China vs US Alliance in West PH Sea

Commentary: The poor timing of the validity claims on EDCA by these unpatriotic senators are as outrageous and preposterous as the China claims on South China Sea.

Don’t you care what will happen to our military sovereignty’s defense against China when you invalidate EDCA with the US?

The Philippines has to choose between sovereignty and security. She cannot have it both ways.

See Chinese Submarines
US Navy Admiral Harris Commentary
Latest News Updates
Sovereignty or Security?

Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago on Thursday said she and 12 other senators had signed her draft resolution expressing the view that the Philippines’ Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (Edca) with the United States would be invalid without the Senate’s concurrence.

With the majority’s support, Santiago, chair of the Senate committee on foreign relations, said she would soon file the resolution stating that “the RP-US Edca treaty requires Senate concurrence, in order to be valid and effective.”

“Behold the Senate breaks its silence. The fact that we have not made a hue and cry about the Edca has apparently been misconstrued as acquiescence. In this resolution, we are saying that we will not allow the power of the Senate to be eroded,” she said in a statement.

The other senators who have signed the draft resolution are Sonny Angara, Pia Cayetano, JV Ejercito, Jinggoy Estrada, Teofisto Guingona III, Lito Lapid, Ferdinand Marcos Jr., Sergio Osmeña III, Aquilino Pimentel III, Ralph Recto, Ramon Revilla Jr. and Cynthia Villar.

Once adopted, the resolution would be sent to the Supreme Court as the Senate’s position on the validity of the Edca. The high court is deliberating on petitions questioning the agreement.

Santiago said the Senate majority’s support was an assertion that the President shared with the Senate the power to enter into treaties or international agreements, such as the Edca.

‘Constitutional mystery’

Malacañang has taken the position that the Edca is an executive agreement and not a treaty, and thus does not need the Senate’s concurrence. It said it was an implementing agreement of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) and the Mutual Defense Treaty.

Under the Edca, US military forces would have access to and use of agreed locations in the Philippines, and could construct infrastructure. They could also preposition assets here.

“It is absurd to claim that the Edca is an implementing agreement to the VFA, which, in the first place, is alleged to be the implementing agreement to the ancient Mutual Defense Treaty. Moreover, the United States does not even recognize the VFA as a treaty,” Santiago said.

Malacañang’s contention that the Edca is an “executive agreement” is a “constitutional mystery,” the resolution said.

The only constitutional basis for the Palace’s position on Edca is the provision referring to “all cases involving the constitutionality of an … executive agreement,” which is one of the items included in the list of cases that the Supreme Court has the power to decide.

“There is no other provision in the Constitution concerning a so-called executive agreement, and there is no mention at all of its definition, its requirements, the role of the Senate, or any other characteristic of, or protocol for, any such so-called executive agreement,” the resolution said.

“‘Executive agreement’ is a term wandering alone in the Constitution, bereft of provenance and an unidentified constitutional mystery,” the resolution added.

2 provisions

In contrast to the lone mention of the term “executive agreement,” the resolution pointed out, there are two provisions speaking of the need for Senate concurrence on a treaty.

The Constitution states that no treaty or international agreement shall be valid and effective unless two-thirds of the members of Senate concur with it.

Another provision states that after the 1991 expiration of the bases agreement between the Philippines and the United States, foreign military bases, troops, or facilities shall not be allowed in the country except under a treaty duly concurred in by the Senate.

Under the rules of constitutional and statutory construction, the two provisions are specific ones, while the lone provision mentioning “executive agreement” is a general one. The specific prevails over the general, the resolution stated.

“The Constitution is clear and categorical that Senate concurrence is absolutely necessary for the validity and effectivity of any treaty, particularly any treaty that promotes foreign military bases, troops and facilities, such as the Edca,” it said.

Nonnegotiable power

The draft resolution is not an attempt to force the President to submit the Edca for concurrence by the Senate, it said.

The Senate is just taking a definitive stand on the nonnegotiable power of the Senate to decide whether a treaty will be valid and effective, it added.

See 12 senators break silence: Edca invalid, needs Senate agreement
Miriam sends EDCA resolution to SC
US-Philippine Military Deal Could Face Further Delays
Artificial islands built to hide China submarines
SWS: Filipinos fear ‘armed conflict’ with China over sea row
PH, US, Japan to hold naval drills near disputed waters—report
New US-Philippine military deal, already on ice, could face further delays
The scramble against China
COMMENTARY: In defense of Inang Laya
Maritime sovereignty compromised due to gov’t neglect – military paper
What is EDCA? Look at Zambo’s PH-US joint operations
EDCA and the West Philippine Sea
DOCUMENT: Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement
Sovereignty or Security?
SC: EDCA is constitutional
VFA/EDCA needed to defend West PH Sea


Artificial islands built to hide China submarines

BEIJING: For months, China’s visible construction of artificial islands and military facilities in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea) has alarmed US officials and many of China’s neighbors. What is happening under the water is also worrisome, say several defense and security analysts.

China has a growing fleet of nuclear submarines armed with ballistic missiles. The expansion of its claim on the West Philippine Sea may be intended to create a deep-water sanctuary–known in military parlance as a “bastion”–where its submarine fleet could avoid detection.

“The South China Sea would be a good place to hide Chinese submarines,” said Carl Thayer, a US-born security specialist who has taught at the University of New South Wales and other Australian institutions. The sea floor is thousands of meters deep in places, with underwater canyons where a submarine could easily avoid detection.

Conflicts in the West Philippine Sea are expected to be a major focus of annual US-China talks that started on Tuesday in Washington, including meetings between US Secretary of State John Kerry and Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang. (See related story on page C3)

The Philippines and Japan flew patrol planes near disputed waters for the second straight day on Wednesday, defying Chinese warnings.

A Japanese P-3C Orion and a Philippine Navy Islander aircraft conducted a search and rescue drill 50 nautical miles (92.6 kilometers) northwest of Palawan, officials said.

While the flight was in the general direction of the resource-rich Recto (Reed) Bank claimed by both the Philippines and China, officials refused to say if the planes flew directly over the area…

According to Thayer, Beijing sees the South China Sea as a strategic asset because it guards China’s southern flank, including a submarine base in Sanya, on China’s Hainan island. The Chinese Navy has built underwater tunnels there to quietly dock some of its submarines, including those that carry ballistic missiles.

As of 2014, China had 56 attack submarines, including five that were nuclear- powered. It also has at least three nuclear-powered submarines capable of launching ballistic missiles, and is planning to add five more, according to a Pentagon report released last year.

In an April media briefing in Washington, a top US Navy official said the Pentagon is watching China’s ballistic submarines “very carefully.”

“Any time a nation has developed nuclear weapons and delivery platforms that can range the homeland, it’s a concern of mine,” said Adm. William Gortney, the commander of the US Northern Command. Gortney added that China has a policy of “no first use” of nuclear weapons, “which gives me a little bit of a good news picture there.”

In recent decades, China has worked to build up a nuclear deterrence capability in the shadow of that developed by the United States and Russia. Its submarine program is a major part of that push. Since submarines can often avoid detection, they are less vulnerable to a first-strike attack than land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles or nuclear bombers.

Currently, China’s JL2 submarine ballistic missiles lack the capacity of reaching continental United States from the South China Sea. But China hopes to improve the range of those missiles in coming years, which is why analysts think China sees the sea as a future “bastion” for its nuclear submarines.

Chinese submarines are known for being relatively noisy–and thus easy to detect– making it difficult for them to slip into the western Pacific without being detected. But once China improves the range of its missiles, it won’t need to move its submarines out of the South China Sea to pose a retaliatory threat to the United States.

See Artificial islands built to hide China submarines
Japan may consider South China Sea patrols – military
DND interested in acquiring maritime patrol plane from Japan
Gazmin cites need for VFA with Japan
PH-Japan naval drills not unconstitutional, says AFP


Intelligence Check: Just How ‘Preposterous’ Are China’s South China Sea Activities?

On 27 May 2015, Admiral Harry B. Harris Jr, the newly promoted Commander of the U.S. Pacific Command, said that one of his main challenges, alongside a nuclear armed and erratic North Korea, would be “China’s preposterous claims to and land reclamation activities in the South China Sea.” So now a coral reef with an airfield is as dangerous as a nuclear weapon?

Harris’ statement was widely interpreted as meaning that China was engaged in an unjustified land grab, tantamount to coercion of or even aggression against the country’s southern neighbors. Three days later, a Chinese general repeated to the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore that China has shown “great restraint” in defending its territorial claims against unreasonable derogation by its southern neighbors. China sees its actions as defensive and in no way constituting aggression. There is a highly significant discrepancy between the two assessments. If Harris is wrong about the Chinese motivation, this must represent a significant intelligence failure by the United States. There is nothing more essential to national security intelligence than a correct assessment of a potential adversary’s motivations (intent) in the military sphere.

For the record, China is a country with more than 4,000 km of coastline in the South China Sea. Under international law, it is entitled to claim an exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of 200 nm from the baselines of its territorial sea. On a rough estimate, it is entitled to around one million sq km of EEZ in the South China Sea based just on its mainland coast and the coast of Hainan Island.

A country’s international law claims to territory or maritime jurisdiction are only those articulated by its government in a formal manner. Beyond its South China Sea coast and Hainan (and minor islands close to these coastlines), and associated territorial sea and contiguous zones, China’s claims in the South China Sea have the following elements.

Territorial Claims

  1. A claim to Pratas islands which is identical in character with the claim of Taiwan, Vietnam and the Philippines.
  2. A territorial claim to the Spratly Islands and Paracel Islands which is identical in character with the claims of Vietnam and Taiwan and which, as a claim, is fully compatible with international law. Someone must own the islands. (Scarborough Shoal, which has rocks above sea level of a type that other countries have claimed as subject to sovereignty, is part of the Spratly group in Chinese claims. It is not claimed by Vietnam.)
  3. A territorial claim to the Macclesfield Bank, a small submerged featured known in Chinese as Zhongsha Islands, which does not qualify as land territory under international law and cannot be subjected to territorial sovereignty.

