Asia

Prelude to war with China?


BY MARK J. VALENCIA
SPECIAL TO THE JAPAN TIMES

KANEOHE, HAWAII – The South China Sea contretemps has taken a decided turn for the worse. The United States has upped the ante in its contest of wills with China by deploying an aircraft carrier strike group to the South China Sea. This came on the heels of a warning from U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter of “specific consequences” for China’s continued “aggressive” actions in the Sea.

Now North Korea has nothing to lose

A new multiple launch rocket system is test fired in Pyongyang [REUTERS]
Andrei Lankov
Last Monday the North Korean government told the world that we should ready ourselves for a nuclear war on the Korean Peninsula. According to the official statement, North Korean armed forces "have a military operation plan of our style to liberate south Korea and strike the US mainland".

South China Sea Dispute Compels Washington to Ratify Sea Law


James Borton, Geopolitical Monitor
The upcoming US-ASEAN summit on February 15-16 in Rancho Mirage, California provides an opportunity for the Obama administration to boldly demonstrate its rebalance towards Asia, and for the U.S. Senate to assert America’s national interests by ratifying the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
Since the ten countries that make up ASEAN are home to 660 million people and represent the world’s seventh largest economy, it’s vital to demonstrate proof of strategic commitment to US allies, to denounce China’s militarization of outposts, and to uphold freedom of navigation in the South China Sea.

How American client states sponsor terrorism in West Asia

KAMAL MITRA CHENOY
NATO sides with Turkey and bombs Syria because Erdogan-owned BMZ helps the US sell stolen Iraqi oil.Now in bits and pieces, the real story of ISIS and the NATO policies is coming out. It is clear that the NATO attack on President Bashar al Assad had more to do with reordering the power structure, than being driven by getting a democratic regime. Syria has been providing arms and funds to Hezbollah.

Containing Islamic extremism in Southeast Asia


By Jon Connars
“Our nation and people should not be afraid, we will not be defeated by these acts of terror”, said a calm Indonesian President JokoWidodo following the deadly January 14th terror attack in Jakarta, when eight people were killed by ISIS jihadists in broad daylight in the heart of the city – four of them civilians – by a group made up of Malaysian and Indonesian terrorists armed with weapons from the Philippines. The attack is the first time ISIS strikes so far from its Middle Eastern heartland and signals a strategic shift for the terrorist group that calls for a rethink of ASEAN’s counter-terrorism strategies.

Upholding the Asian Order


Project Syndicate, Brahma Chellaney
NEW DELHI – China’s ambition to reshape the Asian order is no secret. From the “one belt, one road” scheme to the Beijing-based Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, major Chinese initiatives are gradually but steadily advancing China’s strategic objective of fashioning a Sino-centric Asia. As China’s neighbors well know, the country’s quest for regional dominance could be damaging – and even dangerous.

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