Senior Chinese Military Officer Calls For Attacks On US Ships In The South China Sea

news

The South China Sea is a powder keg, and one senior Chinese military officer seems interested in lighting the fuse even further.


Dai Xu, a People's Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) senior colonel and president of the Institute of Marine Safety and Cooperation, suggested last weekend that the Chinese navy use force to counter US freedom-of-navigation operations in the South China Sea, Taiwan News reported Sunday. He spoke at a conference hosted by the nationalist, state-backed Chinese tabloid Global Times.

"If the U.S. warships break into Chinese waters again, I suggest that two warships should be sent: one to stop it, and another one to ram it," he said. "In our territorial waters, we won't allow U.S. warships to create [a] disturbance."

Dai, famous for his hawkish rhetoric, argued that U.S. Navy freedom-of-navigation operations, or FONOPS, are provocations aimed at undermining China's sovereignty rather than an actual attempt to ensure freedom of navigation in international waters. The U.S. Navy regularly sails destroyers and cruisers past Chinese-occupied territories in the South China Sea, while U.S. Air Force bombers tear past on routine overflights that often ruffle Beijing's feathers.

The most recent FONOP occurred in late November when the U.S. Navy sent the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville to challenge Chinese claims near the Paracel Islands.

In this May 24, 2014 photo, China's Harbin (112) guided missile destroyer, left, and DDG-139 Ningbo Sovremenny class Type-956EM destroyer, right, take part in a week-long China-Russia "Joint Sea-2014" navy exercise at the East China Sea off Shanghai, ChinaAssociated Press photo

The Global Times is known for its often provocative articles, intentionally designed to appeal to an alternative audience and differ from the more rigid state media outlets like Xinhua. Dai's rhetoric at the conference is consistent with that trend, as he seemed to welcome an increase in tension, suggesting that confrontation in the South China Sea could create an opportunity for mainland China to retake Taiwan.

"It would boost the speed of our unification of Taiwan," he told the conference. "Let's just be prepared and wait. Once a strategic opportunity emerges, we should be ready to take over Taiwan."

Dai's comments about the use of force in the South China Sea comes on the heels of a near-miss incident that occurred in September when a Chinese Luyang-class destroyer confronted the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Decatur during a FONOP in the Spratly Islands.

During the "unsafe" incident, the Chinese vessel reportedly made preparations to ram the American warship, forcing it off course. The showdown was characterized by one foreign policy expert as "the PLAN's most direct and dangerous attempt to interfere with lawful US Navy navigation in the South China Sea to date."

Read more from Business Insider:

WATCH NEXT:

(Glow Images via Associated Press)

Editor's Note: This article by Amy Bushatz originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

A massive billing glitch in Tricare's East region, managed by Humana, on Thursday slammed about 25,000 beneficiaries with premium charges 100 times more than they owe monthly for their coverage.

Read More Show Less
A UH-60 Black Hawk departs from The Rock while conducting Medevac 101 training with members of the 386th Expeditionary Medical Group, Feb. 16, 2019. (U.S. Air Force Photo/Tech. Sgt. Robert Cloys)

A Minnesota Army National Guard UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter with three Guardsmen aboard crashed south of St. Cloud on Thursday, said National Guard spokeswoman Army Master Sgt. Blair Heusdens.

At this time, the National Guard is not releasing any information about the status of the three people aboard the helicopter, Heusdens told Task & Purpose on Thursday.

Read More Show Less
Members of the National Socialist Movement, one of the largest neo-Nazi groups in the US, hold a swastika burning after a rally on April 21, 2018 in Draketown, Georgia. (Getty Images/Spencer Platt)

Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Business Insider.

Former Canadian Army Reserve Master Cpl. Patrik Mathews, 26, was first identified as a member of The Base by Winnipeg Free Press reporter Ryan Thorpe.

Days after Thorpe's report was published, Mathews went missing and was discharged from the military for his alleged ties to the group. His car was found about 10 miles from the U.S. border soon thereafter, and police found a cache of weapons when they raided his home.

Vice reporters Ben Makuch, Mack Lamoureux, and Zachary Kamel, citing confidential sources, reported on Thursday that Mathews had been illegally smuggled across the border and is being hidden by members of The Base, which has operated in encrypted chatrooms as a largely online organization.

Read More Show Less

The Pentagon's latest attempt to twist itself in knots to deny that it is considering sending up to 14,000 troops to the Middle East has a big caveat.

Pentagon spokeswoman Alyssa Farah said there are no plans to send that many troops to the region "at this time."

Farah's statement does not rule out the possibility that the Defense Department could initially announce a smaller deployment to the region and subsequently announce that more troops are headed downrange.

Read More Show Less

The Navy could send a second aircraft carrier to the Middle East if President Donald Trump orders a surge of forces to the region, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Gilday said on Thursday.

Gordon Lubold and Nancy Youssef of the Wall Street Journal first reported the United States is considering sending up to 14,000 troops to the Middle East to deter Iran from attacking U.S. forces and regional allies. The surge forces could include several ships.

Read More Show Less