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Wednesday, July 19, 2017

China is preparing for a “people’s war”

China scares the world with its military rhetoric. Not so long ago the head of the defense Ministry of the country Chang Wanquan called on his compatriots to prepare for “Maritime people’s war”, referring to the issue with the Islands in the South China sea, which along with China is disputed by the Philippines, Vietnam, Taiwan, Brunei and Malaysia. More recently, the court of arbitration in the Hague decided that Beijing has no priority rights to these water areas, which caused the indignation of the Chinese authorities.

photo: ru.wikipedia.org

While China enhances its military activity, including in the South China sea. In September, Beijing plans to hold exercises with Russia.

A lawsuit was filed by the Philippines. As for China, President XI Jinping, Islands in the South China sea are its integral part since ancient times. The US and its partners have accused China trying to capture the power of Islands.

How serious is the conflict of China and its neighbors and whether it can escalate into a global confrontation, “MK” told the head of the School of Oriental studies of the HSE Alexey Maslov.

— Statement of the Ministry of defense of China are made for domestic consumption, because the decision of the Hague court is the first serious defeat of China in the international arena regarding territorial conflicts, — said the expert. — Never before has Beijing such resistance has not received: now it is important to show that he will not back down from its claims.

The second point. China ready to fight, but hates all the stability of its economy is based today on increasing volume of trade and on the safety of transport routes. Any war in this region will not only bring down the trade with nearby countries, but will change completely the character of the foreign policy of Beijing, which has always acted as peace uncle before the country youths who are at war with them.

States that joined the conflict, Thailand, the Philippines, partially Burma, Vietnam, and on the other hand China’s trading partners, who are developing a free trade zone. Rather, it should be viewed not as a confrontation of China with these countries, and as the confrontation between China and the United States. Beijing wants to show that he is military power. If a conflict breaks out, China to conduct naval warfare is strong.

photo: Ivan Skryplev

We must note that China itself called it a “people’s war”. This concept, which has advanced even Mao Zedong: when not fighting the army, and the militia (which in China more than the army) and the self-defense forces. This is an attempt in political terms, translate it into a conflict of Nations, not countries. Last time the slogan “people’s war” was nominated in 1960-1970s. Then they worked. Now for China it is important to mobilize the nation, given the drop in the economy. Why Beijing needs to show that he wants to move to a new level.

Not coincidentally, China is now carefully studying the Russian operation in Crimea…

— That is the Russian experience played a role?

— Of course. Russian experience has shown that in spite of all political decisions, the requirements of Western countries and even international organizations, the state can conduct its policies. China cannot afford to do everything dramatically, as Russia, although there are voices: “And why not? If Russia was able, while in more difficult economic situation, why is China being so hesitant?” There is pressure from below. I don’t think the Chinese will do it, although China believes that this is his island and no annexation can not be here. But now, unfortunately, the situation is approaching pre-war. Given the fact that China has developed its asiansexy fleet and now pulls a second aircraft carrier, is a serious threat.

— What scale can be an armed conflict?

Local. About any Third world war. In fact, it is this: clashes with Chinese ships the coast guard ships of neighboring countries. First of all, the Philippines and Thailand. This will lead to threatening statements, perhaps, the UN, and other organizations, but then a very important role of the United States. If they decide to intervene and bring to your fleet, then breaks out in East Asia conflict. If the United States will not nominate a fleet, and limited threat of sanctions, it would be a protracted conflict without a serious military component. This was already the case when the students were in Tiananmen square in 1989, and the United States announced sanctions. Many of them are even now, but they had absolutely no effect on China, because the US was so interested in China as trading partner that all these measures were a virtual dimension. Now may be the same story.

— Russia will be able to remain neutral or will have to intervene?

— China tries to internationalize the conflict, to force a number of countries, including Russia, to make direct statements about the belonging of these territories to China. Russia has managed wisely to get away from such statements and not to waste your time on hints that if we support China in this issue, he will support us in island dispute with Japan. It is necessary to understand that Moscow has a chance to waste: we support China — at least, morally and politically — in his conflict, if he breaks out, and he, in turn, increases investment in Russia. But China is directly linked to loves as he loves to create the illusion that these things can be linked. I believe that the only way out for Russia is to preserve absolute neutrality, just as Beijing acted against the Ukrainian and Crimean issues. He expressed the need for a diplomatic solution to the conflict, but in the forehead with his position on the Crimea and has not expressed.

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