A 2010 article that foretold what was to come and now is here:
Is U.S. naval power in the South China Sea the unstoppable force it once was?
Thirsting for the oil in the waters that break upon China’s shores, Beijing has recently intensified its claim to the entire 1.3 million square miles of the South China Sea. Since China’s assertion competes with claims by the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan, it has prompted a pledge from the U.S. for increased involvement in the disputes to guarantee free trade and navigation throughout the region. But a Wall Street Journal article about recent military trends in the South Pacific region suggests that Washington’s pledge is insufficiently backed, and more so every month.
DISCUSSIONS are under way at the ‘highest levels’ regarding plans by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy to build a base at Walvis Bay in the next 10 years.
According to reports in the Chinese media, Walvis Bay will be one of 18 naval bases that will be established in various regions: Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Mynanmar in the northern Indian Ocean; Djibouti, Yemen, Oman, Kenya, Tanzania and Mozambique in the western Indian Ocean; and Seychelles and Madagascar in the central South Indian Ocean.
“These three strategic lines will further enhance China’s effectiveness in taking responsibility for maintaining the safety of international maritime routes thereby maintaining regional and world stability,” the media reports said.
PORT VILA, Vanuatu — First it was the Pacific Century, then the Asia Pacific Century, then the Asian Century with a recent nod towards the Chinese Century. Now we are hearing of the Indo-Pacific Century. Hollywood to Bollywood, as one US military officer put it recently.
A great sweep of ocean from India to the eastern shores of California is the strategic big picture, we are told. Continue reading