Of these, only the claim to Macclesfield Bank would not be in conformity with international law. Otherwise, China’s claims to territory are nor more or less preposterous than those of Vietnam. Based on research for my 1998 book, China’s Ocean Frontier, I have concluded that China’s claims to at least some of the islands are less preposterous than those of Vietnam and the Philippines, but that China’s claims to the entire Spratly group are probably not, in respect of each and every natural island, superior to those of other claimants.

One unusual problem about sovereignty claims in the Spratly Islands is that Taiwan, a political entity not recognized as a state, is an active claimant. This is further complicated by the likely implication that states which recognize Taiwan as part of “one China” are probably obliged to recognize Taiwan’s territorial rights as also adhering to “one China,” although that entity has an indeterminate status in international law.

Maritime Resource Jurisdiction

  1. A 200 nm EEZ jurisdiction from the baselines of its land territory in full conformity with international law.
  2. A claim to continental shelf jurisdiction from its land territory in full conformity with international law.

In addition, China has used the so-called nine-dashed line enclosing almost the entire South China Sea on many official maps since 1947 but it has not yet decided what, if any, legal force to ascribe to it. If it did ascribe any legal force, that would not be compatible with international law (verging on “preposterous”). Chinese officials have from time to time referred to China’s historic rights within this area but have not clarified what these might be beyond the territorial claims. The only possible historic right China could claim compatible with international law would be related to traditional fishing in another state’s recognized economic jurisdiction.

Preposterous or Not?

On balance, it is hard to see how Admiral Harris would justify use of the undiplomatic term “preposterous” in respect of the China’s current claims in the South China Sea. He may be justified in using it (in private) if China did go ahead and claim legal force of any kind to the u-shaped line. China went close to this (being “preposterous”) by including the line without any explanation or discussion in a sketched map attached to its submission on the extent of its claimed resource jurisdiction on the continental shelf which it submitted to the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf. Since the line bears no relationship to the legal criteria outlined in the required submission, it would only be fair to leave open any suggestion as to what it means. The State Department made plain in December 2014 that “China has not clarified through legislation, proclamation, or other official statements the legal basis or nature of its claim associated with the dashed-line map.” The Philippines has brought a case against China in the Court of Arbitration to seek clarification of the Chinese intent behind the dashed-line in that submission.

It is now widely known that the nine-dashed line was first used (in a slightly different form) in a map released by China in 1947 (before the Communist Party came to power). What is not widely discussed is that the Chinese move followed by less than two years the Truman Declaration in which the United States broke with pre-existing international law by claiming resources jurisdiction in the seabed of the continental shelf beyond the territorial sea. Perhaps China in 1947 was staking out a similar claim as other states rushed to emulate the revolutionary and expansionary U.S. claim.

Sources in China close to the government say that it has been unable to decide what to do about this nine-dashed line left over from history. Some constituencies in China have argued that China has “sovereignty” over all of the sea areas enclosed by the line, but the government has not endorsed this view–ever. So it has become a sensitive domestic political matter in which leaders face the accusation of being a traitor if they surrender the line. Such a charge has been publicly levied by Chinese hawks against former President Jiang Zemin for his border agreement with Russia. At the same time, there are more than a few Chinese official statements that appear to limit China’s claims to maritime resource jurisdiction to those embodied in the Law of the Sea Convention.

Land Reclamation

Admiral Harris also characterized China’s land reclamation activities as “preposterous.” By contrast, it should be noted, China regards these reclamations as examples of its “great restraint.” What significance should we attach to the reclamations?

For the record, to my knowledge, all of China’s current land reclamation is on submerged features in the vicinity of the Spratly Islands that have been the subject of Chinese physical presence for over two decades, so China has not permanently occupied new features in the last eighteen months, or even the last 20 years. A list of these features was noted in my 1998 book on the subject, China’s Ocean Frontier, as follows:

Between 1987 and 1996, the PRC occupied eight features in the Spratly group. These included Fiery Cross Reef, a totally submerged feature where the PRC in early 1988 conducted major engineering works to construct an 8000 square metre platform of concrete and steel rising two metres above the sea. It erected structures on Cuarteron Reef, Gaven Reef, Subi Reef, Dongmen Reef and Johnson Reef in 1988 and 1989 and on Mischief Reef in late 1994.

In September 2014, when new construction was revealed on Johnson Reef, a Chinese commentator echoed the Foreign Ministry by saying that the country needed to improve facilities there to make the lives of its occupants easier, but he added that China also needed an airbase to prepare for emergencies. He noted that this would be a breach by China of the 2002 Code of Conduct but that Vietnam and the Philippines had consistently breached it, and that China had shown great restraint by not using force to evict their forces form the islands and submerged features they occupied. On 9 April 2015, as CSIS in Washington observed, China acknowledged for the first time an unspecified military purpose to the reclamations.

It is hard however to credit the extreme view published by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) that a 10,000 ft. runway that China appears to be building on Fiery Cross Reef “could enable China to monitor and potentially control the airspace over the South China Sea, which would provide greater capability to exert sea control.” This to me is hypothetically possible (in terms of monitoring) but preposterous in terms of practical realities (controlling all South China Sea air space from one reef airfield against the might of the United States and its allies). This sort of overblown assessment reflects the mood in Washington and in U.S. Navy circles that borders on rage at what they see (mistakenly) as China’s destabilization without any willingness to consider that actions of Vietnam, the Philippines or the United States itself might be contributing to the instability.

The Philippines has expressed concern in 2015 that China may be planning reclamation activity in Scarborough Shoal, an underwater feature that China took control of in 2012 after repeat confrontations with Philippines vessels.

Propaganda and Intelligence

The propaganda tactic being repeatedly used by those who see China as the only provocateur is to blur complex matters of law, dates and sequencing of events to paint China in the worst possible light. China is not blameless but the hysteria coming from the anti-China camp might be seen as laughable were it not so serious. It has been well summarized by a Chinese commentator in 2014: “Manila and its Western supporters have a rather ludicrous logic that the Philippines and Vietnam can do anything on the Nansha [Spratly] Islands and China can’t take any countermeasures.” The U.S. State Department position has consistently been relatively measured and restrained. It needs to reassert some control over PACOM’s public diplomacy.

But this is not simply an institutional coordination problem in Washington. It is a serious intelligence failure on the part of the U.S. Navy leaders in the Pacific. They are expert in the Law of the Sea but they have far less expertise on the law of territorial acquisition and sovereignty. The Pentagon, and PACOM in particular, have appeared on too many occasions deeply inexpert or biased on China. In public and in private, PACOM officers too often rush to ascribe the most silly intentions to China without offering any sort of reasoned and empathetic assessment of how the Chinese might see the problem.

A new and more empathetic study of the issue from the United States government might also evaluate the reliability of the repeated reassurances from Chinese leaders that their activities in defence of the Spratly claim represent no threat to international commercial shipping. The U.S. intelligence community is capable of such a balanced study. It may exist already. The world would be a safer place if it could see such a balanced study by the U.S. intelligence community in the public domain.

See Intelligence Check: Just How ‘Preposterous’ Are China’s South China Sea Activities?
PACOM boss: China’s South China Sea claims ‘preposterous’
The New Head of the U.S. Pacific Command Talks to TIME About the Pivot to Asia and His Asian Roots
UN tribunal won’t rule on ownership of disputed territories — DFA


Confrontation looms as two fortresses rise in South China Sea

Confrontation looms as two fortresses rise in South China Sea

In just two years, China has poured billions of dollars into reclamation work and military structures on three reefs in the contested Spratlys, implying that it is there to stay.

Recently it warned the United States not to attempt to stop the construction, or “there will be war”. China needs oil badly. Without it, a slowdown of its economic growth may trigger a mammoth recession. It knows there is oil in the Spratlys, otherwise it would not risk billions of dollars and war for the island chain. To extract oil, China needs military security. Without militarisation in a volatile place claimed by other nations, extraction can be disrupted.

A US Poseidon P8 surveillance plane (a “submarine hunter”) recently braved eight warnings from China to report dredging that has reclaimed 800 hectares from the sea at the Fiery Cross Reef, as well as military barracks and piers rising 300 metres from the seabed, and search radars. A commercial plane was also warned by Chinese authorities to move away.

Taiwan Strait choke-point

The United States is so far wary of confronting China over its militarisation of the Spratlys’ reefs, but if China closes the Taiwan Strait, vital shipping lanes will be disrupted and it will be America’s turn to warn “there will be war”. Japan may also be a willing combatant since most of its precious imported oil passes through the Taiwan Strait. Remember that when Egypt tried to close the Suez Canal, a vital shipping lane, the United States and Britain were quick to move in.

What would make China close the Taiwan Strait? For one, regaining Taiwan is a continuing obsession for Beijing. But even if that is too risky to go to war over, if there is a military confrontation within a 1,000-kilometre radius, which includes the Spratlys, closing the Taiwan Strait choke-point would shield the Chinese mainland from attackers. It would take 24 hours for China to close the strait, simply by laying thousands of mines.

US response

Right now, the United States and Japan are working feverishly to install a defence system for the Luzon Strait, between the Philippines and Taiwan, in case the Taiwan Strait is closed. But the proximity of this defence system to the Chinese mainland makes it a target for pre-emptive strikes from Chinese forces.

The potential for a confrontation in the Spratlys remains considerable. US spy planes have defied China’s warnings to stay away. Chinese warplanes have threatened even commercial flights against making overflights. The Eagle and the Dragon have been playing footsy for the last decade, daring and defying each other, testing the waters, employing brinkmanship. One false move, one trigger-happy pilot could, in theory, trigger World War III in the blink of an eye. China knows its navy is vastly inferior to that of the US, but its arms programme has delivered key “asymmetric weapons” including high-tech, easy-to-build missiles that can take out carrier fleets – a slingshot against the Goliath, a critical equaliser against a superior foe.

The looming US-China confrontation in the Asia-Pacific is an energy war for China. But for America, it is an economic war, a struggle to maintain trading partners like South Korea, Japan, Vietnam and the Philippines. America wants a piece of the Asian-economy pie, which currently boasts the fastest growth rate in a world struggling with a Europe in decline. Thus, America’s grand plan is the Asia “pivot” – to shift 70 per cent of its naval forces to the Asia-Pacific and “encircle” and isolate its economic rival, China.

