The South China Sea Crisis

US and Chinese military aircraft in second close encounter in East Asia

By Peter Symonds, 9 June 2016

The incident took place amid Washington’s increasingly aggressive stance toward Beijing over maritime disputes in the East China and South China Seas.

US confronts China over trade, investment in Beijing talks

By Peter Symonds, 7 June 2016

US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew set the tone for the annual dialogue with imperious demands that China slash overcapacity in steel and aluminium.

Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore

Washington and Beijing draw battle lines over South China Sea

By James Cogan, 6 June 2016

US Defence Secretary Ashton Carter threatened that China “could end up erecting a Great Wall of self-isolation.”

Sydney University’s US Studies Centre: A bastion of pro-war strategy and propaganda

By Oscar Grenfell—SEP candidate for Grayndler, 2 June 2016

The centre’s significance is underscored by the decision of Sydney University authorities to ban an anti-war meeting of the SEP on the Anzac Day weekend last year.

Union of Concerned Scientists warns of US-China nuclear war

By Peter Symonds, 1 June 2016

While graphically warning of the danger of nuclear conflict, the UCS has no proposal to prevent it—other than a vain hope in a diplomatic solution.

China prepares to send nuclear submarines into Pacific Ocean

By Peter Symonds, 31 May 2016

Chinese submarines will be deployed in an effort to prevent Beijing’s nuclear arsenal being wiped out in an American nuclear first strike.

The danger of nuclear war between the US and China

By Peter Symonds, 30 May 2016

A conspiracy of silence reigns over the preparations for war, aimed at deadening the consciousness of the population to the rising risks of nuclear conflict.

Indian warships enter South China Sea

By Deepal Jayasekera, 28 May 2016

While aggressively pursuing New Delhi’s own strategic ambitions, the Indian naval patrol is in line with the US “pivot to Asia” and preparations for war against China.

Australian election: Military spending is war preparation, not “industry policy”

By James Cogan—SEP candidate for the Senate in NSW, 26 May 2016

The greatest expenditure on hardware for the Australian military since World War II is being cynically portrayed as a public works program.

Obama seeks Vietnam military ties amid rising tensions with China

By Bill Van Auken, 23 May 2016

Part of the discussions in Hanoi will involve the pre-positioning of US military hardware at bases used four decades ago to wage war on the Vietnamese people.

Spy plane “intercept” highlights US push for South China Sea confrontation

By Mike Head, 20 May 2016

Allegations that Chinese aircraft “unsafely” intercepted a US surveillance plane underscore Pentagon calls for a “trigger” for conflict with China.

The queen’s China “gaffe”

By Robert Stevens, 16 May 2016

The state visit by China’s Xi Jinping to Britain last year proceeded despite trenchant complaints from sections of the military and intelligence apparatuses.

Singapore expands military training in Australia

By John Roberts, 16 May 2016

The intensified military cooperation between Singapore and Australia is another part of the escalating US “pivot” against China.

War danger grows following new US provocation in South China Sea

By James Cogan, 11 May 2016

US imperialism continues to stoke up long-standing, competing claims over territory in the South China Sea to militarily encircle and destabilise the Chinese regime.

May Day 2016: Oppose the drive to war in the Asia-Pacific

By James Cogan, 4 May 2016

James Cogan, national secretary of the Socialist Equality Party (Australia), delivered the following speech to the International Online May Day Rally.
LInk to audio

US senators demand escalation of military confrontation with China

By James Cogan, 2 May 2016

The rhetoric reflects the fact that major figures in the US political establishment are more than prepared to trigger a war.

Australia awards $50 billion submarine contract to France

By James Cogan, 28 April 2016

The contract also serves the US and Australian aim of drawing France more closely into the strategic planning for war with China.

US warplanes sent near disputed South China Sea reef

By Peter Symonds, 27 April 2016

The use of American ground attack aircraft and special forces helicopters near a Chinese-claimed islet was designed to send a menacing message to Beijing.

US defence secretary sends menacing message to China

By Peter Symonds, 16 April 2016

Carter used his visit to the Philippines to unveil the basing of US military forces in the country and again blame China for mounting tensions in the South China Sea.

