China sends ships to Senkaku-Diaoyu after US comments

by Chris Zappone

The Chinese send ships around the Senkaku-Diaoyu Islands in response to Clinton’s statement, according to The Times of India.

China is upset with a statement by United States secretary of state Hillary Clinton, who said on Friday that her government was opposed to “any unilateral actions” to undermine Japanese authority over the islands.

 Here’s my favorite part.

The Chinese action comes amid new Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s South East Asia tour. Beijing views this as an attempt to build up anti-China sentiment in ASEAN, which includes countries like Vietnam and Philippines who have territorial disputes with China in the region.

You see, Japan, which, whether they will call it one or not, has a dispute with China but is not allowed to make diplomatic overtures to Vietnam and the Philippines, which also have disputes with China. Countries that have a common cause in opposing China should not be allowed to fraternise with each other. Personally, I don’t think Japan needs to do much coaxing to bring Vietnam and the Philippines to shared perspective on China.

Obviously, I am focusing on the wording of this particular article. But it does hint at this particular Chinese delusion that they seem to be feeding themselves. China is automatically correct about all disputes and for any country in the region to the do the natural thing, the expected thing in response, is itself an affront to China. China recognises its own unfliching righteousness and any country that doesn’t do the same is a scheming devil. There is a certifiable realism deficit here.

NYTimes has a piece on China’s response to Clinton. Jane Perlez notes that the leader of the Japanese coalition partner New Komeito Party is due in Beijing. Natsuo Yamaguchi is aiming to ease China-Japan tensions.

The New Komeito Party has been involved in previous reconciliation efforts with China, most notably in 1972 when China and Japan resumed normal diplomatic relations with each other.