Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor
Washington, DC, United States (4E) – The United States plans to send its warships and warplanes to conduct naval exercises in both the Taiwan Strait separating China from the Republic of China (Taiwan), and in the South China Sea, in an unprecedented show of force meant to cow China.
The huge naval exercises, which might involve up to two Carrier Strike Groups (CSGs) of the U.S. Navy, might take place in November, according to sources in Washington. It comes at a time of simmering and dangerous tensions between the U.S. and China. The date for these exercises has yet to be approved.
The exercises are meant to warn China these contested waters remain international waters. They also intend to warn China of America’s ability to rapidly confront and do battle with it on the high seas.
Reports said the United States Pacific Fleet based in Hawaii has proposed a series of exercises for November. The exact status of the drills remains unclear at this time, however. Some sources say the drills remain “just an idea” while others assert the idea is a reality with an operational name.
The one week-long exercise will support the new National Defense Strategy (NDS). This document affirms the United States is engaged in a great power competition against Russia and China, and will arm itself and conduct itself accordingly.
News of this major U.S. naval exercises follow recent serious incidents in the East and South China Seas.
Last week, the U.S. Air Force flew two Boeing B-52H Stratofortress long-range strategic bombers over the South China Sea. Fighter jets of the Japan Air Self-Defense Force flew over the East China Sea and Sea of Japan to escort another B-52H.
On Sunday, the U.S. Navy destroyer USS Decatur (DDG-73), anArleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, had an “unsafe and unprofessional” encounter with the CNS Lanzhou (170), a Type 052C Luyang II-class guided-missile destroyer of the People’s Liberation Army Navy, as it conducted a freedom-of-navigation operation (FONOP) near the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea. Because of her captain’s aggressive behavior, the Lanzhou nearly collided with the Decatur.
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