Stimulus measures ease slowdown in Chinese growth

By Nick Beams, 16 April 2016

While government stimulus measures helped to ease the slowdown in Chinese growth, trade figures continued to slump, reflecting stagnation in the world economy as a whole.

The US to further expand its military presence in the Philippines

By Peter Symonds, 14 April 2016

As US-China tensions mount, Defence Secretary Carter signalled Washington’s intention to seek access to more Philippine military bases.

US defence secretary’s trip to Asia sets stage for new provocations against China

By Peter Symonds, 13 April 2016

Carter arrives in the Philippines to send a message to Beijing that the South China Sea is “a core American strategic interest.”

Australia’s prime minister to make state visit to China

By James Cogan, 13 April 2016

Despite the hype about exciting economic opportunities in China, Turnbull faces fraught issues on trade and Australia’s involvement in the US military buildup in Asia.

CSIS report argues for strong US-Japan-Australia alliance against China

By Peter Symonds, 9 April 2016

The Washington think tank’s proposed “federated defence” is nothing but a system of military alliances to prepare for war with China—akin to the alliances that preceded the previous two world wars.

US provocations against China threaten world war

By Andre Damon, 8 April 2016

The United States has sharply escalated its standoff with China, leading the New York Times to conclude that a “confrontation seems increasingly likely.”

US navy prepares third provocation in South China Sea

By Peter Symonds, 5 April 2016

Amid large US-Philippine war games, the Pentagon is preparing a new “freedom of navigation” operation to challenge China’s maritime claims.

Obama’s nuclear summit underscores danger of war

By Peter Symonds, 2 April 2016

The aim of US “non-proliferation” policy is not to rid the world of nuclear bombs but to ensure the US retains its nuclear dominance over any potential rival.

Australia: Socialist Alternative and the US “pivot to Asia”

By Oscar Grenfell, 25 March 2016

Socialist Alternative’s response to the Defense White Paper is aimed at obscuring Australia’s central role in the US drive to war against China.

Indonesia accuses China of encroaching on its territory

By John Roberts and Peter Symonds, 23 March 2016

Last weekend’s incident involving Chinese and Indonesian vessels is a sign of the acute tensions being generated by Washington’s intervention in South China Sea disputes.

US accelerating military encirclement of China

By Peter Symonds, 22 March 2016

Beijing responded to the implementation of the US-Philippines basing agreement by warning that Washington was turning Asia into “a new Middle East.”

US Air Force to boost presence in northern Australian bases

By Peter Symonds, 9 March 2016

Citing Chinese “militarisation” of the South China Sea, the US Pacific Air Forces commander insisted that the US had to maintain “a credible combat power” in Asia.

Australian government wracked by rifts over US military demands and austerity

By Mike Head, 9 March 2016

Sharp divisions within the political establishment lie behind recriminations within the Turnbull government.

US sends aircraft carrier to challenge China in South China Sea

By Peter Symonds, 5 March 2016

The dispatch of a US carrier strike group is part of a wave of provocations over China’s alleged militarisation of the South China Sea.

Australian Greens cover up Defence White Paper plans for war on China

By Mike Head, 3 March 2016

The Greens, who once postured as an anti-war party, have sent another signal of their readiness to support the US-led military build-up against China.

Ex-Australian PM calls for “freedom of navigation” challenge to China

By Peter Symonds, 2 March 2016

Abbott’s comments are part of growing demands for the Australian government to mount a military intrusion into Chinese-claimed territory in the South China Sea.

The Australian Defence White Paper and the drive to war

By James Cogan, 1 March 2016

The militarist agenda spelled out in the White Paper is incompatible with the democratic and social rights of the working class.

US fires ICBMs amid war threats against Russia

By Bill Van Auken, 27 February 2016

The Pentagon described the unusual launching of two unarmed missiles in the space of a week as a “signal” that Washington is ready for nuclear war.

Pentagon inflates “China threat” to justify massive build-up in Asia

By Peter Symonds, 27 February 2016

The only conclusion that can be drawn is that advanced preparations are being made for war with China.

US and the Philippines move rapidly to implement military deal

By Dante Pastrana, 26 February 2016

The Enhanced Defense Cooperative Agreement paves the way for a major US military build-up in the Philippines that will greatly heighten tensions with China.