The answer to if and when a war will break out is governed by these considerations. Right now, the protagonists remain unwilling to rock the boat. The stakes are too high. But if the level of despair and desperation were to rise due to an energy crisis in China, or an American economic meltdown, war could easily follow.

Philippine President Benigno Aquino has been rattling his sabre, knowing the Americans are behind him. That may be a good or a bad geopolitical move. We may be putting ourselves in the crossfire of a deadly confrontation between giants, the outcome of which is unpredictable. Will the United States step in if China massacres Filipinos in the Spratlys? Not necessarily. The answer would depend on US interests, which are the real basis of Washington’s decisions. If China destroys the Seventh Fleet, would Subic and Clark bear the brunt of a retaliation? The United States has reportedly been using Clark Field lately in its surveillance of the Spratlys.

We are in the middle of it all. Now, how does that line in the cloak-and-dagger movies go? If you are caught, I will disavow any relationship with you.

See Confrontation looms as two fortresses rise in South China Sea
Why China is far from ready to meet the U.S. on a global battlefront
Growing Maritime Security Concerns in Southeast Asia: A Greater Need for Further Regional Cooperation


US Must Challenge China in South China Sea

Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter’s plea to China and the nations surrounding the South China Sea to end island base building will fall on deaf ears for two reasons. First, it is in their respective interests to create facts on the water to establish sovereignty claims and, second, because no one can stop them. The United States explicitly declares that it takes no position on these activities as they relate to sovereignty claims; Washington simply wants to be free to sail in international waters and fly in international air space.

Unfortunately for Washington and Beijing, these two courses – base-building and freedom of navigation are convergent. Sooner rather than later there will be confrontation. Incidents will follow and perhaps proliferate. The Beijing propaganda machine is already demanding that the United States retreat before its too late, that China is determined to establish a blue water presence in the Western Pacific, which it will inevitably dominate.

The U.S. should accept China’s challenge, the sooner the better. If China truly seeks to dominate the Western Pacific, then the United States should contest Beijing’s claims now while China is quite weak in terms of naval power and while the United States still has the relative advantage. The United States should employ a variant of the “Maritime Strategy” used against the Soviet Union in the eighties against China today. Then, the U.S. Navy sailed into so-called Soviet naval redoubts off Murmansk and the Sea of Okhotsk to deny the Soviet navy sanctuary in any conflict. That is what the U.S. Navy must do today against China. It must be made clear that China’s sea bases offer no advantage at all in time of conflict. Perhaps a gunnery demonstration against an uninhabited and unclaimed atoll would be useful. Perhaps a demonstration of the efficacy of fleet ABM capability should be mounted. The objective would be to make public the weaknesses China seeks to hide by its noisy propaganda.

China acts because the only power able to prevent such action, the United States, does nothing. Washington should contest China’s claims, both physically and historically. At the very least, Washington should challenge the historical basis for China’s myriad claims to demonstrate that, on the historical record, China is a paper tiger.

See US Must Challenge China in South China Sea
The scramble against China

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US affirms ‘ironclad’ promise to defend Phl

US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter told his Philippine counterpart on Wednesday that Washington’s pledge to defend the Pacific nation remains “ironclad” and called for an end to land reclamation in the South China Sea, officials said.

In talks in Hawaii with Voltaire Gazmin, Philippine secretary of national defense, the Pentagon chief “reaffirmed” the strong ties between the two countries and discussed territorial disputes in the contested waters of the South China Sea, where Beijing has been at loggerheads with the Philippines and other states in the region.

Citing Washington’s mutual defense treaty with Manila, Carter “stressed that the US commitment to defend the Philippines is ironclad,” the Pentagon said in a statement.

The meeting came as Carter embarks on a tour of Asia and amid rising tensions over Beijing’s massive effort to build artificial islands in the South China Sea.

Carter and Gazmin “agreed that all parties involved in the South China Sea should seek a peaceful resolution of disputes, immediately halt land reclamation, and stop further militarization of disputed features,” the statement said.

Manila has said it will keep flying over disputed areas in the South China Sea despite Beijing’s warnings. And this month, the Philippines took part in a groundbreaking naval exercise with Japan, in a move aimed at countering a rising China.

See US affirms ‘ironclad’ promise to defend Phl
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War is inevitable, China state media warns US on South China Sea tensions

“China is trying to close off the international waters of the South China Sea and seize the islands there, and we can’t allow that to stand because if we do, we send a signal to every other aggressor in the world, so we should think of the South China Sea really as Asia’s Crimea,” Chang says.

A few days later, a state run newspaper in China said that if the U.S. didn’t back down, the result would be war.

Despite the dangers, the U.S. now plans to send more ships and aircraft to the contested area. Chang says China’s actions and stance needs to be challenged.

“Right now, we have a dangerous dynamic; the Chinese don’t believe us. In the past, they would do something provocative, we would issue a warning and then we would do nothing… But right now, we have no choice but to defend our allies and our own interests in the region,” he says.

“Democracies always try to avoid conflict, and aggressors know that so they always push us,” Chang says.

“Sometimes they push us too far, and I think that what has happened right now is that China has pushed its neighbors and the United Sates too far.”

See How Do Beijing’s South China Sea Claims Threaten War?


War Clouds Over South China Sea As U.S. Declares Right To Waters And U.S. Warship Arrives At Subic

The drumbeat of war on distant horizons is reverberating through Southeast Asia with increasingly strong declarations of U.S. determination to stop the Chinese from expanding their writ over the South China Sea, notably islands claimed by the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia and Brunei.

While Defense Secretary Ashton Carter was in Singapore vowing that U.S. planes and ships would go wherever they wanted in international waters, the U.S. navy missile cruiser Shiloh was hoving into view at the historic Subic Bay port northwest of Manila.

Reports of Carter’s tough remarks at a gathering of defense ministers and the Shiloh’s visit to Subic Bay, the largest U.S. navy base before the Americans were forced to give it all up more than 20 years ago, were couched in euphemisms that scarcely masked the impression of spiraling tensions. “We want a peaceful resolution of all disputes,” Carter began. “A routine port call,” said a Philippine navy spokesman when asked what the Shiloh was doing at Subic Bay, in the once roaring American base town of Olongapo.

Oh sure. Those soothing assurances somehow only heightened the sense of an impending collision in the South China Sea around the Spratly Islands, where China has added about 2,000 acres to its holdings in the past year and a half by reclaiming land from the shallow waters. TV news programs in the Philippines and other countries repeatedly show what look like the makings of military bases, including air strips long enough for just about any plane, extending from shoals and atolls long since taken by China.

See War Clouds Over South China Sea As U.S. Declares Right To Waters And U.S. Warship Arrives At Subic
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When asked about what coordination the Philippines is having with its military ally, the United States, to deal with the West Philippine Sea problem, Aquino said the two countries were helping each other but that he could not disclose details.

“Even in basketball, you don’t reveal all your moves to the other coach,” President Aquino said.

The senior U.S. diplomat for the East Asia, Assistant Secretary of State Daniel Russel, told a media briefing in Washington the U.S. reconnaissance flight was “entirely appropriate” and that U.S. naval forces and military aircraft would “continue to fully exercise” the right to operate in international waters and airspace.

He said the United States would go further to preserve the ability of all countries to move in international waters and airspace.

“Nobody in their right mind is going to try to stop the U.S. Navy from operating – that would not be a good bet,” he said.

“But it’s not enough that a U.S. military plane can overfly international waters, even if there is challenge or hailing query … We believe that every country and all civilian actors should have unfettered access to international waters and international airspace.”

Military commanders from Japan, Australia, the Philippines and 20 other mostly Asia-Pacific nations huddled around a large tactical map, poring over satellite images in readiness for an amphibious raid on Hawaii’s most populous island Oahu. Although only a drill, it represented a glimpse of cooperation and integration among non-Chinese amphibious forces in Asia that the United States is belatedly encouraging. A senior U.S. official told Reuters the-first-of-its-kind gathering also signifies a nudge towards containing China, as Beijing grows increasingly assertive in pushing its territorial claims in the South China Sea.

But the situation would be very different in the event of a war. China’s reefs are tiny and few in number — and nowhere close to being self-sufficient. The other problem with islands and reefs is that they don’t move, and their locations are exceedingly obvious. Knowing an island’s coordinates means you know where to find it — and where to bomb — forever. This is particularly acute in the age of long-range precision-guided weapons…The bottom line is that these bases, as important as they may be, are just too vulnerable to attack. They will be disposable in wartime, with their lifespan measured in days, if not hours.

China’s reported confrontation with a US military plane in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea) indicated how it is willing to disregard international laws and freedom of flight and navigation, the Department of National Defense said on Thursday.

The Chinese navy issued warnings eight times as a U.S. surveillance plane on Wednesday swooped over islands that Beijing is using to extend its zone of influence. The series of man-made islands and the massive Chinese military build-up on them have alarmed the Pentagon, which is carrying out the surveillance flights in order to make clear the U.S. does not recognize China’s territorial claims. The militarized islands have also alarmed America’s regional allies.

“Ultimately no matter how much sand China piles on top of a submerged reef or shoal … it is not enhancing its territorial claim. You can’t build sovereignty,” US Secretary John Kerry said.

Beijing strongly condemned on Wednesday a proposed U.S. military plan to send aircraft and Navy ships near disputed South China Sea islands to contest Chinese territorial claims over the area.

An amendment to Republic Act 10349, the Revised Armed Forces of the Philippines Modernization Law of 2012, has been approved on third and final reading at the Senate. It seeks to ease the rules on the military’s acquisition of major equipment and weapons systems to facilitate the purchase of much needed equipment from foreign manufacturers.

The military’s top priority is to build a naval base on the country’s western coastline, opposite the disputed Spratly islands, although plans have been delayed by funding bottlenecks, Armed Forces chief Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang Jr. said yesterday. Catapang said US, Japanese and Vietnamese naval vessels would be allowed to make port calls once the facility in Oyster Bay in Palawan was finished.

