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Japan's aircraft carrier jitters unfounded

By Li Donghang (PLA Daily)

09:55, August 05, 2011

After China's Ministry of National Defense announced on July 27 that China's navy is transforming an obsolete aircraft carrier imported from abroad into an experimental and training platform, international media have devoted particular attention to the news, including "China Threat" rhetoric, notably the remarks made by several senior Japanese officials.

According to a report by Japan's NHK television station on July 28, Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said at a press conference on the same day in response to China's confirmation of an aircraft carrier plan, "The development of China's military strength is not only a matter of concern for Japan but for the international community."

He added, "We hope that China will boost its military transparency by properly disclosing information such as the exact purpose of possessing an aircraft carrier, its construction and deployment plans."

One day later, Japanese Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa also said that there is "generally no transparency" in China's aircraft carrier plan, "it is totally unclear what China will use its aircraft carriers to do," and he said it is likely to lead to regional tensions.

Facts will tell whether China's strategic orientation is clear, transparent

Chinese leaders have reiterated on different occasions at home and abroad over the past three decades that China conforms to the path of peaceful development and seeks peaceful coexistence and common prosperity with all countries in the world. These are not empty words but a specific strategy in practice.

Although China has not completed national reunification, it follows the trend of the times by adhering to the principle of "peaceful reunification, and one country, two systems," deepening peaceful cross-strait relations, enhancing cross-strait cooperation and exchanges and promoting the well-being of the people in mainland China and Taiwan.

Although part of its maritime rights and interests is being damaged, China follows the trend of the times by adhering to the principle of "shelving disputes and pursuing joint development," taking regional stability into full consideration and making unremitting efforts to reduce the possibility of disputed waters becoming flashpoints. The Chinese government emphasized at the start of the aircraft carrier project that China will neither change its defensive national policy because of powerful weapons, nor use the aircraft carrier as a tool of imperialism.

As a developing country that used to be severely bullied by imperialist powers, China has embarked on the road of national rejuvenation and will not fall into the track of military expansion of previous powers. Even after it becomes a world power, it will not bully the weak or seek hegemony.

Why are certain Japanese officials so worried?

As a country that takes overseas trades as its economic base, Japan clearly knows the significance of safeguarding its maritime rights and interests and guaranteeing its maritime safety, especially the safety of its seaways. Therefore, it has built the 13,000-ton Ohsumi ship, the 18,000-ton Hyuga ship and the Ise as well as several other large-scale warships that can carry combat aircraft.

However, Japan calls these "quasi-carriers," "large-scale transport ships" or "helicopter destroyers." The reason why Japan is so secretive is because Japan has never profoundly reflected its history of launching villainous aggressive war, and, furthermore, is always trying to break the limitations of "Constitution of Peace" and carry out rearmament.

Some Japanese politicians know that their rearmament plan will be severely criticized by international communities, and therefore they jumped out quickly and started to criticize China in order to find an excuse for their plan. They know that China is facing a complex situation of maritime safety and a lot of maritime territories of China are still occupied by foreign countries, including Japan.

They knew China is the largest foreign-trade country of the world and how crucial the safety of China's seaways and maritime strategic materials are. They also know China will inevitably need the aircraft carrier as a platform to fulfill its responsibility of maintaining the regional stability and world peace.

However, they still threw out the argument that China's aircraft development plan is not clear and will be a threat in order to divert the attention of international communities so that they can carry out their own plan.

Another reason for their argument is that some Japanese politicians, who hold prejudice against China, do not want to see a strong China. They take China's aircraft development plan as a kind of new fuel and add it in the flame of the "China Threat Theory" to create confrontations between China and its neighbors and even between China and the United States in the regions of East Asia and Western Pacific so that they can profit from the confrontations.

The Japanese strategy of hindering China's development by confusing public opinion and smearing China's image is not rare in previous strategic competition among great powers, though the strategy itself has been repeatedly proven ineffective. The great U.S. President Abraham Lincoln once said, "you can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time." The Japanese officials must have heard this famous quote. It is hoped that they can really understand it and make right decisions.

Email|Print|Comments(Editor:张洪宇)

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  1. Name

JK at 2011-08-11125.237.102.*
Japan is the American Stooge in the East as Israel is the American Lackey in the Middle East !
arkhangelsk at 2011-08-09210.177.156.*
>Even after it becomes a world power, it will not bully the weak or seek hegemony.Can you explain Vietnam to me then? Or the barely disguised attempt to use rare-Earth deposits to bully Japan into releasing a terrorist (let's set aside the territorial issue for now, that fisherman's ramming actions were piratical at best and terrorist at worst, completely against the normal rules of seamanship.)>The reason why Japan is so secretive is because Japan has never profoundly reflected its history of launching villainous aggressive warActually, it is the inverse. That many people reflect on the history of war has caused a state where even a defensive helicopter carrier has to be called an escort ship (in Japanese, it isn't even a destroyer, and while a Western source may be excused, a Chinese or Korean source should know this little linguistic quirk).>always trying to break the limitations of "Constitution of Peace" and carry out rearmament. Quite frankly, while there are always Nationalists everywhere, the primary impetus to rearmament is:1) Threats.2) The United States trying to meet those threats.>They know that China is facing a complex situation of maritime safety and a lot of maritime territories of China are still occupied by foreign countries, including Japan. Even counting the Diaoyus as Chinese, those meaningless islands can hardly be called "a lot".>They also know China will inevitably need the aircraft carrier as a platform to fulfill its responsibility of maintaining the regional stability and world peace. Interesting. Now please explain why China does not think that Japan might " inevitably need the Helicopter-Carrying Escort Ships as a platform to fulfill its responsibility of maintaining the regional stability and world peace?"
aan at 2011-08-05114.59.133.*
America and its allies have been proven that cause poverty and chaos , in many aspects of life around the world.
  

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