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China Warns U.S. as Korea Tensions Rise

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posted on Nov, 27 2010 @ 12:50 AM
By JEREMY PAGE in Dandong, China and JAY SOLOMON and JULIAN E. BARNES in Washington

DANDONG, China—Beijing on Friday lodged its first official protest of a joint U.S.-South Korean military exercise planned for Sunday, even as the aircraft carrier USS George Washington steamed toward the region.

North Korea also responded angrily. "The situation on the Korean peninsula is inching closer to the brink of war," the state controlled Korean Central News Agency responded Friday to the maneuvers, which are set to take place in the Yellow Sea between the Koreas and northeastern China.

The strong talk was the latest fallout from North Korea's hour-long artillery attack of a South Korean island on Tuesday that killed four people. The next day, the U.S. and South Korea said planned joint exercises would go ahead over the weekend, heightening fears in some quarters that already-tense relations between North and South Korea—and their respective international protectors, China and the U.S.—could be heading for a showdown.

Yet China's outwardly defiant response belies a more delicate political reality: Beijing's continued support of North Korea's erratic, martial regime is beginning to extract real costs. China's statement Friday included a face-saving formulation that appeared to open the door for a scenario China has long sought to avert—a U.S. aircraft carrier, a potent symbol of U.S. military might, plying the edge of Chinese waters.

China's Foreign Ministry suggested it wouldn't escalate its protests against the naval exercises as long as they took place outside China's "exclusive economic zone," a term of international maritime law for an area where countries enjoy mineral and fishing rights, generally 200 nautical miles from a country's coast.

"We hold a consistent and clear-cut stance on the issue," Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei was quoted as saying in a ministry statement. "We oppose any party to take any military actions in our exclusive economic zone without permission."

The U.S. doesn't announce precise locations for such maneuvers for security reasons. But there are parts of the Yellow Sea, including those near South Korea, that fall outside China's exclusive economic zone, giving the U.S. areas where it can conduct drills without incurring China's wrath.

China's stance appeared firmer in July, when officials said they opposed any military exercises in the entire Yellow Sea. Beijing protested so vociferously that the U.S. and South Korea shifted planned maneuvers to the Sea of Japan, east of South Korea.

China has long frustrated U.S. efforts to bring its nuclear-armed neighbor to heel, fearing any radical change could sow chaos in the region and potentially lead to a unified Korea with a U.S. military presence directly on its border. Beijing refused this week to blame North Korea for Tuesday's attack. Privately, its officials maintain, the weekend's exercises could be a grave mistake that risk further provoking the North.

But current and former U.S. officials who have worked on North Korea said Friday that they saw China in a growing quandary in how to square its support for Pyongyang with the regime's continued provocations.

Beijing has sought in recent months to deepen its economic and strategic relationship with North Korea, despite U.S. objections, arguing it would help contain leader Kim Jong Il's nuclear work and military provocations. As Pyongyang has continued to challenge the international community, however, China has been placed in an increasingly weakened position to protest U.S. military action.

"China is having a much harder time in defending its policy, but they only have themselves to blame," said Michael Green, who oversaw Asia policy for the White House during George W. Bush's first term. "You talk to any Chinese official, and they're furious with the North Koreans."

Beijing is also facing renewed criticism from Chinese foreign-policy experts, journalists and Internet activists who question whether unqualified support for North Korea is still in China's interests.

China's apparently softened stance on Yellow Sea exercises appears to demonstrate a concern that the North Korean crisis will overshadow a planned trip to Washington in January by President Hu Jintao. It may also reflect an acknowledgment that China would be unlikely to prevent the U.S. and South Korea from staging their drills following the week's attack, requiring a compromise to avoid appearing weak before an increasingly nationalist and demanding Chinese public.

U.S. military officials insisted Friday that the exercise scheduled for this weekend shouldn't be interpreted as anything but an attempt to deter North Korea from further attacks on the South.

"This exercise is not directed at China," said Capt. Darryn James, a Pentagon spokesman. "The purpose is to strengthen the deterrence against North Korea."

U.S. officials on Friday said the Obama administration continues to focus its diplomacy in Northeast Asia on gaining China's cooperation to exert more pressure on North Korea.

China also made an attempt Friday to mediate among all sides in the crisis, with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaking by telephone with Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi. State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley, briefed on the phone conversation, said "the secretary encouraged Beijing to send a clear message that North Korea's behavior is unacceptable."