The biggest joint Philippine-US military exercise in the last 15 years near disputed waters in the South China Sea ended last week in the wake of the revised rules for defence cooperation between the United States and Japan amid growing concerns in the Asia-Pacific over China’s massive land reclamation in the Spratlys, including parts claimed by the Philippines.

The international community should take strong, concrete action to stop China from building artificial islands and potential military bases in the West Philippine Sea, Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. said yesterday.

The Senate National Defense and Security Committee pushed for an accelerated Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) modernization program for the Philippines to be able to put up a credible defense posture against the military might of the People’s Republic of China.

“With threats from communist and Muslim rebels significantly reduced, preserving the country’s sovereignty over the West Philippine Sea is now the country’s biggest security concern,” the government’s top security adviser told a Senate panel.

At the very least, however, the United States will have to preemptively identify any ADIZ in the South China as a “redline.” – Richard Heydarian

“We have to show China that it doesn’t own the sea,” said the Japanese source.

“China could actively reduce tensions by taking concrete steps to halt land reclamation; clarify its nine-dash line claim in accordance with international law, as reflected in the Law of the Sea Convention; and conclude a code of conduct on the South China Sea with ASEAN,” Rathke said.


The South China Sea Crisis: What Should America Do about It?


Obama to China: Don’t elbow Philippines, Vietnam aside


US-Japan defense pact aims to check China


Sovereignty or Security?


Philippine Archipelagic Defense against China


Chinese Communists have no light in their soul

Commentaries and latest news updates to China’s West PH Sea Karmic Repercussions:

With US President Obama’s tough stand and vow of US presence amid China’s massive reef land reclamation in the Spratlys, there is a possibility that it is just a matter of time that a war might breakout between China and the US-Japan alliance – if big-time squatter China doesn’t stop its bullying and reef reclamation that is causing environmental irreversible damage – as shown by the latest news updates.

Obama to China: Don’t elbow Philippines, Vietnam aside

“We think this can be solved diplomatically, but just because the Philippines or Vietnam are not as large as China doesn’t mean that they can just be elbowed aside,” Obama said.

It was the strongest US reaction so far to China’s land reclamation following publication of pictures that, according to analysts, showed how Beijing was trying to create “facts in the water” to strengthen its territorial claims in the South China Sea.

China’s land reclamation in South China Sea waters within the exclusive economic zones of its smaller neighbors, including the Philippines and Vietnam, drew sharp criticism from Obama on Thursday.

In March, India assured the Philippines that it had its support in the promotion of a peaceful settlement of maritime disputes in the South China Sea.

Also in March, Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said Malaysia stood for the peaceful resolution of the maritime disputes and would promote peace and stability, maritime security, unimpeded trade and freedom of navigation and overflight in the South China Sea.

“These statements and those of other nations reflect growing international concern over these reclamations that are contrary to international law, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), and undermine our collective effort to build regional security and stability,” the DFA said in a statement.

China must adhere to international laws for the sake of regional peace and stability, Malacañang emphasized yesterday as it welcomed fresh assurances of support from United States President Barack Obama and other world leaders in seeking a diplomatic solution to the West Philippine Sea dispute.

“We note that in his most recent remarks in Jamaica, President Obama has reaffirmed the solidarity of the United States with the Philippines in upholding the principle that disputes on maritime entitlements in the South China Sea must be resolved diplomatically and in accordance with international law,” Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said.

Asked whether China was changing the game through massive reclamation activities in the Spratly islands group, Coloma stressed that as a member of the United Nations, China was expected to abide by the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) that delineates the maritime entitlements of countries.

See Obama to China: Don’t elbow Philippines, Vietnam aside

US-Japan defense pact

The US and Japan signed a new set of defence agreements on Monday that allow for greater co-operation between their militaries at a time of rising Chinese influence in Asia.

Part of a broader push by Japan to shed some of the restrictions of its postwar pacifism, the new guidelines would allow the US and Japanese militaries to work more closely together in the event of a conflict in the East China Sea or in North Korea.

For the Obama administration, the improved defence ties with Japan are an important part of its “pivot” to Asia which has also seen the US expand military co-operation with allies such as Australia and the Philippines and former enemies such as Vietnam.

While the administration insists that its approach to the region does not represent an effort to contain China, the thread that ties together all these different initiatives is the growing anxiety across Asia about how to deal with a more powerful China.

See US-Japan defence pact aims to check China
With new defense guidelines, U.S. and Japan look south
The New and Improved U.S.- Japan Alliance: A Good Deal for Washington?
Japan military to take more assertive role – officials
Obama hits China; Japan eyes joint US air patrols

Hard choice: Sovereignty or Securiy?

And this is where the Philippines has to make a hard choice: sovereignty or security? Since the country doesn’t have the means to defend her sovereignty and territorial integrity, she has to build her military assets from the ground up. But that takes a long time and it requires tens of billions of dollars, which the government doesn’t have.

The next best thing is to allow the U.S to bring her Seventh Fleet back to Subic Bay and to remilitarize Clark Air Base. “What! Allow the Americans to come back?” you’d hear the nationalists and their leftist allies shout. “No way are we going to give up our sovereignty to the Americans!” they’d say.

But has anybody ever, ever asked them the question: “How are you going to defend your territory from Chinese aggression?” Silence. Then, they say: “We’ll defend our country to the last drop of our blood!” Sure they’d do that. But would they succeed in expelling the invaders if each and every one of them bled to death?

And this is where security should be the number one priority of every country to protect her territory. Look at Singapore. Her land area is no bigger than Clark Base, but she has enough warplanes and warships to fill up Clark Base and Subic Base. Look at Bangladesh, a third or fourth world country, if there were such a thing. Recently, Bangladesh signed a contract with China to buy two corvettes and two submarines; and she only has 360 miles of coast line compared to the Philippines’ 22,548 miles! Isn’t there something wrong with the picture?

On April 28, 2014, the U.S. and the Philippines signed the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA). The purpose of EDCA is to strengthen the U.S.-Philippines security relationship by allowing the U.S. to station troops and operations on Philippine territory. But the agreement clearly states that the U.S. is not allowed to establish a permanent base and also stipulates that the U.S. is not allowed to store or position any nuclear weapons on Philippine territory. That’s like tying Uncle Sam’s hands behind his back and yet expect him to defend his little brown brothers who have no means of defending their beloved Motherland.

At the end of the day, something has to give. The Philippines has to choose between sovereignty and security. She cannot have it both ways.

See Sovereignty or Security?
US rebalance in Asia boosted by EDCA
Pushing Back Against a Chinese Lake in the South China Sea

Will China ever stop?

The aggressive behavior of China reflects the aspiration of Chinese President Xi Jinping to increase the giant country’s power and influence militarily, politically and economically to give it a dominant role in the Asia Pacific region. In the years following its stellar economic performance and its ability to sustain growth, China gained confidence and seized the opportunity to increase its global influence and shift the balance of power from the West to the East.

In 2013, China’s military spending reached $188 billion (or about two percent of its GDP), then lessened to $130 billion for 2014. Last month however, Beijing announced the increase of its military budget by 10 percent this year. While it points out that the amount is smaller than previous budgets, it is still undoubtedly significant – making other nations nervous that the balance of power might just tilt too much in China’s favor. PriceWaterhouseCoopers also projected that Chinese GDP will grow to almost 130 percent of US GDP by 2050 – pointing towards potential Chinese economic and military dominance by mid-century.

“Just because the Philippines or Vietnam are not as large as China doesn’t mean that they can just be elbowed aside,” Obama said following the release of satellite images by the CSIS showing the reclamation activities in Panganiban/Mischief Reef. Obama also took China to task for refusing to abide by international norms and rules as prescribed by the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.

Earlier on, Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario had the instinct and foresight about the Chinese never having the intention to talk to us in a “decent” manner about their claims. Albert immediately called the attention of the United States and other members of the international community on the potential threats posed by China’s massive reclamation in terms of freedom of navigation in the South China Sea where about $5 trillion of maritime trade passes through every year.

A major indicator regarding the gravity of the situation is Japan’s decision to issue a Cabinet resolution in July 2014 to reinterpret its Constitution and allow it to engage in self-defense activities to preserve its peace and security. The recent visit of US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter to Japan heralds a new era of bilateral defense cooperation with the Japanese government pushing for the relocation of the US Marine Corps’ Futenma Air Station to another location also in Okinawa.

Our friends in Washington agree that alliances at this point are crucial especially for smaller countries like the Philippines that do not have the wherewithal to defend their territory from big bullies like China.

Some nitwit who continues to say that the Philippines should not allow itself to get involved with a potential proxy war between China and the United States should have his head examined. And to those who continue to demonize the US and protest against the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement with the upcoming joint exercises should also do the same. The Visiting Forces Agreement first signed during the term of former president Joseph Estrada is now clearly the most important document in helping us with internal and external threats.

Although the Philippines has elevated its complaint before an international arbitration body, China has already stated its rejection regardless of the outcome. They have become even more brazen with their encroachment of our 200 nautical mile exclusive economic zone. The threat is now more serious and real — simply too close for comfort.

See Will China ever stop?

US Air, Naval support to the Philippines

Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario on Wednesday revealed that the United States is looking at sending advanced air and naval support to the Philippines amid the country’s simmering dispute with China over the West Philippine Sea.

Speaking to ANC, del Rosario quoted US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter as saying the US is looking at deploying to the Philippines various advanced air force, naval, and maritime domain equipment.

“These were outlined by Secretary Carter recently and we welcome these,” del Rosario said.

Del Rosario said the plan was revealed a few days ago and the Philippine government has yet to discuss the matter with the US government.

“We have not talked about to what extent this will happen. With that equipment, you can surmise there will be US presence,” he said.

“It’s the first time it was announced a few days ago. It’s the first time we’re hearing about it. We have not engaged in any discussion. We will find out more about what these plans involved.”

Del Rosario said he is set to fly to the US in two weeks to meet with members of the US Congress and possibly, Carter and US Secretary of State John Kerry.

The Philippines has been protesting China’s reclamation activities in several features in the South China Sea.

