Wednesday, 5 July 2017

U.S. Navy Sends Warship Near Disputed South China Sea Island


The Trump administration has sent a guided-missile destroyer near Triton Island in the South China Sea, according to a U.S. official, which may cause concern ahead of President Donald Trump’s meeting with his Chinese counterpart this week.

The U.S. Navy sent the destroyer USS Stethem within 12 nautical miles (22 kilometers) of Triton Island on Sunday, said the official, who wasn’t authorized to speak publicly. The warship was passing through those waters on the basis of innocent passage, the official said.

China, Taiwan and Vietnam all lay claim to Triton, a tiny speck that’s one of the Paracel Islands in the waters between Vietnam and the Philippines. Operations such as this are typically planned at least weeks in advance, the official said.
 
Still, the sea patrol move could signal that the U.S. is displeased with China based on the extent of its efforts to pressure North Korea to curb its missile and nuclear programs. The White House has made several moves in recent weeks, including announcing economic sanctions against Chinese companies with ties to North Korea.
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-07-02/u-s-navy-sends-warship-close-to-disputed-south-china-sea-island

All throughout the election Trump spoke about how US industry had been outsourced that led to huge job losses. He said things like “We don’t make things anymore”. He was right. He was also right about the real US unemployment rate being very high. He said it was 40% (based on a consideration of the participation rate) whereas according the Shadowstats site it is actually around 22%.

Trump is now talking up the economy and not talking about the rigged unemployment statistics. Behind the scenes I’m sure he knows that retail store closures are continuing and that the country is still in bad shape overall. The only real solution here is to bring back domestic production. The problem standing in his way is good relations with China and all the various captains of industry that are prepare to sell out US jobs in order to generate larger profits (that helps boost their performance salaries and shareholder payouts). Increased tensions with China satisfy military and geostrategic minded nationalists (as opposed to globalists).

China’s own actions are setting themselves up for a fall too - so long as the US does not back down. If tensions rise that lead to tariffs the Chinese economy will take a hit. Their finances will come under more pressure which will/might impact upon their military spending.

The US has a lot to gain in ratcheting up tensions with China in order to fix the unfair global trading playing field and to undermine Chinese ambitions in the South China sea.

Related:

US Sanctions Chinese Bank, Plans To Sell $1.4bn Worth Of Arms To Taiwan

[Posted at the SpookyWeather blog, July 5th, 2017.]

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