Mr. Yang, who also talked with officials from North and South Korea, said he was "worried" by this week's developments, according to a statement from the Foreign Ministry. He urged the two Koreas to stay calm and resolve their differences through negotiations, saying it was important to "control the situation" and avoid further incidents, according to the ministry statement.

President Barack Obama is expected to speak with Hu Jintao on the North Korea crisis in the coming days, according to U.S. officials.

The White House declined to comment on China's response so far to the North Korea attack, noting that U.S. consultations with Beijing are ongoing. "The president's conversation with Hu Jintao will be extremely important," said a senior U.S. official.

The U.S. has been planning a naval exercise in the Yellow Sea since July, when an expanded list of training events was announced in response to the March sinking of the South Korean patrol ship Cheonan, which killed 46 sailors and was widely blamed on the North.

The July exercises also came after China had objected strongly to a speech by Mrs. Clinton in which she said that the U.S. had a national interest in protecting freedom of navigation in the South China Sea. Ever since, China and the U.S. have been engaged in a tussle for influence in the region, where many Southeast Asian nations that have territorial disputes with China are looking to beef up defense relations with the U.S.

Since July, military officials have acknowledged that they understand China's concerns with the exercises but have defended their intention to operate in the Yellow Sea. "These exercises will take place in international waters," Pentagon spokesman Capt. James said. "We routinely operate in international waters, east and west of the Republic of Korea."

"We have been completely transparent with China about our intent to conduct these exercise and their purpose," added a U.S. military official.

China has challenged U.S. vessels operating in what it considers its economic zone. In March 2009, Chinese vessels harassed the USNS Impeccable, a U.S. vessel staffed with civilians from the military Sealift Command. The Impeccable was in international waters but within China's exclusive economic zone.

The U.S. last conducted exercises in the Yellow Sea in October 2009. Those drills also involved the USS George Washington.

One high-level South Korean official said the maneuvers would be off South Korea's southwest coast, far from the disputed maritime border with North Korea.


With the negotiations between China and Russia, is it any wonder China would oppose any US presence near their country? I think we are headed to something big, and it may just be devastating to all involved?
edit on 27-11-2010 by Whereweheaded because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 27 2010 @ 12:56 AM
This could be a WWIII event, I realize a lot of people do not want to believe or think such a premise is possible but the very fact that China and the US use the Koreas as a proxy war is exactly why this could go past just a North/South Korean issue and war.

This is a high-stakes game, and if war breaks out is just another act in the on-going march towards WWIII. That said, it could also blow over and nothing will come of it. Sunday is the day to watch.

I'm hoping and praying for PEACE... not war. War is not an option in my opinion. It could spark a clash between two super-powers. If the US and China go to war, I think we will regret this Korean tiff immensely.

posted on Nov, 27 2010 @ 01:00 AM

Originally posted by YouAreDreaming
This could be a WWIII event, I realize a lot of people do not want to believe or think such a premise is possible but the very fact that China and the US use the Koreas as a proxy war is exactly why this could go past just a North/South Korean issue and war.

This is a high-stakes game, and if war breaks out is just another act in the on-going march towards WWIII. That said, it could also blow over and nothing will come of it. Sunday is the day to watch.

I'm hoping and praying for PEACE... not war. War is not an option in my opinion. It could spark a clash between two super-powers. If the US and China go to war, I think we will regret this Korean tiff immensely.

Agreed. I am particularly worried that if a war dose break out that they dont start drafting.

posted on Nov, 27 2010 @ 01:02 AM
If China openly sent such a carrier to a Country near to the USA, I'm sure there would be a similar repsonse.

posted on Nov, 27 2010 @ 01:13 AM
If China is prepared to back NK, it is definitely not worth getting into a WW3 scenario over South Korea. I don't think Americans really have the stomach for a new Korean war anyway, the last one we lost over 50,000 troops, I think we would stand to lose about the same or more if China gets involved. The war on terror is only around 10,000 deaths spread out over many years, nothing compared to what a second Korean war would bring.
Especially more so now since we have a division on the border, it will be wiped out within hours, thats at least 10,000-20,000 deaths right there.We don't really need to be involved in that part of the world anymore, the only reason we were there was because of the cold war, we need to withdraw from South Korea now. We will be doing what most of them want anyway, they always protest us.

posted on Nov, 27 2010 @ 01:17 AM
This is coming at a time of immense tensions. The euro zone is as of right now, collapsing. Wiki leaks are set to release information that has the US government scrambling over itself it more or less apologies in advance to it's allies.

