Ashton Carter, U.S. Defense Secretary issued a warning of a possible conflict in the South China Sea based on military buildup and land reclamation efforts in the area. Carter was speaking at a defense forum at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in California. Merely a week ago, U.S. was warned by China when an American sea vessel enter disputed waters. U.S. maintains that the no other nation had issues, rather felt safer with American sea vessels in the waters. US Officials responded to the Chinese warning by stating that the navy was on a mission to explore freedom of navigation in those waters and that the mission will continue regardless of any warning. Carter stated that U.S. operations will continue in the South China Sea and that the operations were in response to Russian “aggression”. Cater said,
The United States joins virtually everyone else in the region in being deeply concerned about the pace and scope of land reclamation in the South China Sea. [U.S. is worried about] the prospect of further militarization, as well as the potential for these activities to increase the risk of miscalculation or conflict among claimant states.
The United States and Russia have not been getting along especially since both nations developed opposing visions as to the resolution of the current Syrian Crisis. China and U.S. seem to be having troubles as well because the main claimant to South China Sea is none other than China herself. China has an increased military buildup in the waters as well, developing manmade islands and military bases on top of those. According to the U.S., both China and Russia are strategically present in the sea with Russia presenting the most imminent danger. However, if U.S. continues to patrol South China Sea as they are, China may feel threatened one way or the other. Tensions are already mounting, and the minutest misunderstanding could lead to a devastating conflict.
In response to Chinese and Russia military posture, the United States has been busy modernizing her plethora of weapons including the nuclear arsenal. U.S. continues to invest in drone technologies and long-range bomber, as well as newer and modern systems for electronic warfare. On that front Carter said,
We’re updating and advancing our operational plans for deterrence and defense given Russia’s changed behavior.
Hopefully, it will not come to a conflict however, if the South China Sea is claimed by the Chinese, U.S. should respect that. The fact that no other surrounding nation has a problem with that should be irrelevant. Especially, if this equation heightens the prospect of a conflict.You can follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+ for more updates. Otherwise fill in the subscription box above, or subscribe to our RSS Feed.