Category Archives: Japan

Japan defence paper slams China’s ‘coercive’ maritime demands – Business Insider

Japan on Tuesday slammed Beijing’s bid to reclaim land in the South China Sea as a “coercive attempt” to force through sweeping maritime claims, in a defence paper that comes as Tokyo tries to expand the role of its military.

Tokyo said China was acting “unilaterally and without compromise”, as it also highlighted concern about North Korea’s nuclear programme and Russian moves in violence-wracked Ukraine.

The white paper accused Beijing of “raising concerns among the international community” in ramped-up criticism from last year’s report, an annual summary of Japan’s official view on defence matters.

“China, particularly over maritime issues, continues to act in an assertive manner, including coercive attempts at changing the status quo, and is poised to fulfil its unilateral demands without compromise,” said the report titled “Defense of Japan”.

Japan defence paper slams China’s ‘coercive’ maritime demands – Business Insider

China risk prompts wargames ramp-up

Australia, India, Japan and the US are all stepping up wargames in the Indo-Pacific in response to China’s sabre rattling over disputed islands in the South and East China Sea.

Australia will despatch warships and aircraft to the Bay of Bengal in October to take part in inaugural wargames with India.

The moves come with Japan joining Australia’s massive bilateral exercise with the US – Talisman Sabre – which is now under way in Australia’s north and involves up to 30,000 US and Australian troops.

“The US, India, Japan and Australia are all increasing their involvement in military exercises and a lot of that is being driven by concern about China,” Dr Davies said.

“And there are a lot more warships being bought by regional navies and more kit means more strategic competition,” he said.

China risk prompts wargames ramp-up

Japan doubles number of ships around disputed Diaoyu Islands after China sends vessels to the area | South China Morning Post

Japan is to double the size of its naval presence in waters around a set of disputed islands that are also claimed by China.

Less than a week after two ships from China’s coastguard entered a zone around the Diaoyu Islands that Japan claims as the Senkaku Islands, Tokyo announced that it would dispatch a further six of its own coastguard ships to the region.

Six Japanese patrol vessels are already tasked with protecting Japan’s claimed territory but there are growing concerns about increasing Chinese assertiveness.

When the Chinese crews of the Haijing 2307 and 2337 were challenged last week by a Japanese coastguard ship, they replied the islands were the “inherent territory of China” and that the surrounding waters were also Chinese.

Japan doubles number of ships around disputed Diaoyu Islands after China sends vessels to the area | South China Morning Post

Was Japan building a nuclear bomb? Notebooks uncovered in Kyoto show how far wartime scientists had got | South China Morning Post

The notebooks are dated October and November 1944 and were apparently the findings of Sakae Shimizu, a researcher who worked for Bunsaku Arakatsu, known as the foremost nuclear scientist in Japan in the 1940s.

Arakutsu had studied in Cambridge and under Einstein at Berlin University and in 1943 was tasked with achieving the separation of Uranium-235 with centrifuges. The research was given the code-name F-Go Project.

Due to a chronic shortage of raw materials, progress on the project, as well as a parallel scheme by the army, was slow. It was also disrupted by air raids on Japan as the war wore on, although the Allies were not apparently aware of the nuclear programmes and did not target the research centres.

In April 1945, the army’s project was abandoned when the research facility in Tokyo was badly damaged in air raids.

Had the weapon been perfected before Japan’s surrender, however, there is little likelihood a desperate government in Tokyo would not have used it against its enemies, given the chance.

Was Japan building a nuclear bomb? Notebooks uncovered in Kyoto show how far wartime scientists had got | South China Morning Post

Japan Unleashed: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly | The National Interest

A fight between Japan and China remains the ugliest possible outcome of Japan’s newly-implemented national security policies. Japan’s invasion of China in WWII engendered an inextricable historical feud between the two nations. While Japan may never offer a formal apology for the atrocity, China feels that no compensation from Japan can mitigate the crime. China–Japan relations have been hampered by this incessant problem. Now that Japan and China are pitted against each other in a putative contest for supremacy in Asia, an unleashed Japan may stage a tough match with a rising China. Provocative moves on either side could trigger a showdown. The increased Chinese and Japanese militarization around the Senkaku Islands portends the possibility of such a conflict. Though no shots have been fired (yet) in the region, it is not difficult to imagine how this regional powder keg could be set off by a small miscalculation between the two nations. For example, conflict could be sparked by the sailing of a Chinese vessel within the Senkaku Islands’ twelve mile territorial waters or an unsavory interaction between Chinese and Japanese fighter jets in the two nations’ overlapping air defense identification zones. Given each nation’s military capacity and economic power, a war between the world’s number two and three economic powers would be long and costly. Adding fervent Chinese and Japanese nationalism to the mix creates an extremely potent brand of international conflict.

Japan Unleashed: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly | The National Interest

China plans to build coast guard base near Senkaku Islands: sources | The Japan Times

The China Coast Guard, which has been sending vessels into waters around the Senkaku Islands more frequently since 2012, plans to build a large base in Wenzhou, Zhejiang Province, to enhance monitoring of the chain, sources close to the matter said Saturday.

By building the base in Wenzhou, which is close to the Japan-administered islets, the coast guard is apparently hoping to bolster support for surveillance vessels so China can strengthen its claim to them.

China calls the uninhabited islets Diaoyu, but they are also claimed by nearby Taiwan, which calls them Tiaoyutai.

