It is clear and unequivocal: how can we prevent the China Sea from becoming what the Persian Gulf has become, a zone where the United States has multiplied naval bases and maritime coalitions?
And to do as Iran has done, namely, “neutralize the military bases so that they are nothing but burdens and easy and favorite targets” while trying to undermine both small and large naval coalitions.
This is what China has just done: the Chinese Ministry of Defense has decided to order the crews of the country’s Coast Guard ships to attack military and civilian vessels without further warning. Such an order was given after the strike group of the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt approached China’s territorial waters, while the Coast Guard was authorized to prevent the passage of U.S. ships and, in case of provocation and aggression, to immediately attack the enemy. On Sunday, the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt and his attack group entered the South China Sea for “routine operations” following a series of anti-China provocations that marked Biden’s first days in the White House.
But the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress – China’s highest legislative body – has given the Coast Guard the power to use “all necessary means”, including firing on foreign vessels, to protect areas where China claims jurisdiction, the South China Morning Post reported, citing the text of the document. The legislation, passed on Friday, would also allow Coast Guard forces to launch pre-emptive strikes against foreign vessels without prior warning if commanders deem such action necessary, and includes a provision for Coast Guard personnel to board and inspect foreign vessels. It also allows Coast Guard forces to destroy structures belonging to other countries built in areas claimed by China. So are U.S. ship boardings like this CGRI operation against the British Steno Impero in 2019 in the Persian Gulf in sight? Possibly. Some even see it as an exchange of techniques and procedures for securing territorial waters that would have resulted from the Beijing-Tehran strategic agreement announced in June 2020.
The spokeswoman of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Hua Chunying, declared that the law was in line with international practices, adding that Beijing “will remain committed to maintaining peace and stability at sea”. Two days ago, China flew 6 H-6K strategic bombers and 15 fighters to prove to the US aircraft carriers its seriousness, forcing them to halt their attempt to enter Chinese territorial waters.
Somewhat like the Persian Gulf, the United States began conducting “freedom of navigation” missions in the region in the early 2010’s, after then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton described the waterway as a “matter of American national interest”. On Saturday, new U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin spoke by phone with Japanese Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi and promised that the United States would help Tokyo defend the Senkaku Islands, threatening Beijing outright. This was the last straw that caused the base to overflow. Especially since on Sunday, the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command announced that a naval carrier strike group led by the USS Theodore Roosevelt had entered the South China Sea a day earlier “to conduct routine operations,” including missions “to ensure freedom of the seas,” build security partnerships and “promote maritime security. But Biden’s U.S. may regret this gesture.
by Basit Abbasi – CCTV