…but delivered with the same strange language Hillary Clinton used.
The US doesn’t have a view on the “ultimate sovereignty” of the islands but it opposes any effect to push Japan away from them. I guess the implication being that one day if a China-Japan sharing arrangement occurred, or if administration were for some reason handed over to a country other than Japan, it would need to happen in the context of a lawful transition, rather than the kind of naval adventures on the seas-approach we’re seeing now.
Defense Sec’y Chuck Hagel was explicit about US opposition to “unilateral or coercive” action.
None of this should come as a surprise to Chinese, who he met with days before.
The question is how is the message is interpreted among the Chinese coast guard patrol ships that make routine visits to the disputed islands.