas and oil reserve around the islands came about."

i find it quite rich for people to claim that china had no interest in reclaiming the senkaku islands until oil was discovered in the 60s. that may or may not have been the catalyst, but the fact was that china was so weak before that time that whatever territorial claims it made was almost irrelevant.

the allies who won the war - including russia - were the ones who carved up the globe, as it is custom after wars.

both "china"s were weak: the recognized "china" at that time - taiwan; and mainland china. they had little bargaining power, and was shoved around by the larger powers.

c.f. taiwan tried to stop the united nations from recognizing mongolia as an independent nation (which they asserted was part of china), but eventually they were forced to fully lose mongolia by russia. if they couldn't retain mongolia, i doubt they would have fared better in reclaiming senkaku islands.

most peaceful solution: make ryukyu an independent nation, and give senkaku to them

netudiant said...

Were it not for the reality that China and Japan both claim these little island, there would be a template for managing the area, air space and offshore resources included.
St Pierre and Miquelon is a French territory, two tiny islands just off Newfoundland. They have a large swath of continental shelf and fishing rights under international law, but all traffic and shipping rules are worked out jointly with Canada. The issue here is that China does not believe Japan has rights to these islands. Surprisingly, the US sort of agrees, hence the plaintive statements by the State Dept that the dispute should be settled by negotiations. If the status were clear, there would be no need to dignify the situation with an admission that negotiations were needed.
Ideally, someone should discover some hyper rare plant or creature on the islands and help it become a World Heritage site under UN ownership.

Paveway Mk IV said...

China's central bank has $16B on the books. Japan and US: barely a third of that. Its all fake, but theirs is bigger than ours.

Hint: The war is over. We - Japan and the US - already lost. Japan's only hope is yet *another* war, which will probably anihilate the better part of Japan and its neighbors and bring the US to its knees.

Go nuclear over the frickin' worthless Senkaku? Why not. Things could not possibly get any more idiotic at this point in time.

Paveway Mk IV said...

Sorry. Should have said China *added* $24 trillion on their books since 2008 while Japan and US combined: a third of that.

Maju said...

"Go nuclear over the frickin' worthless Senkaku? Why not. Things could not possibly get any more idiotic at this point in time".

It's not just the islets. Actually it's not about the islets at all: this is about paving the way for Taiwan's "anschluss" (and that way securing China's free access to the ocean) by means of showing that China can effectively defeat the USA in a localized aero-naval confrontation, either by pushing, or by shoving or, if nothing of this works, maybe by smashing something.

I'd expect a shot-down airplane at some point. Maybe not now but in future months or years. They won't surely go nuclear over that (Russia will mediate and blah-blah) but it'll be such a sudden and red-coded escalation that it will get to the front pages of the international media for a long time and set the mood for the upcoming many decades: it will be the fire baptism of the second cold (but seasonally and locally very hot) war.

If Israel could sink the Liberty and get away, the much more powerful China can shoot down a couple of US (or more probably Japanese) planes and get away relatively unscathed. An escalation would mean short term a financial collapse (Chinese held US and European so-fragile bonds) and also short and mid term major technological problems (rare earth mining is concentrated in China). On the contrary, China would get serious problems getting enough oil, deriving the conflict partly to Central Asia, what would implicate Russia and India immediately. These would do their best to cool off the escalation, so in the end everything will go back to "normal" but not quite. Probably Chinese troops would be already controlling the silly islets by then and/or the clashes and loss of lives would force the sides (pushed by mediators) to consider a formal neutralization of the area.

But they won't go nuclear over that. Maybe China is willing to (???) but I doubt the USA is, even if it's trying to posture as hard as they can. It's not so central to US interests. If they have put up (reluctantly) with Cuba, they can put up with China getting improved sea access.

We have seen such conflicts (and much worse ones) before: Korea War, Vietnam and what not. They never went nuclear and they never meant to. The problem is that they do want to appear as willing to reach that point of Mutual Assured Destruction but that's like suicide, you may think of it, threaten with it, even consciously "decide" to do it... but actually doing it is, while not impossible, most extremely hard: all the rational and irrational mechanisms go against it as soon as the threat becomes too dramatically real.

That's what nuclear war has: it can blow up the planet, but everything conspires against it, because everybody loses with such an ultimate option.

If I'm wrong, then farewell...

Anonymous said...

Bloomberg provided some Official cheek for those who need that during their day. Describing U.S. bombers with unknown content as "unarmed" while quoting others describing the ADIZ as "ham-handed" AND not mentioning netudiant's Russian bombers violating airspaces must be Bloomberg's way of saying that is the modus in that area of the world.

Gotta advertise for those arms merchants!

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