Australian media use US admiral’s comments to push for confrontation with China

By James Cogan, 24 February 2016

The aim was to lend an air of urgency to a decision by the Australian government to order a military response to alleged Chinese “expansionism” in the South China Sea.

BAYAN mounts second bogus challenge to US basing deal

By Joseph Santolan, 24 February 2016

The Philippine Maoists are speaking for the most reactionary layers of the Philippine bourgeoisie, who are spearheading the US war drive against China, but want firm guarantees of US support if a conflict breaks out.

Labor Party steps up demands for Australia to “stand up” to China

By James Cogan, 20 February 2016

Labor is serving as the catspaw of the US military establishment and seeking to dramatically ratchet up military tensions with Beijing.

Rhetoric escalates over Chinese missile installation in Paracel Islands

By James Cogan, 19 February 2016

The entire issue has been inflated and exaggerated for definite political and diplomatic purposes.

US condemns Chinese missiles in the South China Sea

By Peter Symonds, 18 February 2016

Much of the US and international media coverage of the Chinese missile revelations is exaggerated and deliberately misleading.

Australian foreign minister echoes US demands against China

By James Cogan, 18 February 2016

Bishop’s visit to Japan and China underscored Australia’s role as a key partner of Washington’s aggressive “pivot to Asia.”

US push on South China Sea falls short at ASEAN summit

By Peter Symonds, 17 February 2016

Obama’s failure to secure a tough statement against Beijing will not stop the provocative US freedom of navigation operations challenging Chinese maritime claims.

The Pentagon’s CSIS report and Australia’s role in the escalating war drive against China

By the Socialist Equality Party (Australia), 3 February 2016

Washington’s entire anti-China strategy has received the unconditional backing of successive governments in Canberra.

Pressure mounts on Australian government to challenge China in South China Sea

By Peter Symonds, 2 February 2016

“Freedom of navigation” is the threadbare pretext used to disguise US-led preparations for war with China.

US navy carries out provocative operation in South China Sea

By Peter Symonds, 1 February 2016

Washington’s actions are deliberately confrontational and reckless, raising the danger of a military clash with China.

Australia “central” to US plans for war with China

By James Cogan, 26 January 2016

The CSIS report demands a build-up of the Australia military, as well as US bases across the north of the continent.

US think tank outlines master plan for war with China

By Peter Symonds, 26 January 2016

The CSIS report represents the voice of the vast American military establishment, which regards China as the chief threat to untrammelled US strategic dominance in Asia.

CSIS report: A blueprint for US war with China

By Peter Symonds, 25 January 2016

The study is a master plan for an accelerating arms race in Asia in preparation for a conflict that would draw in the entire region and the world.

Australian prime minister visits US military commander in Hawaii

By Mike Head, 23 January 2016

Over the past year, the admiral has played a vocal role in inflaming tensions with China, particularly over its territorial claims in the South China Sea.

Japan heightens its profile in the South China Sea

By Peter Symonds, 22 January 2016

Japan, like the US, is exploiting the tensions in the disputed waters to advance its own economic and strategic interests in South East Asia.

Labor Party in Australia demands “action” against China

By James Cogan, 21 January 2016

Shadow defence spokesman Stephen Conroy’s column underscores the Labor Party’s role as the most fervent supporter of the US-Australia alliance.

Condemnations of Chinese flight in South China Sea

By Peter Symonds, 5 January 2016

Washington’s calls for restraint are in marked contrast to its escalating provocations to challenge Chinese claims in the disputed waters.

Vietnam accelerates military build-up, plans for war

By John Braddock, 5 January 2016

Vietnam is preparing to enter an imperialist war as an accomplice of the United States against China.

Indonesian foreign policy tilts towards the US and its allies

By John Roberts, 31 December 2015

Amid rising tensions in the South China Sea, Indonesia has adopted a tougher approach to China, while at the same time seeking to avoid open confrontation.

Australia, Japan “strongly support” US, amid rising tensions with China

By Peter Symonds, 19 December 2015

As Japanese and Australian leaders met in Tokyo, an American paper reported a US military intrusion into Chinese-claimed air space in the South China Sea.

What is the BBC doing in the South China Sea?