Latest satellite images showed that China has made some progress with its reclamation works in Mischief Reef (Panganiban Reef) which is located off Palawan and is considered by the Philippines to be within its exclusive economic zone.

Del Rosario said the Chinese reclamation activities must stop as these are threats to other coastal claimants in the disputed waters.

“They are out to control the South China Sea and that’s obvious for various reasons. They need to feed their people from the resources. There are hydrocarbon resources there. They need to fuel their economy and also it is strategic militarily to able to control the South China Sea,” he said.

See Maritime monitoring seen to improve with coast watch center
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G7 Foreign Ministers hit China reclamation

In a statement hailed by the Philippines, foreign ministers from the world’s 7 most industrialized countries slammed China’s artificial islands in the disputed South China Sea.

Foreign ministers from the Group of Seven, or G7, also called for a binding Code of Conduct in the South China Sea.

At the same time, they backed the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea, a non-binding document signed in 2002 to counter provocative actions in the disputed waters.

“We continue to observe the situation in the East and South China Seas and are concerned by any unilateral actions, such as large-scale land reclamation, which change the status quo and increase tensions,” the G7 foreign ministers said in a statement Wednesday, April 15.

They said: “We strongly oppose any attempt to assert territorial or maritime claims through the use of intimidation, coercion, or force. We call on all states to pursue the peaceful management or settlement of maritime disputes in accordance with international law, including through internationally recognized legal dispute settlement mechanisms, and to fully implement any decisions rendered by the relevant courts and tribunals which are binding on them.”

“We underline the importance of coastal states refraining from unilateral actions that cause permanent physical change to the marine environment in areas pending final delimitation,” the foreign ministers added.

The declaration was signed by foreign ministers from Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States, as well as the High Representative of the European Union.

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Are Asia’s nations losing their fear of China?
New law to allow Japan to supply US military in South China Sea, say officials
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Japan looks to patrol S. China Sea as US-Philippine drills commence
China opposes PH seeking ASEAN unity vs reclamation
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China activities threatening Philippine defense – AFP chief
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Coast guard eyed to escort Filipino fishermen in South China Sea
Gov’t confirms Chinese vessel drove away PH fishermen from Panatag Shoal
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China’s reclamation to have repercussions – AFP
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In Photos: China’s reclamation in West Philippine Sea

Why good ole Mother Earth might be the key to halting Beijing’s island reclamation moves.

Although the tribunal has yet to decide whether it has jurisdiction to hear the case, the Philippines’ strategy of using international law to press its arguments — rather than through negotiations with China — may offer a blueprint for pushing back against China’s recent land reclamation activities. Here is where the environmental consequences of China’s island buildup are poised to play a central role.

Like all countries that have ratified UNCLOS, China has general legal obligations to protect and preserve the marine environment. UNCLOS specifically requires signatory nations to refrain from causing transboundary environmental harms and to take measures “necessary to protect and preserve rare or fragile ecosystems as well as the habitat of depleted, threatened or endangered species and other forms of marine life.”

The treaty also calls upon states to conduct and communicate the results of environmental impact assessments. Importantly, these obligations are largely independent of questions about sovereignty and jurisdiction. And an independent tribunal can be convened under compulsory jurisdiction to interpret and apply them.

If the Philippines or another littoral state brought a claim against China for violation of UNCLOS’s environmental protection provisions, the claimant state could rest its case on the damage being caused by land reclamation in a region that hosts the world’s greatest marine biodiversity — where fish supply around 22 percent of the average person’s diet yet 40 percent of fish stocks are already depleted; where 70 percent of the coral reefs are judged to be in fair or poor condition; and where the list of endangered species is rising steadily alongside increasing ocean acidification. With this context to support it, the litigant stat’’s ultimate goal would be a judgment from the tribunal ordering China to change its behavior in the name of environmental sustainability.

Under UNCLOS, even before an arbitral tribunal is convened to address the merits of the dispute, the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) can issue “provisional measures” requiring that states take certain actions to preserve the parties’ rights or prevent harm to the marine environment. Thus, it is conceivable that ITLOS or an arbitral tribunal could require China to halt or modify its land reclamation work if it found that these activities pose an urgent environmental threat.

There is precedent for a request under UNCLOS for provisional measures to address environmental harms caused by land reclamation. In 2003, Malaysia brought a case against Singapore challenging its land reclamation activities in and around disputed waters in the Straits of Johor. Malaysia requested provisional measures including a suspension of all reclamation until the arbitral tribunal reached a judgment.

Although ITLOS declined to support Malaysia’s request for a suspension of Singapore’s activities, it ordered the countries to establish a joint group of independent experts to study the environmental effects of Singapore’s land reclamation and propose appropriate mitigating measures. In addition, pending a final decision in the arbitration, ITLOS required Singapore and Malaysia to share information and engage in risk assessments, and ordered Singapore to refrain from any land reclamation that would cause irreparable prejudice to Malaysia’s rights. After one year, the joint expert working group proposed a number of mitigating measures that served as the basis for an eventual settlement between the parties.

China denies that its land reclamation is damaging marine ecosystems, and even contends it is providing neighboring nations in the South China Sea with public goods such as weather monitoring and search and rescue facilities. Experts and officials from other countries offer a starkly different assessment. According to the Philippines’ deputy representative to the United Nations, land reclamation “is causing widespread destruction of the region’s biodiversity” and will “irreparably damage the entire ecological balance” in the region’s waters. On April 13, the Philippines’ foreign ministry spokesperson alleged that Chinese construction has destroyed more than 300 acres of coral reefs and is causing $100 million in annual economic losses to states in the vicinity.

The Chinese government insists it has carried out environmental impact assessments that support its island buildups, but its decision not to release these assessments raises further questions about its compliance with UNCLOS obligations of disclosure and cooperation. An UNCLOS tribunal could demand, at a minimum, that China provide more transparency into its actions and perform environmental assessments.

One question that an arbitration/litigation strategy would inevitably raise is whether an international tribunal has jurisdiction to hear the dispute. This is a key issue in the ongoing Philippines arbitration, where China has refused to participate in the proceedings.

Although China ratified UNCLOS, it issued a declaration refusing to subject itself to the compulsory dispute settlement process for maritime delimitation disputes. This opt-out does not apply, however, to disputes over marine environmental protection.

Furthermore, in the Malaysia v. Singapore case, the existence of conflicting maritime boundary claims did not preclude the exercise of jurisdiction to consider the adverse effects of land reclamation. As such, if China chose to contest the tribunal’s jurisdiction, this time it would find itself on shakier ground.

Even so, the legal process could take years to play out, during which time China might continue to advance its island construction projects. But if the tribunal judged the environmental harms caused by land reclamation to be sufficiently urgent, it could issue provisional measures early in the case requiring prompt cessation or modification of any party’s dredging and island expansion. Or, as in the Malaysia v. Singapore case, it could order some form of independent expert assessment of the damage and the measures needed to address it. In the meantime, the risk that the tribunal would rule against it might cause China to recalibrate the political costs of its actions. This might also catalyze momentum for ASEAN negotiations on a binding Code of Conduct or bolster support for a moratorium on destabilizing actions in the region.

Assuming it got that far, there is no guarantee that China or any other state would agree to abide by an adverse judgment. The adjudicative power of UNCLOS dispute settlement bodies is not backed by force or coercion. Nonetheless, the reputational costs of an unfavorable ruling would be compounded by a failure to comply, potentially isolating China in the court of public opinion and pushing rival claimant countries closer to the United States.

A further obstacle to the arbitration/litigation approach is that China could cry foul on other regional players that have engaged in similarly destructive land reclamation. Virtually all parties to the 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea have violated their agreements, including in some cases through island construction not entirely unlike what China is engaged in now. The Philippines, Vietnam and other states might worry about being compelled to take their own remedial actions. But as they look at the scale and speed of China’s construction, they may conclude that the prospect of liability is outweighed by their concerns about unchecked Chinese maritime expansion.

Even so, the legal process could take years to play out, during which time China might continue to advance its island construction projects. But if the tribunal judged the environmental harms caused by land reclamation to be sufficiently urgent, it could issue provisional measures early in the case requiring prompt cessation or modification of any party’s dredging and island expansion. Or, as in the Malaysia v. Singapore case, it could order some form of independent expert assessment of the damage and the measures needed to address it. In the meantime, the risk that the tribunal would rule against it might cause China to recalibrate the political costs of its actions. This might also catalyze momentum for ASEAN negotiations on a binding Code of Conduct or bolster support for a moratorium on destabilizing actions in the region.

Assuming it got that far, there is no guarantee that China or any other state would agree to abide by an adverse judgment. The adjudicative power of UNCLOS dispute settlement bodies is not backed by force or coercion. Nonetheless, the reputational costs of an unfavorable ruling would be compounded by a failure to comply, potentially isolating China in the court of public opinion and pushing rival claimant countries closer to the United States.

Moreover, littoral states increasingly recognize that the South China Sea is suffering an environmental crisis with real economic consequences. Marine biologists estimate, for example, that fishing will need to be reduced 50 percent to sustain key species, indicating this is an issue no state can handle on its own. Ironically, a mutually adverse judgment of an independent tribunal (or a settlement agreed to in the shadow of legal proceedings) might actually encourage states to cooperate on environmental protection, which itself could set the stage for further confidence-building measures such as cooperation on joint development of resources, disaster response, piracy or other maritime challenges.

A further obstacle to the arbitration/litigation approach is that China could cry foul on other regional players that have engaged in similarly destructive land reclamation. Virtually all parties to the 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea have violated their agreements, including in some cases through island construction not entirely unlike what China is engaged in now. The Philippines, Vietnam and other states might worry about being compelled to take their own remedial actions. But as they look at the scale and speed of China’s construction, they may conclude that the prospect of liability is outweighed by their concerns about unchecked Chinese maritime expansion.

None of this is to suggest that litigating states would abandon parallel strategies and hard-power alternatives the moment a claim is filed. International law is not a cure-all for power politics, and the outcome of any legal proceeding would not be preordained. But with the geopolitical stakes increasing by the day as satellites reveal previously uninhabitable rocks growing into full-fledged military outposts, don’t be surprised if the next phase of “lawfare” in the South China Sea plays out in the tactical arena of environmental protection.

