FOR a refresher, this current discussion began two columns ago (last weekend) which showed massive deployment by the United States in the South China Sea of navy ships consisting of aircraft carriers and destroyers admittedly aimed at containing Chinese assertiveness in the Asia Pacific region. The article ended with the question: Will China risk countering that US force?
Pursuing the question now, we are afforded another video clip posted on YouTube, also by the publisher calling itself Southfront Analysis and Intelligence. Below are salient portions of the video presentation showing China’s own naval capabilities. The photographs (see below) grabbed from the video clip carry the original captions with which they were presented, thereby already giving us an insight on the actual war capability of China against the US.
Given the above details, we are faced with the realization of the scenario that will follow a ruling by the UN Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) adverse to China in its dispute with the Philippines over the West Philippine Sea. It is horrific.
Former Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (ISAFP) chief Lt. General Corpus, reacting to my earlier article titled “The issue of sovereignty in PH-China dispute over the WPS,” contributed his own insight on such horror, as posted on my Facebook account. He said, “From your article, it is clear that China will not honor any PCA ruling. Even if we win the legal battle, we will not benefit on fishing rights or even a single drop of oil from the area. China is willing and prepared to fight if we use the US as battering ram in our dispute with China. So the legal approach is a lose-lose proposition for the Philippines. Winning the legal battle in the PCA will be a temporary tactical victory for us, but a strategic defeat in the end. It will prompt China to dig in its heels and deepen the animosity between us and our giant neighbor, which will be the biggest economy in the world a few years from now. (Actually, China is now the largest economy in the world when measured in terms of purchasing power parity, or PPP, of GDP.)”
And then by way of clarifying matters contained in the video presentation, Vic advanced the opinion: “… the important thing to consider here is that China has the missiles to sink any number of aircraft carrier strike groups operating in the SCS and even beyond; within 4000 kms from the mainland. Just try to google DF21Ds and DF26Cs anti-ship ballistic missiles of China. And these missiles can also be used to destroy all the US bases surrounding China in the Philippines (as in EDCA), Japan, S. Korea, Australia, and Guam, together with all the stealth bombers and fighters contained in them. Maiwan lang eh mga nuclear submarines ng US, that can attack China from SCS as it is the area deep enough for US submarines to maneuver and strike China’s east coast where China’s population and industrial base is located. This is the reason why China is willing to risk a war with the US. For them, it is a matter of survival. It is not about oil, gas or fish resources in SCS.”
The latest pronouncements coming from China on the PCA dispute is a virtual conceding of Philippine victory in the legal battle. But to reiterate Lt. Gen. Corpus’ assessment of the situation, “Winning the legal battle in the PCA will be a temporary tactical victory for us; but a strategic defeat in the end.”