If the wikileaks information raises tensions between the US and China well.... I think we have a developing situation on our hands that could lead down a path where no man thought.

I've just had a week off work, it kind of sucks that I start again tomorrow when all I really want to be doing is glued to any news outlet!

posted on Nov, 27 2010 @ 01:20 AM
Let's not forget people, that with the sanctions and " deals " that tie China to Russia now, would suggest a possible Soviet involvement. They ( Russia ), weren't afraid to join in on a lower scale all those years ago during the Korean war.

With Russia now putting their eggs into one basket in regards to their economy and currency value, it would be of interest to back their new allies being China. If China's economy was set to boom because of any war, Russia would also be set to gain as well.

posted on Nov, 27 2010 @ 01:27 AM
Similarly, Russia sent the biggest nuclear ship to Venezuela. The problem with these ships and subs, or even planes, is that in case of a real war scenario they are supposed to strike from a very short distance with nuclear missiles. Patriots couldn't stop the old Scuds of Saddam from afar, let alone the russian-made supersonic cruise missiles that in 5 min would reach every US city on the East Coast. Similarly, each US destroyer has about 100 tomahawks (subsonic), and theoretically each of them could be nuclear armed. Bush sent such destroyers twice to Black Sea, and to Baltic sea. Putin's reaction was 'they are within striking distance, very well armed. We will respond, not hysterically, but there will be a response.' The response came as the first Russian warship after Cold War to visit Cuba. If you remember the event, Condy got very nervous saying two ships cannot change the US dominance in the region. She forgot to tell the americans what those ships could do.

I don't know what the Chinese response would be if no WW3 starts. Perhaps economic?
In case the strategic planners have arranged the crisis to become WW3, then Russia and or China should attack first. It is unbelievable in USA, search for war plans now available online. The entire military especially of Russia is built as an offensive one, despite seems they have defense equal to or better than US. China with its missiles was behind USA 10 years ago, and no new data is released. It is believed China silently built up the nuclear arsenal as answer to the US antimissiles in Alaska and California. Other secret technologies such as laser weapons exist, and seem both countries are much more advanced than previously supposed. The first strike is not only possible, but it is the only way for the attacking side to have a chance to survive. USA knows that too, that's why it sends its nuclear armed ships and keeps expensive bases around the planet.

posted on Nov, 27 2010 @ 02:21 AM
reply to post by Whereweheaded

Well our families dog died of kidney failure due to Melamine laced dog food from China.

One of the children has elevated levels of lead"due to Chinese imported painted toys"

I say the real Enemy is the profiteers who undermined Ethics,Morals,Tradition,as well as Inspection.
Clearly the self interest of a few is extremely dangerous to global stability,and Humanity.

This is the detrimental results of the Social Engineers dropping the ball. Unfortunately, this minor error
(in their eyes) has global repercussions. It may be Decades before balance can be restored.

In the meantime,,,our dog is dead, and lead poisoning to a child results in learning disabilities.
Even the comedian Bob Hope would have considered this inexcusable and a blatant act of war.
Capitalism has failed us only because the jerks paid off/fired the Umpires,Referees, and Coaches.
We are to blame because we allowed it. Our Family Dog would still be alive now if Inspection was Enforced.
One more American child would be Pure. But no, the few profiteers don't care about ANY Country.
They live on Multi Million Dollar Yachts Anchored in International Waters.

But if you think this is bad, just wait. Communism is Insidious. Austerity Measures are just the Beginning.

Executioner for hire. I need a Job.
edit on 27-11-2010 by Wildmanimal because: Stupid Typo....sorry

posted on Nov, 27 2010 @ 01:59 PM
Everyone remember the amount of WW3 ideas originated after the SKorean ship sunk after being hit with a missile, and notice how high tensions were especially high and all thread topics read "SKorea on the brink of war!!", and now look, who remembers that ship sinking?

Theres definitely a reason why this war hasnt gotten huge yet, and theres a reason were not involved and until China or NKorea takes a shot at the US will we get the support necessary to get involved in another Korean War.

Then again im not counting out the idea of an inside-false flag attack to spark support. To be honest, I wish we stop f***ing around and realize these 2 countries will never settle until their opposition is blown off the earth.

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