China is to increase its maritime surveillance and alarm bells will be ringing in Japan
Lee Jay Walker
Modern Tokyo Times
The government of China is intent on spreading its power projection and installing more clout over disputed islands and islets with several regional nations. China announced major plans which are to be implemented over the next five years. The government of China is clearly not aiming this new change at any one regional nation however part of this plan is aimed at the disputed Senkaku/Diaoyu islands with Japan.
The modernization of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and all divisions within the armed forces of China is an ongoing reality. China clearly views the situation to be self-defensive but tensions over these disputed islands alongside the Spratlys, and other sensitive areas, with other regional nations, is hindering China’s future sphere of influence.
China also believes that time is on the side of China because America’s spiraling debt and Japan’s lack of leadership and internal demographic and economic issues; means that powers in Beijing believe that only an energetic China can expand its zone of interest.
Also, China which owes a huge amount of America’s debt is also spreading its power over Taiwan because of the ever increasing volume of trade. China is hoping that Taiwan will be sucked into China’s orbit and that a careful nationalist policy under central control will further eradicate and zap the energy of Taiwan.
Japan’s policy over the disputed Senkaku/Diaoyu islands is seen to be in a flux because the political merry-go-round means that you don’t have any long-term binding policies.
More important, China is fully aware that Japan is involved with territorial disputes with all regional powers and the Russian Federation and South Korea are also weary of Japan’s intentions.
The Russian Federation clearly is increasing its stranglehold over the disputed territories. Also, the Russian Federation understands that Japan over relies on Middle East oil therefore leaders in Moscow believe that they hold all the aces.
Sun Shuxian, China Marine Surveillance, commented that the frequency of sea patrols would be more frequent in order “to strengthen law enforcement in Chinese-related waters.”
Sun Shuxian also gave information about another 36 inspection ships being added to China’s Marine Surveillance and another 1,000 personnel would be recruited in order to monitor important and sensitive areas. He reported that these measures would be implemented over the next five years.
China also believes that America’s containment of Japan will continue and this will restrict Japan’s hand because America would not desire to become embroiled in a major dispute between China and Japan.
It must be added that these tensions are nothing new but China in the past was hindered by an outdated military and limited economic and political leverages.
However, the new China since Deng Xiaoping is based on economic expansion and now this is being backed by greater political power. At the same time the modernization of the armed forces of China continues to grow and the military budget is able to meet this military modernization.
China does not desire an open conflict with any regional nation and they hope that natural power projections based on trade and energy links will increase China’s influence.
China also understands that Japan’s dispute with the Russian Federation is hindering Japan’s energy policy and this applies to being over reliant on oil from the Middle East.
Japanese politicians may bluster but unlike the one-party-state in China which can implement genuine long-term policies. It appears that the political leadership in Japan is unable to do the same and because of major structural problems within the economic and political system; then China believes that power projection in these disputed areas belongs to Beijing and not Tokyo.