See A secret weapon to stop China’s island building: The Environment?
Why China’s fake islands violate international law
Chinese reclamation damage to Philippine coral reefs 600X larger than Tubbataha’s – BFAR
The other crisis in the South China Sea
AFP: Damage from China’s reclamation in West PH sea irreversible, widespread

Big-time Squatter China

The “big-time squatter” in the West Philippine Sea (WPS) is guilty of three things, Manila’s military spokesman said Tuesday: causing regional instability, robbing thousands of their livelihood, and depriving future generations of biodiversity.

Besides the dangerous prospects of China’s using its facilities for military projection in the South China Sea, Beijing’s reclamation frenzy on Philippine maritime territory is depriving thousands of fishermen of their livelihood, as Chinese patrol boats routinely drive away Filipinos who have fished in those waters for a long time; and destroying biodiversity so crucial to the lives of future generations, especially coral reefs that are the first casualty of the reclamation frenzy. China is not only stealing but also irreparably damaging the maritime food chain systems of the present and next generations of Filipinos, asserted Armed Forces of the Philippines spokesman Brigadier General Joselito Kakilala.

“These artificial ‘walls of sand’ that China are building eliminates centuries-old pristine coral reefs in our exclusive economic zone (EEZ) spells not only environmental disaster in relation to climate change but also denying the livelihood of the next generation of Filipinos,” Kakilala said.

Coral reefs also provide a natural defense from natural calamities like tsunamis, he noted.

“Our fishing industry will be adversely affected because we’ve no more coral reefs and fishing grounds to depend on,” Kakilala said.

AFP chief of staff Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang Jr. on Monday had urged China to stop its reclamation spree in the Spratlys, which he said violated the Declaration of Conduct that Manila and Beijing including Taiwan, Vietnam, Brunei, and Malaysia signed.

President Benigno Aquino III said earlier he will push for a Code of Conduct when he attends the ASEAN meeting in Kuala Lumpur on April 26-27, as the DOC is being routinely ignored by Beijing.

“China’s massive reclamation activities are causing irreversible and widespread damage to the biodiversity and ecological balance of the West Philippine Sea. China’s claim that its activities have not caused damage to the ecological environment in this area is not acceptable,” Catapang said.

Catapang presented to the media on Monday satellite images showing the magnitude of construction works by China in the WPS.

“For example, the destruction of 300 acres of coral reef systems resulting from the reclamations is estimated to lead to economic losses to coastal states valued at $100 million annually,” he added.

Worse, Catapang said, Chinese naval and maritime vessels continue to drive away Filipino fishermen near these reclamation sites and also in Bajo de Masinloc, “denying our people of their own fishing areas which are the sources of their livelihood.”

“It is worth remembering that China has tolerated environmentally harmful fishing practices by its fishermen who are now occupying Bajo De Masinloc, a Philippine territory that was grabbed and now being dominated. These bad fishing practices are violations under the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), the Convention on Biological Diversity, and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES),” he lamented.

Since China and the Philippines had a standoff in 2012 in Panatag (Scarbourough) Shoal, the Chinese Navy has been spotted occasionally escorting flotillas of fishermen to scour the reefs for giant clams and corals, in waters in the Kalayaan Island Group (KIG), a municipality in Palawan province.

Besides the irreparable environmental and food chain destruction, China’s expansionist agenda is causing tension among claimant countries, because it could restrict freedom of navigation and spark countermoves to its possible military purposes.

China has been building airfields in Subi and Mischief reefs, threatening the security and safety of troops in Ayungin Shoal and civilians in Barangay Pagasa Island.

Last week, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin described China’s action as a threat to the Philippines’ air and maritime domains.

According to Kakilala, the latest developments make it imperative for the government to fast-track the Modernization Program of the AFP to build a “minimum credible defense”.

The Philippines nees to “have the capability to effectively patrol and protect our territorial domains and sovereignty,” he said.

President Benigno Aquino III approved a total budget of P75 billion to buy naval vessels and air assets.

However, the Bids and Awards Committee (BAC) of the Department of National Defense is being slowed down by alleged corruption issues in some projects, and has yet to bid out or complete the bidding of other big-ticket items especially modern naval warships the government wants to procure.

The Philippine Air Force expects a pair of lead-in jet fighters delivered in the last quarter of 2015 by the Korean Aerospace Inc. (KAI) of South Korea. The government has ordered at least 12 units of the jets at the cost of P18.9 billion. The 10 remaining jets will be delivered by batches until 2017, Lieutenant General Jeffrey Delgado, the Air Force chief, said.

See Big-time squatter China destroying food chain of next generations of Filipinos – AFP
Chinese Coast Guard water cannons Filipino fishing boat, points gun at skipper in Panatag Shoal
Resupply for Ayungin troops, safety of Pagasa island in danger over China’s reclamations
Via Guns and water cannons | Pinoy fishermen tell how China guards drove them away from Scarborough
US: China water cannons provocative
How China occupied Kagitingan Reef

REPLAY: AFP presscon on China reclamation in West PHL Sea

Latest news updates on the South China Sea dispute between China, Philippines, and US-Japan alliance:

US affirms ‘ironclad’ promise to defend Phl
ITAGA SA BATO | US affirms ‘ironclad’ promise to defend Philippines
Carter: China Isolating Itself in Pacific
BEYOND DIPLOMATIC PROTESTS | A proposed approach on territorial dispute with China, Part 3 of 3
US rejects China’s offer to use South China Sea facilities
US Rejects China’s Offer Over Disputed Islands
Maritime monitoring seen to improve with coast watch center
‘China fabricating stories to cover up marine destruction in Spratlys’
China Decries New US-Japan Defense Guidelines
US says China’s activity in South China Sea won’t help peace
With new defense guidelines, U.S. and Japan look south
The New and Improved U.S.- Japan Alliance: A Good Deal for Washington?
US pours $20M into PH coast watch center
The South China Sea Crisis: What Should America Do about It?
AFP chief calls US PH’s big brother, friend and ally
Why China’s fake islands violate international law
DFA: China’s accusations hard to believe
AFP to China: Show proof of Philippines’ reclamation
AFP dares China to prove PH reclamation activities in disputed waters
AFP: China’s concern over ASEAN statement on disputed sea ‘a good sign’
In Washington, a Strategic Shift on China—Toward Containment
Experts Fear a Defensive Zone Over China’s Homemade Islands
Beyond the US Rebalance to Asia: A Regional Perspective
China’s South China Sea Strategy Is Asia’s Worst Nightmare
Global Strike Command is USAF’s new weapon against China
Obama hits China; Japan eyes joint US air patrols
China fires back at PH, claimants with reclamation accusations
Obama: China flexing muscle in disputes with neighbors
Japan to seek access to PH military bases?
US to Deploy Troops Near Contested Spratly Islands
Pushing Back Against a Chinese Lake in the South China Sea
Faeldon to push through with ‘patriotic voyage’ vs China
Report: US, Philippines agree on rotations to bases along South China Sea
US-Japan defence pact aims to check China
McCain urges Obama to boost Asian allies’ navies
Asean concerned but won’t confront China
Newest US maritime patrol, strike aircraft in aircraft exhibit of Balikatan 2015
US, Japan to unveil new defense guidelines amid China’s rise
Malaysia: ASEAN to avoid confronting China in S. China Sea
China reclamation a threat to region’s security: PNoy
Aquino, Vietnam PM push for code of conduct amid China’s reclamation
Philippine military exercise Balikatan reaffirms US-Philippines ties
Chinese actions ‘may undermine peace’ in South China Sea – ASEAN
PH appeals for ASEAN unity vs China control
Southeast Asia Divided on Response to Chinese Reclamation in South China Sea
Philippines: ASEAN credibility at stake in China issue
Beijing moves toward ‘de facto control of South China Sea’ – Philippines
US wants access to 8 Philippine bases as part of Asia pivot
US rebalance in Asia boosted by EDCA
Japan should be worried: Here’s what China may be up to in the South China Sea
China Swallowing Up Territory, Neighbors in Fear
PNoy to meet Japan PM amid China aggression
Carpio: China’s reclamation poses national crisis for PH
AFP chief: We’re on our own against China
DFA: China resorting to name-calling as it cannot defend its illegal sea claims
New security law may drag SDF into conflicts in South China Sea
Chinese ship fires flares at PAF plane over Kalayaan
No firing occurred but Chinese ship did shoo Navy planes off Kagitingan Reef
Guess | How much is China’s territorial incursion costing Philippine economy?
China reclamation in West PH Sea to be finished this year
PH case vs China up next level in July
PHL gov’t urged to launch propaganda blitz vs China
PNoy needs to convene NSC for holistic approach on China – Trillanes, Magdalo reps
US condemns China’s use of water cannons
Resupply for Ayungin troops, safety of Pagasa island in danger over China’s reclamations
Via Guns and water cannons | Pinoy fishermen tell how China guards drove them away from Scarborough
Gov’t rules out backchanneling talks in sea dispute with China
Aquino orders DFA, DND to respond to Panatag incident
New law to allow Japan to supply US military in South China Sea, say officials
Big-time squatter’ China destroying food chain of net generation of Filipinos
Indonesia in a bind over Beijing’s assertiveness in South China Sea
No need to convene NSC over sea tension
US rebalance to Asia begins with major military drill in the Philippines
China opposes PH seeking ASEAN unity vs reclamation
P-Noy seeking ASEAN stand on China Beijing: It’s not an ASEAN issue
What’s going on in the Spratlys? General Catapang shows pics of massive Chinese reclamation efforts
Coast guard eyed to escort Filipino fishermen in South China Sea
Chinese driving out fishers in Panatag blocking supplies to Ayungin
China reclamation may cut PH access to West PH Sea
Expanded Philippines-US war games start today
AFP has more proof of aggressive China reclamation
DND hopes China will wake up to the truth
Stronger global action sought on China moves
Chinese shoo away Filipino fishermen’s boats
China’s reclamation to have repercussions – AFP
Balikatan exercises about more than just West PH Sea tension – Palace
Balakitan 2015 not deliberately targeting China says palace
Japan and US enclose Chinese coast within sensor net
China may gain control of South China Sea, says US: Fast tracked airstrip on Fiery Cross reef confirms Chinese plans
China ignores global outcry vs reclamation
Advance US Air and Navy weaponry for Philippines defense on its way
China: Artificial islands reasonable, legal
US to China: Clarify your boundary
US-Philippines wargames to start under China’s shadow
China building runway in disputed South China Sea – source
Palace welcomes G7 concern over sea reclamation
Aquino: South China Sea dispute a global problem
PH ready for substantive US support in sea row
Gov’t supports declaration on maritime security
Allies concerned at China’s maritime moves
China building airstrip on Kagitingan reef
Revelations on China’s Maritime Modernization
US General: New Chinese weapons threaten every satellite in orbit
Vietnamese boycott Chinese products
US: Growing China, Russia military activity in Asia-Pacific
G7 Foreign Ministers’ Declaration on Maritime Security in Lübeck, 15 April 2015
China’s dredging in contested waters worries US
Palace shrugs off China’s dismissal of Noy’s remark
Palace: Talks on Code of Conduct in S. China Sea high on ASEAN summit agenda
China’s reclamation in disputed waters kills coral reefs, marine life – biodiversity specialist
US Admiral: China’s islands can host ADIZ, missiles
China reef work in Spratlys could lead to new air exclusion zone: US Commander
DFA chief: US sending military equipment to help PH monitor territory
US eyes top equipment for PH amid China row
Philippines eyed for advanced US air, navy weaponry
PH seeks more substantive US support in S. China Sea dispute
DFA chief: US vows presence in disputed waters amid China reclamation
DFA chief: 50 meetings with China reached dead end
Military gears up for Balikatan 2015
China reclamation meant to define 9-dash line – PH
China’s building on the Spratlys needs a united response
Fiscal and regional challenges threaten US strategy in Pacific
Why Beijing’s island-building in South China Sea is a concern
South China Sea Standoff
Here’s China’s strategy for establishing naval superiority in Asia
Palace OKs more ships, planes for Coast Guard
Trillanes seeks probe on China reclamation in disputed waters
China dismisses Aquino’s call to fear Beijing over reclamation frenzy
Aquino: Fear China’s actions in S. China Sea
South China Sea: China is building on the Paracels as well
China’s Great Wall of Sand
US unwise to escalate South China Sea tensions over Chinese activities
DND: Philippines can’t act on China’s wrongdoing by wrongdoing
Destructive China reclamation hit
Chinese claim of South China Sea reclamation not causing damage unacceptable – DFA
$100M in economic losses incurred yearly due to China’s reclamation
Indonesia eyes regular navy exercises with US in South China Sea
PH sea, air domain at risk from Beijing’s rush to build facilities on reclaimed land
Philippines: China’s expansion destroys coral reefs, livelihood
DFA: China militarizing disputed waters
PH slams China for destroying marine life with reclamation works
China’s reclamation in Spratlys destroying environment, people’s livelihood
China media hits Washington for reneging on neutrality pledge
PH cites growing international concern over China reclamation
Philippines gains international support
China must adhere to international laws Palace welcomes Obama support
China hits back US over bullying tag
Philippines has broad international support in sea dispute
Obama scores China bullying in South China Sea
Revealed: China’s reasons for island-building in the South China Sea
Great Wall of Sand: China builds islands in contested waters
Obama says concerned China bullying others in South China Sea
Obama to China: Don’t elbow Philippines, Vietnam aside
China’s Mischief reef land reclamation will ultimately choke PH access to Ayungin, Recto Bank
Fiery Cross reef will be China’s main base in the Spratlys
ONI reveals massive Chinese naval buildup
Beijing, with an eye on the South China Sea, adds patrol ships
China defends land reclamation on disputed South China Sea islands
Pentagon chief vows to deploy best US weaponry to Asia
China-US: Avoiding the improbable war
New images show China’s reclamation on Mischief Reef in South China Sea
US, Japan renew vow to stand with Philippines
Malacanang welcomes US Navy execs readiness to respond to China threats in West Ph Sea
US defense chief warns against militarization of territorial rows in Asia
Philippines, US exercises near disputed sea not show of force
The Other Problem in the South China Sea

