US push leaves China no wiggle room

Source:Global Times Published: 2016-2-23 23:53:01

Before Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi's three-day visit to the US, which started Tuesday, hyperbole about China's "militarization" of islands in the South China Sea was ramping up among US media. The Washington Post, by analyzing satellite images on Monday, said China may be building a new high-frequency radar system on Huayang Reef. Although it admitted that the system could be used for both military and civilian purposes, the article is more inclined to depict this installation as a Chinese threat to regional peace and stability.

As of press time, Chinese authorities have not confirmed the authenticity of the installation of the radar system. If it is real, we think China is in a legitimate position to conduct this move, even if it is for military purposes. China has the right to build radar systems on its own soil to discover and track possible threats - a way to defend national security instead of an aggressive act. It has nothing to do with the more assertive militarization.

The true examples of militarization can be found in Okinawa and Guam, which are heavily garrisoned by the US, whose projection of power can extend in a radius of thousands of kilometers. They serve Washington's military hegemony as pivots. China meanwhile only updates its facilities on these islands from anti-aircraft artillery to HQ-9 missiles, and from telescopes to radar. They are solely for defense.

If Washington keeps regarding these normal upgrades and deployments of military forces as a threat, and sends warships to the West Pacific, does it expect China to respond with our bare hands? 

The US should show respect to China as a major power, recognizing its basic rights to grow in strength. The US should recalibrate its parameters while observing China.

China is neither the first nor the only party that has engaged in massive construction works on South China Sea islands and reefs.

Compared with other claimants, China has an edge in this endeavor, a simple reflection of its stronger national capability.

It is quite insulting that China, the second-largest economy, keeps being reprimanded by the US as it is deploying basic military facilities. If the US refuses to change its perspective, China has no alternative but to continue in this way in hopes that it will eventually force the US to change its mind.

The US putting a gloss on its muscle-flexing in the South China Sea as "defending freedom of navigation" is simply hypocritical.

China should warn the US that more military installations will be set up in response to Washington's provocations.

As an outsider, Washington is stirring choppy waters in the region, and framing China as a peace breaker.

Actually, China's restraint, rationality and compliance with international laws are the major reason that the South China Sea can sustain peace through these years. What a mischievous Washington aims for is a strategic game with a rising China.

Posted in: Editorial

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