The move came after revelations that China’s military is building large base facilities on the Nanji Islands, which are in the same province and even closer to the Senkakus, indicating that Beijing is poised to test Japan through concerted efforts by the military and coast guard.

China plans to build coast guard base near Senkaku Islands: sources | The Japan Times

You may not want nuclear war but nuclear war wants you. To me this sounds like only nuclear war is going to stop China. Not that we want that but China doesn’t seem to care. Realistically, the US is not going to start a nuclear war with China. Instead, China will be starting a nuclear war with the US. Hey, it’s perfectly clear that China really doesn’t care about nuclear war. It does whatever it wants. Unless something significantly changes on the China side real soon, we are headed for nuclear war.

In my opinion, if there hasn’t been a nuclear war by the end of Obama’s term in office then the US should count itself lucky.

Rift Grows Over South China Sea as Japan Joins U.S.-Australia Military Exercise

Japan will join a major U.S.-Australian military exercise for the first time in a sign of growing security links between the three countries as tensions fester over China’s island building in the South China Sea.

All three nations have said they were concerned about freedom of movement through the seas and air in the disputed South China Sea, where China is creating seven artificial islands in the Spratly archipelago, a vital shipping corridor.

Some security experts say China might impose air and sea restrictions in the Spratlys once it completes construction work that includes at least one military airstrip. China has said it had every right to set up an Air Defence Identification Zone but that current conditions did not warrant one.

China claims most of the South China Sea. The Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Taiwan and Brunei also have overlapping claims.

The Japanese personnel will embed with U.S. forces while 500 New Zealand troops will join Australian contingents, according to the Australian Defence Force website.

Rift Grows Over South China Sea as Japan Joins U.S.-Australia Military Exercise

China, Be Afraid: The Mighty U.S.-Japan Alliance Is Going Global | The National Interest Blog

Going global also reflects Japan’s larger aims to see itself as a significant international player. Abe has travelled extensively to spread the message not only that Japan’s economy was back in business but also that it has a global role. But this vision is driven not only by Abe’s ambitions for Japan. It also reflects the reality that its rivalry and competition with China—whose rise is the primary driver of the revised Guidelines—is playing out internationally.

The driving force behind the revision of the Guidelines is China’s revival and the growing rivalry and tension this is causing with Japan. Yet the document is extremely deft in its treatment of China. …

China, Be Afraid: The Mighty U.S.-Japan Alliance Is Going Global | The National Interest Blog

Japan Rising | Washington Free Beacon

Japanese Vice Defense Minister Kenji Harada characterized the security situation in East Asia as increasingly “severe” and warned that tensions with China over control of Japan’s Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea have reached menacing proportions.

“It is extremely dangerous,” Harada said in an interview of China’s attempts to enforce an air defense zone covering the islands located west of Okinawa.

Dubbing the Japan military buildup “integrated mobile defense,” Harada said, “we have to respond to the situation seamlessly and very readily.”

Chinese ships and aircraft have stepped up intrusions into airspace and waters around the islands since the air defense zone was set up in 2013 covering the islands. Japanese F-15 warplanes have made frequent intercepts of Chinese aircraft.

Japan Rising | Washington Free Beacon

This is just a friendly reminder, in case you forgot, that China and Japan are still at a tipping point and could realistically tip into war with each other. If they start shooting at each other then things could escalate fairly rapidly. If the US enters any military conflict then we could be looking at a nuclear war.

Overall, there is a risk of nuclear war between the US and China and Russia. Additionally, Iran is menacing Israel in a fairly serious manner. Iranian allies are positioning themselves to literally put the existence of Israel at risk in the next war. With three spheres of influence at a tipping point, how long can things continue as they are without blowing up?

Michael Auslin: China and Japan, Spiraling Toward Confrontation – WSJ

It’s too simplistic to say that Beijing and Tokyo are on a collision course. Yet Japan shows no signs of buckling to Chinese pressure. Its military consistently responds to China’s expanding presence in northeast Asia’s skies and waters. That, in turn, raises the stakes for Beijing, which cannot afford to be seen backing down from its claims. Both sides have effectively made the Senkakus (called the Diaoyu Islands by China) a symbol of their determination to assert their national interest.

The two may be maneuvering themselves into a real confrontation, regardless of tepid diplomatic attempts to reduce tension. Neither wants to risk being seen as weak by the other or overshadowed in the eyes of regional states. So they are locked in a slowly spiraling competition reminiscent of the European powers in the late 19th century. As Chinese academic Shen Dingli has put it, “the more the U.S. and Japan do, the more China will do.”

That attitude reveals the stakes for America, too. Washington policy makers may like to think that their attempts to develop better working relations with Beijing should be taken at face value. But the Chinese see the Obama administration’s attempts to deepen its alliance with Japan as proof of an encirclement policy dedicated to blocking China’s rise, which prevents U.S. diplomats from playing the role of honest broker between China and Japan.

Michael Auslin: China and Japan, Spiraling Toward Confrontation – WSJ

This is a real problem because China can’t back down, and losing any kind of real conflict battle is not an option (for China). Therefore, there is the substantial risk of rapid escalation should a conflict involve real aggression – the loss of life. So the clock is ticking.

Let us also remember that China itself has become internally unstable. There is real risk that the current government might not last. What would come next is not clear, but the current leadership has to be worried.

I think if you look at China in total then the way forward is not going to be smooth. It risks revolution or overthrow, or it goes to war against Japan and shortly thereafter America. Obviously, these are not good options. Since America is sleeping soundly, you need to make sure you aren’t.