By Peter Symonds, 16 December 2015

A BBC news crew deliberately intruded inside the 12-nautical-mile territorial limit around a Chinese-controlled reef to provoke a reaction in an already tense situation.

US to base spy planes in Singapore

By Peter Symonds, 9 December 2015

The basing of P8 Poseidon surveillance aircraft in Singapore foreshadows further provocative US activities against China in the South China Sea.

US pressures Australian government to toe the line on China

By Peter Symonds, 8 December 2015

Washington’s misgivings over Turnbull have been heightened by the lease of Darwin port to a Chinese company and his failure to agree to joint military challenges to Chinese claims in the South China Sea.

Syria and the South China Sea: Two flashpoints for world war

By Peter Symonds, 27 November 2015

US strategists have long regarded the Eurasian landmass as the key to world domination and view China and Russia as the chief obstacles to American ambitions.

Australian state government rejects Chinese bid for electricity company

By Oscar Grenfell, 27 November 2015

State Grid’s offer was turned down after a hysterical campaign presenting it as a threat to “national security.”

US, China trade diplomatic blows over South China Sea

By Peter Symonds, 23 November 2015

Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin condemned the intrusion of a US navy destroyer within the 12-mile limit of its islands as a “political provocation.”

Obama demands China halt South China Sea activities

By Mike Head, 19 November 2015

In Manila for the APEC summit, Obama condemned China specifically, further escalating the confrontation over the South China Sea.

US flies nuclear-capable bombers close to Chinese islets

By Peter Symonds, 14 November 2015

Washington’s latest military provocation in the South China Sea takes place on the eve of international summits in Manila and Kuala Lumpur.

Washington’s big lie of “peace and stability” in Asia

By Peter Symonds, 10 November 2015

“Stability,” in Washington’s lexicon, is synonymous with American dominance, which it has always pursued through ruthless and violent means.

Australian workers and youth denounce preparations for war against China

By our reporters, 7 November 2015

Australia’s Turnbull government last week gave its immediate support for US naval provocations against China in the South China Sea.

Brisbane residents startled by low altitude military flight

By Mike Head, 7 November 2015

The unannounced fly-over by a large Globemaster aircraft displayed utter contempt for the residents and alarmed many people, both physically and politically.

US defense secretary steps up threats against China

By Nick Beams, 6 November 2015

Ashton Carter’s appearance on the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt is a further intensification of the US military push against China.

Washington prepares for World War III

By Patrick Martin, 5 November 2015

Three congressional hearings Tuesday discussed the preparations of the US military for a Third World War against China, Russia or both.

ASEAN defence summit divided over South China Sea dispute

By Nick Beams, 5 November 2015

Despite heavy lobbying, the US did not obtain overt backing for its actions in the South China Sea from a meeting of South East Asian defence ministers

US ramps up pressure on Beijing over South China Sea

By Peter Symonds, 4 November 2015

The violation of Chinese maritime claims has nothing to do with upholding international law but is part of Washington’s “pivot to Asia” aimed at subordinating China to US interests.

French President Hollande tours Asia as divisions mount between US and Europe over China

By Alex Lantier and Kumaran Ira, 4 November 2015

Hollande’s was the latest in a series of high-level state visits highlighting Europe’s ever-closer relations with China.

Australia and China conduct joint naval exercises

By Peter Symonds, 3 November 2015

The joint operation in no way eases the tensions heightened by the US naval intrusion into Chinese-claimed territory in the South China Sea last week.

UN Tribunal to adjudicate South China Sea legal dispute

By Joseph Santolan, 31 October 2015

The tribunal’s ruling is a blow to China and strengthens the propaganda of Washington, which will use it to provide a legal fig leaf to escalate its war-mongering.

Chinese military warns against continued US operations in South China Sea

By Nick Beams, 30 October 2015

Pressure is set to intensify on Australia to take a direct part in the US naval operations.

US military cabal organised South China Sea provocation

By Nick Beams, 29 October 2015

The US naval operation was the outcome of months of planning by the Pentagon, accompanied by a build-up of pressure on the Obama administration to authorise it.

Washington’s South China Sea provocation and the spectre of World War III

By Peter Symonds, 28 October 2015

The entry of the guided missile destroyer USS Lassen into Chinese-claimed waters raises the danger of a military confrontation between two nuclear-armed powers.

