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2015-10-09

美國軍艦據報將駛入南海人工島海域○BBC(2015.10.08)


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北京主張島嶼設施非軍用,是一種外交轉圜設計,備而不用。
準此,DC當然可以玩「將計就計」!


已經從春天起,DC從學者、智庫、國務院;第七艦隊、太平洋艦隊、海軍部到國防部,不斷的升高層級,傳達相同的訊息。但5月傳過一次,無疾而終,102Foreign Policy也有過報導。逐漸的,不做也不成了。

據說美中有「非常徹底的溝通」,顯然是雙方歐習層峰面對面最徹底的交換。
幾天內就會實施,但還要歐巴馬批准。一旦實施,就表示極高的政治意涵。

但可能也是雷聲大。
那位Bryan Clark意見有問題,因為,這不是領海的無害通過。而是,因為只是礁岩,所以根本不是領海。但歐巴馬先前總是禁止海軍經過此地,相對於現在的轉變,實在有趣。但Bryan Clark是對的,假使美國根本不承認,為何又要指明12海里?從而,美國也有「領海的無害通過」。
美國此舉也可能是回敬9月解放軍海軍艦艇無害通過阿留申群島的美國領海,當時歐巴馬正在訪問附近。

有沒有人評估,假使南海起波瀾,對2016是何種影響?美國會否要求海自派一艘金剛見習?



美國軍艦據報將駛入南海人工島海域○BBC(2015.10.08)
英國和美國媒體報道說,美國軍艦將在兩周內駛入南海人工島12海里的水域,向中國發出強烈信號:美國不承認中國對該區域的領土主張。
英國的《金融時報》和美國的《海軍時報》分別報道了上述消息。

路透社援引中國外交部發言人華春瑩在周四的例行新聞會上表示,中國注意到這樣的報道,中美在南海問題上保持著「非常徹底的溝通」。

她說:「我相信,美方非常清楚中國的有關原則立場。我們希望美方能客觀,公正地看待目前南海的情況,並與中國一起,在維護南海地區和平與穩定方面真正發揮建設性的作用。」

白宮拒絕就潛在機密的海軍行動發表任何評論。美國國務院和五角大樓則沒有立即回應路透社請其就此做出評論的要求。

美國總統奧巴馬說,中國國家主席習近平9月下旬訪美時,他告訴習近平他對這些島嶼有「很大的擔憂」。

習近平說,這些島嶼並未軍事化,但華盛頓的分析人士和美國官員們說,軍事化早已經開始,唯一的問題是中國凖備在島上裝配多少軍事硬件設施

美軍太平洋地區司令哈里斯說,這些島嶼的開發,包括建設一個跑道令人「高度關注」,威脅了地區和平。

中國和東南亞多個國家對南海海域和島嶼有不同和區域相互重疊的主權聲稱。


Navy will challenge Chinese territorial claims in South China SeaNavy Times(2015.10.08)
The Navy is preparing to send a surface ship inside the 12-nautical-mile territorial limit China claims for its man-made island chain, an action that could take place within days but awaits final approval from the Obama administration, according to military officials who spoke to Navy Times.

Plans to send a warship through the contested space have been rumored since May, but three Pentagon officials who spoke to Navy Times on background to discuss future operations say Navy officials believe approval of the mission is imminent.

If approved, it would be the first time since 2012 that the U.S. Navy has directly challenged China's claims to the islands' territorial limits.

The land reclamation projects in the vicinity of the Spratly Islands have been the focus of increasing tensions between China and the United States along with its regional allies, including the Philippines, since reports of the land reclamation project began surfacing in 2013.  However, the U.S. and other nations have disputed the legitimacy of the islands built by China in what is viewed as an act of regional aggression.
                                                                                                                     
A spokesman for the National Security Council deferred questions regarding the Navy's plans to the Office of the Secretary of Defense, but drew attention to President Obama's remarks before the U.N. General Assembly Sept. 28, where he said the U.S. has "an interest in upholding the basic principles of freedom of navigation and the free flow of commerce, and in resolving disputes through international law, not the law of force."

