A severe crisis is brewing in the South China Sea. As many readers realize, China has (in a move that defies objective reality and past international maritime precedents) claimed sovereignty over virtually the entire South China Sea. This is a massive and very bellicose action by China. The Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan and Vietnam have as much right to the South China Sea as China as these nations also border that body of water. Japan and India rely on the South China Sea for unfettered maritime commerce as does the USA and many other nations. China’s claim is a threat to all these other nations.
However, China is very serious about pushing its bellicose claims. Previous posts have noted that China is building artificial islands in the South China Sea to assert its claim to the South China Sea. So far the USA, its allies and all other nations in the region have done, effectively, nothing to challenge China’s claim. If they are going to do so, they better do so soon, as China, by building a series of artificial islands under its control in the South China Sea, is creating “facts on the ground,” or rather, “facts at sea.” Personally, I think China is pushing the USA and other nations to see how far China can go without being challenged. I also feel China is likely amazed at the passivity and timidity of the responses by the USA and other nations to China’s actions to date. That may be about to change as these links detail.
As an aside, I think a president like FDR, Truman, Eisenhower or Reagan would have reacted aggressively to China’s bellicose actions right at the start, but in a proportionate manner. As soon as China starting building artificial islands in the South China Sea to use as military or civilian bases, I think any of these strongly pro-American presidents would have started, in concert with other regional allies, to build Allied bases in the South China Sea’s islands as well. The lack of any meaningful response so far by President Obama and allied nations has only encouraged China to become even more aggressive.
The first link reports that some of the Chinese artificial islands now have runways “that can accommodate China’s biggest military aircraft, along with port facilities and dozens of multistory buildings.” It also adds that the USA is apparently just watching this happen. If China has built up these remote islands and atolls to such an extent this fast, they are on a vigorous military mission to defend their claim to the South China Sea. The second link reports that China has warned the USA about American efforts to even monitor China’s feverish building program on the islands of the South China Sea. I think the policy of the Obama administration has been a vain hope that China was only bluffing in this matter. China’s actions show it is not bluffing. The title of this same article in the print version of the USA Today was “China warns US to keep out.” That captures the military warning that China just gave the USA. China has basically “called out” the USA in the matter of the South China Sea, and said to the USA and all other nations: “What are you going to do about it?” If the USA and other nations falter and offer no equally-firm response to China’s actions, China will have exposed President Obama, the USA and the other allied nations as “paper tigers” that no one need take seriously. If the USA and its allies do nothing to challenge China’s claims, I wouldn’t be surprised to see China demanding all international shipping to pay transit tolls to traverse the South China Sea once China has its military forces in place on this island bases. That would be a logical next step in China’s assertion of sovereignty over the South China Sea.
The third link, fourth link and fifth link report that the Pentagon is now considering a plan to get more aggressive in sending ships and planes to assert freedom-of-navigation rights in the South China Sea and challenge China’s actions. I have little doubt that America’s allies in the Pacific Rim are are strongly urging behind closed doors that the USA better “do something” soon. Given China’s warlike attitudes, actions by the USA and its allies to show they do not recognize any claim of China to the South China Sea could lead to a regional war. As I’ve suggested in previous posts, that may be exactly what China wants. China has built what looks like a world-class, modern military force which, when allied to Russia, looks like it could challenge the USA. However, China’s military weaponry has not been tested under real combat conditions and its military personnel lack any real combat experience. Their military looks great on the parade ground, but can it fight? China needs a regional war to field-test its new weaponry and its military personnel. Perhaps that is why China has been so “over-the-top” in its claims in the South China Sea. I also think China very much wants a chance to test its new, anti-carrier supersonic cruise missiles, its new anti-carrier ballistic missiles, new torpedoes, etc. against an American aircraft carrier in a real battle. Provoking a fight in the South China Sea makes strategic and tactical sense for China. It would be a regional war in “China’s backyard” so China could bring numerous land-based warplanes into the battle as well. If such a war went badly, they could gracefully back down and withdraw their claims. If the war went well for China, they could assert their claims and go even further with them. However, China could miscalculate. If China succeeded in sinking a US carrier, the American people may have a “remember Pearl Harbor” or a “remember the Maine” response and demand all-out war with China. This situation is a dangerous one and it is getting more dangerous. We have reached the point where Obama, the USA and its allies need to take firm action soon or they will be labeled “wimps” in the eyes of the world.
It is my view that an all-out, global world war III between Russia, China, Iran and their allies on one side and the USA, NATO and their western allies on the other, as prophesied in Ezekiel 38-39 will not take place until after the ministry and deaths of The Two Witnesses [see my article by that title for information about these supernaturally-powerful prophets foretold in Revelation 11 to come in the end of days]; however, I could be wrong in that assessment. It is also possible that while the all-out war will occur at the very end of our age, that does not rule out smaller, regional wars between the two rival world alliances in the prelude to the eventual fulfillment of Ezekiel 38-39. That is actually already happening. Russia has been waging a regional war vs. western-leaning Ukraine and has already gobbled up the Crimea and effectively taken over a part of eastern Ukraine. Iran is engaged in regional wars in Iraq, Syria (via its alliances with Assad and its Hezbollah proxies), Yemen (via its Houthi proxies), and is promoting rebellions and civil wars wherever it can do so to its advantage in the Mideast. With Russia and Iran already engaged in regional wars, why should China remain inactive any longer? The prophesied Gog-Magog alliance of Ezekiel 38-39 alliance is coming to life.