Tensions soar internationally following US deployment in South China Sea

By James Cogan, 28 October 2015

The reckless calculation in Washington is that the Chinese regime’s diplomatic and military response to its provocative actions are nothing more than rhetoric.

US launches South China Sea military provocation against China

By Nick Beams, 27 October 2015

The brazen and aggressive character of the operation is underscored by the fact that it has been undertaken in the total absence of military activity against the US by China.

Two Chinese diplomats killed in the Philippines

By Joseph Santolan, 23 October 2015

While many details are still unknown, the fatal shooting occurs amid explosive tensions between China and the Philippines provoked by Washington.

UK woos China during Xi visit

By Robert Stevens, 21 October 2015

The key announcement from the Chinese President’s visit is that London has been chosen as the first overseas financial centre for a sovereign debt market in Chinese renminbi.

US, Australia talks portend military provocation against China

By James Cogan, 15 October 2015

For the first time, the Ausmin communiqué has explicitly named Chinese activity as the cause of “strong concerns.”

US navy planning provocative “patrols” in South China Sea

By Nick Beams, 14 October 2015

The apparent US decision to go ahead with “patrols” in the South China Sea follows a steady drumbeat from within military circles.

Financial Times reports US plans to send warships into waters claimed by China

By our reporter, 9 October 2015

Any action by the US Navy to breach the 12-mile exclusion zone around Chinese claimed islands in the South China Sea would threaten a head-on military confrontation.

US Pacific Fleet commander threatens China over South China Sea

By Peter Symonds, 7 October 2015

The US military is preparing to send warships and aircraft within the 12-mile territorial limit around Chinese-administration islets, deliberately risking an armed clash.

US uses ASEAN summit to escalate confrontation with Beijing

By Mike Head, 6 August 2015

Washington’s provocative accusations against China over the South China Sea heighten the danger of war between the two nuclear-armed powers, whether by deliberate provocation or miscalculation.

Australian government announces $89 billion naval expansion

By Peter Symonds, 5 August 2015

The naval build-up is an integral part of the military preparations by the US and its allies throughout Asia for war against China.

Japanese government ramps up tensions with China

By Peter Symonds, 23 July 2015

By demanding a halt to China’s oil-and-gas exploration platforms in the East China Sea, Tokyo is adding another potential flashpoint for conflict with Beijing.

Australian Greens senator talks of war with China

By James Cogan, 15 July 2015

Scott Ludlam epitomises the cynical manner in which a layer of the Greens occasionally pose as “left” and “anti-war.”

Washington’s hypocritical denunciations of Chinese “land reclamation” in the South China Sea

By Oscar Grenfell, 14 July 2015

The outposts of Vietnam and other claimants in the region cover a far broader expanse than those of China.

Report urges closer US-Australian military collaboration against China

By Peter Symonds, 14 July 2015

The joint US-Australian think tank report documents the extent to which Australia has already become a major base of operations for the US military in Asia.

Obama welcomes Vietnam’s Communist Party head

By Peter Symonds, 10 July 2015

Trong’s very presence in the White House sends a strong message regarding Hanoi’s closer ties to Washington, directed against Beijing.

US lawyers argue Manila’s case against China in The Hague

By Joseph Santolan, 9 July 2015

The legal case, which aims to invalidate China’s territorial claim to the South China Sea, is part of Washington’s campaign against Beijing.

Japan joins US-Australian rehearsal for conflict with China

By James Cogan, 7 July 2015

For the first time, Japanese forces will participate in the biennial joint Australian and US “Talisman Sabre” exercise.

Ongoing tensions in South China Sea as Chinese-led investment bank formally launched

By Oliver Campbell, 2 July 2015

The establishment of the bank, a blow to US plans for hegemony in the Asia-Pacific, was accompanied by a ratcheting up of Washington’s campaign against China.

Obama administration uses bilateral talks to ramp up pressure on China

By Oliver Campbell, 27 June 2015

The talks took place amid an escalation of Washington’s diplomatic, military and economic campaign against China.

US Senate vote clears path for anti-China trade bill

By Patrick Martin, 24 June 2015

The vote to revive the “fast-track” bill, only a week after its defeat in the House, demonstrates the decisive power of big business and the military-intelligence establishment.