How Beijing may use South China Sea to create submarine haven

Beijing: For months, China’s visible construction of artificial islands and military facilities in the South China Sea has alarmed  US officials and many of China’s neighbours.

What is happening under the water is also worrisome,  several defence and security analysts say.

China has a growing fleet of nuclear submarines armed with ballistic missiles. The expansion of its claim on the South China Sea may be intended to create a deep-water sanctuary – known in military parlance as a “bastion” – where its submarine fleet could avoid detection. Continue reading

Diplomats debate whether Israel has lost status as ‘strategic asset’ to U.S.

Israel was said to have lost its strategic relationship with the United States, but the U.S. ambassador to Israel disagreed.

A former senior Israeli diplomat asserted that the United States no longer sees Israel as a strategic asset. Alon Pinkas, who served as consul-general in New York, said the loss has led to an asymmetry in the relationship between Jerusalem and Washington.

Full article: Diplomats debate whether Israel has lost status as ‘strategic asset’ to U.S. (World Tribune)