For news updates, please click Like at Facebook Page


Our Geography, Our Destiny – Facebook

Conclusion: If diplomacy turns into war between China and the US Alliance over the sea dispute in the West PH Sea, come what may, we have to look positively on the inevitably of war if necessary because sovereignty rights, freedom of navigation, democracy and peace are at stake here which can only be achieved not by military force but by following the international rule of law of the seas, and that is worth fighting for.

As a member of the United Nation, China is expected to abide by the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) that delineates the maritime entitlements of countries, and not by land grabbing, use of military force and irreversible damage to the environment by its land reclamation in the West PH Sea.


Chinese Communists have no light in their soul

What can Filipinos do so we don’t feel hopeless?

Firstly, most Filipinos don’t have control to what is happening. What you can do is boycott (not buy) China made products.

Secondly, similar to what I am doing, you can voice your opinion against China via facebook or blogs in the internet to vent your anger and frustration toward the Chinese big-time squatters, the armed forces of the Philippines without the ships and jet-fighters to the fight the land grabbing Chinese coast guard ships, and the cowardice of self-serving politicians for doing nothing but complain diplomatically. Isn’t it better to do and act on something about the problem, than do nothing and be sorry later?

Thirdly, let go and let God. Let Karma do its course, for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Don’t take it personally and don’t make assumptions. Who knows? The US-Japan alliance might be the solution to the dilemma the Philippines is facing now. Despite what General Catapang says that we’re on our own against China, there is a talk between Japan and US to joint patrols and surveillance in South China Sea since there is a new law to allow Japan to supply US military in South China Sea, say officials with the US-Japan defence pact aims to check China. We just have to wait and see, hope and pray!

Lastly, I believe that the archipelagic defense strategy is a game changer for the US Alliance – Philippines, Vietnam, Japan and US against China.

Think positively, aren’t we Filipinos lucky that we live in a democractic country where we enjoy freedom and rights, and that we are not governed by greedy Chinese communists who don’t respect mother nature, international law of the sea and the sovereign rights of other Asian neighbors.

You might ask, “Why are Communist China’s leaders doing this?”

They have no light in their soul.


Atma (Soul) Yoga of Immortality

America’s Existence Threatens the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)

Americans need to understand that the CCP is quietly waging war on the United States through spying, so-called soft power, and hacking. The CCP is preparing to have the world’s most dominant military apparatus by 2020 in order to wage loud war, if necessary.

The CCP feels threatened by what America represents. America, with all its faults, shows the world that freedom and democracy can exist in a vibrant, powerful nation. Our values in the West support human dignity, individual rights and freedoms.

This scares the CCP because it knows that its own people will want those freedoms, if they can see that freedom works. In this sense, America represents a primal threat to the survival of the CCP. The CCP cannot afford for Chinese people to see what may be the scenario when the CCP’s heavy hand is no longer pressing down.

The CCP destroys some of its own people as a matter of strategy, and it pollutes the air, water, and soil. There are hundreds of cancer villages in China, where large percentages of the people get cancer. The soil has become toxic in many places in China from heavy metal contamination and other pollution. The water in many places in China is undrinkable.

Look at a satellite photo of the earth and one sees a dark cloud of air pollution spreading out from China. That dark cloud could be a metaphor for the CCP itself. In order to survive, it needs to spread out. It can’t allow our Western democratic system to remain. And with the dark cloud of the CCP comes decay of morality, a pollution in the spiritual realm that matches the extraordinary dirtying of the physical realm.

See Nine Commentaries shows the path to China’s future

Archipelagic Defense against China

In my opinion: I believe that this archipelagic defense strategy is a game changer for Philippines vs China.

While China’s territorial claims pose a threat to most countries in the region, the most immediate threat is to the countries along what is known as the “first island chain” encompassing Japan, Taiwan, and the Philippines. It is here that Andrew Krepinevich of the Center for Strategic Studies, proposes what he calls an “Archipelagic Defense.” This can be achieved by establishing a series of linked defense along the first island chain and make them the front line in denying Beijing’s ability to achieve its “revisionist aims” of territorial expansion through aggression or coercion.

The first goal is for the United States to deny China the ability to control the air and sea around the “first island chain.” There are three examples cited in the article.

The first is that the United States and its allies could base ground forces along the “first island chain” armed with mobile launchers and anti-ship cruise missiles. Japan and Vietnam have already fielded similar systems. The Philippines, with American assistance could do the same.

The second proposal is naval mine warfare. Naval ships could lay and clear mines to restrict or allow transit through narrow seas and straits. In this way, large stretches of the West Philippine Sea could become off limits to the Chinese navy. This could also complicate a Chinese naval offensive and hamper China’s ability to harass Philippine and allied naval forces.

Third, by placing low-frequency and acoustic sensors in the water around the “first island chain,” the United States and its allies could augment their ability to detect the presence of Chinese submarines. Coastal artillery units could then use rocket-launched torpedoes to induce oncoming submarines to abandon their missions and retreat.

Japan and Vietnam have already said they are serious about fielding the kind of defense required for the “Archipelagic Defense.” The Philippines, considering China’s overt aggressiveness, may have no choice but to also join.

The main goal of the Archipelagic Defense is to restore a balance of power in the West Philippine Sea that will, hopefully, serve as a deterrent to China’s continuous maritime and military bullying of its neighbors.

See Defending against China
Japan and US enclose Chinese coast within sensor net

DETERRENCE THROUGH DENIAL

If Washington wants to change Beijing’s calculus, it must deny China the ability to control the air and the sea around the first island chain, since the PLA would have to dominate both arenas to isolate the archipelago. The United States must also integrate allied battle networks and strengthen allied capabilities – both of which will help offset the PLA’s efforts to destabilize the region’s military balance. By and large, those goals can be achieved with ground forces, which would not replace existing air and naval forces but complement them.


