People's Daily: Japan's Strategic Clamor Hides Ulterior Motive

China Military Online
Zhang Tao

BEIJING, Sept. 18 (ChinaMil) -- The Japanese defense minister Tomomi Inada recently gave a speech in Washington in which she accused China of being "rule bending" in the East China Sea and South China Sea issues.

She even proclaimed that Japan will step up its interference in the South China Sea by a range of means including joint patrols and exercises with the US, military drills with other countries in the region and helping countries along the South China Sea in capability building.

Such remarks by a high-ranking Japanese official were calling black white and aimed to instigate tension and viciously disrupt regional stability.

When speaking of Japan, nobody ever intentionally emphasizes that it isn't a big country, but they do emphasize that it is a big country economically.

The Japanese were concerned about this and set the goal in the early 1990s of becoming a big country politically, but years later they realized that they really "have nothing much to say" on the international stage.

As the US launched the Asia Pacific Rebalancing Strategy, Japan's dream of becoming a political and military big country was ignited again.

When future historians comment on this period of history, they are sure to remember the chain effects of America's adjustment of its Asia Pacific Strategy, which is revitalizing the dream for political and military big country of Japan, the country that still carries the atrocities it committed in WWII, and giving it the green light to challenge the post-WWII international order.

The series of so-called "China Threats" enumerated by Tomomi Inada cannot stand the slightest scrutiny.

It is known to all that the Diaoyu Dao and its surrounding islands have been China's inherent territory since ancient times, which is endorsed by a spate of documents with international authority.

It is only natural for China to resolutely defend its territorial sovereignty, which is nothing like the "rule breaking" claimed by Tomomi Inada no matter which international rule is applied.

As to "breaking the status quo" in the East China Sea, it is ridiculous that Japan found the confidence to make that accusation. The whole world knows that it is no other than Japan that took the first step to "break the status quo" on the issue of Diaoyu Dao in recent years.

Regarding the South China Sea issue, the so-called arbitration unilaterally initiated by the Philippines was illegal and void from the very beginning because it seriously violated international laws and the usual practice of international arbitration.

China's decision to not accept or participate in the arbitration proceedings and not accept or recognize the arbitration award was truly defending the international rule of law. Which international law says that the award issued by a questionable arbitral tribunal that has nothing to do with the UN has legal force?

This political farce has subsided, but Japan, instead of feeling ashamed for the role it played in that farce, began to make jarring noises again in the international stage.

At the East Asia Summit recently held in Vientiane, even American media like the Wall Street Journal noticed that ASEAN countries' mild attitude posed a sharp contrast to that of certain out-of-the-region country.

ASEAN countries have realized that it is necessary to find a feasible solution to manage disputes instead of unnecessarily adding fuel to flame, then what is Japan trying to do? Does it have the evil impulse again to dominate the security situation in Asia and control the relations among Asian countries?

Japan has a very bad track record in observing international laws. What face does it have to talk about "rule" and "rule of law" in the international community?

The Diaoyu Dao issue and attitude toward history both involve the foundation for the post-WWII international order, and important international documents such as the Potsdam Proclamation and the Cairo Declaration all made corresponding provisions.

However, more than 70 years after the WWII, Japan is still making trouble on relevant issues and even publicly contravenes international order and the rule of law. High-ranking Japanese officials have made remarks that doubted the Potsdam Proclamation, promoted the notion that "definition of aggression is unsettled" and denied the Nanjing Massacre and "Comfort Women". Are these reflections of "rule" and "rule of law"?

Japan is well aware of the history of South China Sea issue. It occupied the South China Sea islands during WWII, which China recovered according to international documents including the Potsdam Proclamation and the Cairo Declaration after Japan was defeated in the war.

If Japan, as it claimed, truly upholds "rule" and "rule of law", why does it turn a blind eye to the legal logic and historical facts?

Tomomi Inada's hype of "China Threat" may be cliché, but the military action plan for "interfering in the South China Sea" that she put forward has undoubtedly posed new risks to regional security and stability.

"Joint patrols and exercises with the US", "military drills with other countries in the region" and "helping countries in the South China Sea in capability building" - such an elaborate action plan fully demonstrates that Japan is not only adhering to the Cold War mindset, but also trying to sow the seed of discord.

After the new security bill was adopted, Japan is sending ever stronger signals that it wants to achieve military rise by making trouble.

Either regarding the power landscape in Asia Pacific today or the popular sentiment, Japan is biting more than it can chew in making strategic clamor, and its intention of benefiting from the hostility between different blocs is doomed to fail.

Which country would want to join Japan's "dream game" in the age of win-win cooperation? Even if Japan continues down this path by sucking up to certain big power, it seems quite doubtful that it would be able to pay the price.


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