Why China is risking war with US


Part II

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.)”

chinaAnd 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.”


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  1. carlos gemino on

    Asserting and winning the legal battle in the PCA for the militarily weak country like Phippines is the right step against a bully country like China, then the Philippine leaders do have the moral basis to resolve the issue peacefully after the ruling not by war as perceived by you. China will be judged by the community of nations and history depending on their actions after the ruling. The General’s assessment of the situation and you presenting a horrific scenario is the attitude that needs to be changed if you want to be proud as Filipino.

    • Unfortunately the moral judgement of the nations count for nothing if the “rogue” nations have the backing of the most powerful nation of the world.

      Israel for eg can illegally occupy Palestine & chase away native Arabs to make space for newly arrived “Jews” from the ex Soviet Union.

      Iraq can be invaded without UN approval & on the basis of faulty intellegience that it had WMD which was never found.

      There is no morality in the relationships between nations only self interests…..

      It would be wise for all nations to approach on this basis……irrespective of the morality of the individual cases!!

  2. Mariano Patalinjug on

    Yonkers,New York
    03 July 2016

    So this Lt-Gen.Corpus’s carefully considered opinion is that in a military confrontation between the United States and China, over the ongoing simmering dispute in the South China Sea, China will very likely defeat the United States.

    That is his personal opinion–and it is defeatist. And wrong to boot!

    The United States is still the mightiest military power in the whole world. Its defense budget for 2016 is in the order of $700 billion, which is more than the combined defense budgets of all the other 27 members of NATO, and more than half the combined military budgets of all nations of the world. That is a fact which this Gen. Corpus obviously forgets or deliberately disregards for his own unclear purposes.

    Two US Nimitz-class nuclear aircraft carrier Strike Forces are even now engaged in drills in the Philippine Sea, close to the possible theater of conflict between the US and China, which is the South China Sea: the USS John C. Stennis and the USS Ronald Reagan. Obviously, these are part of US advance preparations in the event that the cold war between China and the US over the SCS should suddenly and unexpectedly turn hot.

    Let me just remind Gen. Corpus that accompanying one of these Strike Forces are the lethal Ohio-class nuclear submarines, one of which carries 24 ICBMs, each one with a multiple warhead of several thermonuclear bombs. One of these thermonuclear bombs has enough power to completely wipe out a city like Shanghai, or Beijing. So it is easy to see that one US Ohio-class nuclear sub has more than enough of these thermonuclear bombs to level all of China’s coastal cities.

    If Gen. Corpus does not know this, or chooses to ignore this FACT, he has no business being a General; he should be reduced to the rank of Private.


  3. jaime protacio on

    This general was paid by the Chinese no doubt as part of their misguided propaganda machine. This general should be tried for treason.

  4. Indeed, it is a war tsai-nha is so afraid to lose that they might just dig in at this point. Remember the time when the US out of pique staged a SARS attack that literally made HK a ghost town? A repeat can make Guangdong Province which provides 60% of their GDP literally cower and might create a move for cessation from their beydying masters. With most of its citizens having had a taste of a better life in HK, guangdong citizens might use the hostilities to trigger independence moves which will ultimately decimate tsai-nha. Even Taiwan has started to stand up to tsai-nha. Note that even a top tsai-nhis general admitted that Japan can physically obliterate their whole eastern navy in just four hours. Isn’t that a signal that we might as well fast track building our naval assets? In fact, the US once called tsai-nha to tell them that they can just do one financial trick and the tsai-nha “financial might” is gone in a split second. Surely, tsai-nha can never risk a nuclear war and this is where I beg to disagree with Vic.

  5. Mauro and Mr. Corpuz has failed to mentioned the internal issues within Chinese Communist Party not to include their dispute with Hongkong and Taiwan people. With regards to military confrontation, before their missiles fly to US bases they will be shutdown and they better be ready with all the cruise missiles hitting the major bases in China. One missile hitting the biggest dam in China will wipe out millions of Cinese. If this is to scare most Filipinos then you are completely WRONG! We Filipinos can fight the Chinese even without the americans. We did it with Spain, US and Japanese. We have capabilities to build missiles and other armaments. What is at stake here Mauro and Corpuz is our reputation to be brave and fighters. Do you still know how to sing our National anthem…”ang mamatay ng dahil sa iyo”.

  6. Lito Magbanua on

    I don’t understand. Why did the good General said that, for the Chinese, ” it is a matter of survival. It is not about oil, gas or fish resources in SCS.”

    • What the general meant is that the South China Sea is basic to the security of China because its depth is ideal for U.S. nuclear submarines to hide and launch its missiles from to destroy China’s coastal provinces where its industrial might and defenses are located. Few Filipinos realize the primacy of security for countries that value its sovereignty and dignity… as many Filipinos don’t even mind that the other Asian countries continue to view the Philippines as a mere colony of the U.S. today and more so after it allowed the U.S. bases to return… But the existence and survival of the Philippine nation is even in an even worse situaiton than China as China is dfending itself but the Philippines is being used by the U.S. as a decoy for China’s retaliation when it reacts to the U.S. attack and hits the U.S. military bases in the Philippines with missiles including nuclear missiles as the U.S. is hiding nuclear weapons in its bases here…

    • A shooting war, IF IT EVER comes to that with a US led UN force, enforcing the Pro-Philippine PCA ruling is not a simple “enforcement police action” when viewed from the Chinese perspective.

      To them it will be a clear aggression / invasion of their sovereignty as a nation

    • victor n. corpus on

      True, Mariano, those Ohio class submarines can devastate China’s east coast where China’s industrial base and most of its 1.3 billion population are concentrated – in a matter of minutes. And the ideal place to do that is in the South China Sea where the waters are deep enough for US submarines to maneuver and launch a surprise first strike. Hence, for China, the SCS issue is a matter of survival for their nation and civilization or their very own extinction. So on the SCS issue, what do you expect China to do? In fact, they have already sent their own nuclear submarines (Type O94As) on the US west coast for a second strike in case of a US first strike – in coordination with Russia. And both China and Russia are also ready to fire their own ICBMs hidden in tunnels that can hit any part of the US. So you see, Mariano, we are in grave danger of a nuclear holocaust, and the Philippines is at its epicenter because of some foolish leaders and justices opting for EDCA.