When it comes to air defenses, states along the first island chain could buttress their ability to deny China access to airspace by employing army units equipped with highly mobile and relatively simple short-range interceptor missiles (such as the Evolved Sea Sparrow, supported by GIRAFFE radar systems to detect targets). The U.S. Army, meanwhile, along with such allies as Japan, could operate more sophisticated, longer-range systems capable of intercepting Chinese cruise missiles and destroying advanced Chinese aircraft. Although not part of the first island chain, Vietnam is already enhancing its air-denial capabilities and could contribute to a larger defense effort.


Then there is the task of denying the PLA the sea control it would need to mount offensive operations against the islands. Senior members of Congress have encouraged the U.S. Army to consider resurrecting an artillery force for coastal defense, a mission it abandoned after World War II.The idea is simple and compelling. Rather than risk sending warships within range of PLA defenses or diverting submarines from higher-priority missions, the United States and its allies could rely on ground forces, based along the first island chain and armed with mobile launchers and antiship cruise missiles, to perform the same operations. Japan’s military has done exactly that, placing shore-based antiship cruise missile units on some of the Ryukyu Islands during military exercises. Vietnam has fielded similar systems. And other frontline states could follow suit, either independently or with U.S. funding, training, and technical assistance.


See How to Deter China: The Case for Archipelagic Defense
How to Deter China: Enter Archipelagic Defense


US rebalance in Asia boosted by EDCA


Carpio: China’s reclamation poses national crisis for PH


A Secret weapon to stop China’s island building: the environment?


Advance US Air and Navy weaponry for Philippines defense on its way


Palace welcomes G7 concern over sea reclamation

Asian Alliance vs China


China reclamation meant to define 9-dash line – PH


Lawyer Anne Marie Coromina’s old maps help PH case vs China


Philippines: China’s expansion destroys coral reefs, livelihood


Is Binay the Manchurian candidate?

See my commentaries, news and updates at:

China’s West PH Sea Karmic Repercussions
Blockades by China to follow in West PH Sea
United, we will win vs China
China’s ADIZ in West PH Sea
SC: EDCA is constitutional
VFA/EDCA needed to defend West PH Sea
China vs Philippines Ayungin Standoff
CCP, an outlaw vs US Alliance
US-Asia Pacific Alliance vs China
US, Philippines and Japan vs China
Our Geography is our Destiny

My predictions twelve months ago:
I personally believe that the Supreme Court will rule on the constitutionality of EDCA to support President Aquino’s primary constitutional duty to serve and protect the people, promote national security, upgrade the AFP’s military facilities and preposition defense assets, and improve the military’s capabilities for humanitarian assistance and disaster response (HADR).

By next year or so, I believe that China will establish an Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) in the West Philippine Sea where they are building a naval base with airstrip now at Kagitingan Reef in the Spratly islands, and where the war will be between China and the US Alliance (Vietnam, Australia, US, Japan and other claimants).

I believe that regardless of a favorable outcome of the Philippine’s memorial submission to ITLOS, China will still use threats of force, intimidation, coercion and gunboat diplomacy because China will disregard the arbitration outcome and a tribunal can’t stop China from bullying its neighbors posing a complicated challenge to the region’s peace and security unless a necessary boost in military hardware upgrade capability in the Philippines is attained together with a US asia-pacific alliance, sanctions and a strong international support to militarily confront or deter China’s armed invasion collectively thereby upholding the rule of international law, unimpeded trade and freedom of navigation. What other viable peaceful options do we have to resolve China’s fanatical expansion agenda with invasive armed aggression?

With China’s disregard to UN arbitration and international law’s UNCLOS by its illegal declaration of sovereignty to all of South China Sea with its unilateral attempts to assert its bogus 9-dash line claims through its show of intimidation or force in the Philippines and Vietnam, will the group of G-7 still remain silent to China’s military intentions or act on its mandate to oppose China’s actions now?

Since the problem is a state of unpreparedness – the lack of military capability of the AFP now, I believe that a viable alternative or contingency measure to the current sea dispute situation between China and the Philippines would be for the G-7 allies to provide the AFP with the necessary training and credible number of military hardware such as warships, missiles, fighter planes, and drones, on loans, to counter Chinese invasion of Philippine reefs and shoals.

Well trained and credible armed Filipino soldiers have done their own fighting before against internal terrorists, in the Korean war and in WW2 and as first defenders before other nations will intervene, AFP will fight these Chinese invaders and outlaws again with a credible military hardware upgrade to protect its sovereignty and prevent further loss of more rich natural resource Philippine territories to China.”

China keeps on saying that ASEAN claimants must adhere to the Code of Conduct (COC) but at the same time China simply violates that rule and says that it has the right to do whatever it wants in the Spratley’s.

China keeps on building structures and even doing reclamation works despite repeatedly stressing that all claimants must adhere to the COC, which includes stopping any development of any uninhabited area.

In this sense, China is fooling everybody including the US and the global community just like how it stole Mischief Reef.

The Philippines must be reminded of China’s “talk and take strategy”.

It fooled President Noynoy when Noynoy agreed to the withdrawal of ships from Scarborough. Eventually, the Philippine ships were called back to port but the Chinese simply laughed at President Noynoy for believing the Chinese.

Now, that the US has maintained the position of not intervening (unless a war breaks out) then China will probably pursue its objective.

Our only chance is the economic sanctions and making the US and its allies support that sanction. PNoy must work with the US in building a new trade pact that will replace whatever will be lost when we slap China with economic sanctions. Treat ASEAN as one solid economic bloc that will replace the lost Chinese market.

Definitely, we will enforce an enhanced sanction when the UN tribunal announces the decision. Let the US and the rest of the G7 plus EU support that effort.

Traits of the Communist Party – evil, deceit, incitement, unleashing the scum of society, espionage, robbery, fighting, elimination, and control.

One of the greatest threat to freedom and peace facing Asia now is the international outlaw Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

5 Reasons why buying Made in China is actually bad for you

West Philippine Dispute Timeline

Panatag Shoal Timeline

West Phillipine Sea Primer

Book proves Scarborough Shoal part of Philippine territory

From my experience as a Classical Chinese medical practitioner for over 30 years, most of my rehabilitation clients who have drug and alcohol addictions also have PTSD, sexual addictions and sexual behavior problems.

Acupuncture, herbs, acupressure with meditation and Qigong instructions have greatly assisted my rehabilitation clients and have been transformed into Self-realized individuals after their rehabilitation through Classical Chinese Medicine. They have tried conventional western therapies without success.

I believe that rehabilitating rather than condemning foreign servicemen who committed sexual crimes in the Philippines is the path to take. Future sexual crimes can be avoided by foreign servicemen through the availability of drug-free natural therapies such as Classical Chinese Medicine with Qigong instructions.

I also believe that EDCA with its implementing Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) should be reviewed rather than scrapped because the Philippines needs it to defend West Philippine Sea from China’s creeping incursions in the Philippine territories with joint military capability of US servicemen and military hardware.

Fanaticism and extreme measures by politicians and militants to scrap EDCA with VFA should be discouraged and replaced with common sense and respect for Filipino’s foremost constitutional right in protecting our territorial sovereignty from China’s creeping invasion rather than being fixated in the sexual crime of one US servicemen to a Filipino citizen which should be legally handled solely.

Recycling of sexual energy heals sexual behavior problems

I believe that the root behavioral problem of not only US Marines or any US servicemen but also other male soldiers from other countries doing crimes against women, transgender, bisexual or children is their own unguarded thoughts – that their worst enemy is not their opponent but their own unguarded thoughts.

Recycling of sexual energy (Jing Qi) through meditation and Qigong helps sexual behavior problems and PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder).

My six books on meditation and Qigong offer a solution to this sexual behavioral problem for healing and spiritual awakening. Peace be with you!

See Soul Affirmation and Meditation on Three Hearts

His seven books covered thoroughly in You Hold the Keys to Healing together with Workshops will show you how to know who you really are thereby healing holistically and returning to oneness. When you experientially know who you really are, the truth will set you free. See Oneness with Shiva

Master Pranic Healer Ricardo B Serrano, R.Ac. integrates pranic healing with Enlightenment Qigong forms, acupuncture, herbs and acupressure. He is a certified Qigong teacher trained by Pan Gu Shen Gong Master Ou Wen Wei, Sheng Zhen Gong Master Li Junfeng, Qi Dao Master Lama Tantrapa, Primordial Wuji Qigong Master Michael Winn, Zhan Zhuang Qigong Master Richard Mooney, Pranic Healing Grand Master Choa Kok Sui, Master Nona Castro and Mang Mike Nator. He is also a certified Merkabah teacher trained by Merkabah Master Alton Kamadon.

Ricardo B Serrano’s Hawaiian Name is Nalani: Nalani means “Serenity Of The Skies” in Hawaiian! You truly are someone who is able to find peace in the small pleasures of everyday life! You don’t take anything for granted and are able to focus your energy on appreciating all you have around you!

His seven books Return to Oneness with Shiva, Return to Oneness with the Tao, Return to Oneness with Spirit, Meditation and Qigong Mastery, Keys to Healing and Self-Mastery, Oneness with Shiva, and The Cure & Cause of Cancer comprise altogether his Master Pranic Healer thesis for the Integral Studies of Inner Sciences.

Meditation and Qigong Books and DVDs to experience healing and spiritual awakening:

The Meditation and Qigong Mastery book is ready to order at https://www.createspace.com/3680248

Return to Oneness with the Tao book is ready to order at https://www.createspace.com/3686484

Return to Oneness with Spirit through Pan Gu Shen Gong book is ready to order at https://www.createspace.com/3686468

Keys to Healing and Self-Mastery according to the Hathors book is ready to order at https://www.createspace.com/3715274

Return to Oneness with Shiva book is ready to order at https://www.createspace.com/3881891

Oneness with Shiva book is ready to order at https://www.createspace.com/4116335

The Cure & Cause of Cancer book is ready to order at https://www.createspace.com/4153673

 

To order the Maitreya (Shiva) Shen Gong & Omkabah Heart Lightbody Activation DVDs with shipping, cost $60, please click the Paypal button below:




 

 

 

 

 

First published June 25, 2015 © Innerway.ca

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