OSD spokesman Cmdr. Bill Urban declined to comment on future operations, but referred to Defense Secretary Ash Carter's comments from Sept. 1, when he said that the "United States will fly, sail, and operate wherever international law allows, as we do all around the world."

The news of the pending maneuver comes just a day after Pacific Fleet boss Adm. Scott Swift told a maritime conference in Australia that "some nations" were behaving in a manner inconsistent with international law, a clear reference to the ongoing dispute with China.

"It's my sense that some nations view freedom of the seas as up for grabs, as something that can be taken down and redefined by domestic law or by reinterpreting international law," Swift said, according to a report by Reuters. "Some nations continue to impose superfluous warnings and restrictions on freedom of the seas in their exclusive economic zones and claim territorial water rights that are inconsistent with (the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea).  This trend is particularly egregious in contested waters."

In September, David Shear, assistant secretary of defense for Asia-Pacific security, told the Senate Armed Services Committee that the U.S. Navy hadn't steamed or flown within 12 nautical miles of the islands since 2012, which is before China's island construction project began in earnest.  Six nations with South China Sea coasts have competing claims to the territory being staked out by China's island building.

Later that day, House Armed Services Committee member Randy Forbes, R-Va. sent a letter signed by a bipartisan group of 29 House members calling the island-building project a threat to freedom of navigation and the peaceful international order in place since the end of World War II.

"In order to deter these actions and prevent further erosion of stability in the region, the United States must make clear that it is fully committed to maintaining freedom of navigation in the South China Sea," the letter read, calling for a "highly symbolic" passage of Navy ships and aircraft past the islands to send a message to China.

When reports that the U.S. was planning to challenge China's island claims surfaced in May, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson urged "relevant countries to refrain from taking risky and provocative action," according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.  Foreign Policy reported Oct. 2 that U.S. officials were planning a tougher stance in the South China Sea, including stepped up freedom of navigation patrols with ships and aircraft in the vicinity of the islands.

Bryan Clark, a retired submarine officer and analyst with the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, said that passage through territorial waters is a routine Navy operation typically used to build a legal case under international law for freedom of navigation in international waters, and right of innocent passage within territorial waters.

Innocent passage, the right of a state to pass through the territorial waters of another, is usually conducted with little fanfare.  But what makes the planned passage through China's newly claimed territorial waters significant is that the administration had previously prohibited the Navy from doing it in the Spratly Islands, Clark said.

"If you act like they have a legal 12-mile limit, even though the U.S. has said it doesn't recognize it, you are tacitly acknowledging those claims as legitimate," Clark said, adding that even if the claims were legitimate, the U.S. would have the right to pass through under the right of innocent passage.

The Chinese government claimed the same right when its navy's ships passed within 12 nautical miles of the U.S.-held Aleutian Islands off Alaska In September, after a joint exercise with the Russian military.

The U.S. and China's neighbors in the region are concerned that China is creating military installations on the islands.  In June, images surfaced of a nearly complete 10,000-foot-long airstrip on one of the islands, big enough to accommodate military aircraft.

China claims nearly all of the South China Sea, a position that has put it at loggerheads with its neighbors and prompted countries in the region, including erstwhile enemies such as Vietnam, to turn to the U.S. to offset the newly aggressive China.

China's actions have also prompted renewed military-to-military relations with the Philippines, more than two decades after the U.S. was kicked out of the country following a wave of anti-American sentiment inside the former U.S. colony.

An agreement signed last year that allows U.S. forces to use Philippine military facilities has been a signature accomplishment in the Obama administration's strategic pivot to Asia.


1 則留言:

  1. 美國參議院軍事委員會有關南海局勢的質詢。
    U.S. Military Strategy in Asia
    http://www.c-span.org/video/?328185-1/hearing-us-maritime-security-strategy-asiapacific

    美國國防部的 Freedom of Navigation (FON) Reports:
    http://policy.defense.gov/OUSDPOffices/FON.aspx

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