One needs to have a basic understanding of the nature of the United States and its global strategy in order to comprehend its recent provocations in the Yellow Sea and the South China Sea. The 2010 US defense report said first and foremost the U.S. is a nation at war.
From a historical perspective, the U.S. has continuously found enemies and waged wars. It has become part of its social formula. Without wars the US economy loses stimulus. Without enemies the U.S. cannot hold the will of the whole nation.
Its recent military drills in the Yellow Sea and announcement to intervene in the South China Sea affairs were efforts made to encircle China. It is attempting to build the "Asian NATO" with Japan, South Korea, Australia and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
China is becoming the world's wealth centre. The U.S. could benefit from China's economic development. For China, with its backward military force, development is the top priority. It has neither the intention nor the capacity to challenge the global hegemony of the U.S.
China is unlikely to take a tough line against the strategy of the U.S. China is bound to stand side by side with the U.S. in the international arena. It will not tolerate the U.S. closing in forever, though.
In order to prevent the U.S. from surrounding it, China needs to draw a clear bottom line. The U.S. is not allowed to coerce China to give in on matters concerning China's territory and maritime sovereignty, national solidarity and regional issues. And it is not allowed to jeopardize China's national interest by collaborating with neighboring countries.
China has never done anything with the enemies of the U.S. that would harm the country's security. The U.S. has no right to unscrupulously engage in activities that threaten China's security time and again. As a responsible power, China's priority is safeguarding its own dignity.
If the U.S. is adjusting its global strategic emphasis, China needs to reevaluate its strategy toward the U.S. China loves peace, but it will staunchly safeguard its national interests.
The author is Air Force Colonel and a military strategist.
(The post was first published in Chinese and translated by Zhang Ming'ai)