No, China Doesn’t Want Confrontation in the South China Sea
It’s been said that groupthink is a bad thing, that creative tension is a good thing and that appointing a “devil’s advocate” represents the best way to counteract the former while generating the latter. With any luck the give-and-take of debate yields better insights into ambient circumstances and how to manage them. To assure there is some... Read more
How Defensible Are China’s Island Bases?
China has built some islands in the South China Sea. Can it protect them? During World War II Japan found that control of islands offered some strategic advantages, but not enough to force the United States to reduce each island individually. Moreover, over time the islands became a strategic... Read more
China’s Island Missiles Can Effectively Shut Out the U.S. Air Force
China has deployed the powerful HQ-9 air and missile defense system to Woody Island — also known as Yongxing — in the Parcel archipelago, marking a new level of escalation in Beijing’s quest to control the South China Sea. The disputed island — which has been inhabited by about... Read more
The Forces Awakening Against an Antagonistic China
Few can deny that China has had a particularly challenging year. In an effort to augment its sovereignty claims over what it considers as its national “blue soil,” China has inadvertently encouraged a growing number of nations to coalesce against it. One could argue that China has overplayed its hand,... Read more
China Builds Up Its Fleet of Ships That Make Artificial Islands
Venturing ever further from the rivers and coasts that it helped develop in the first three decades of China’s post-Mao reforms, China’s burgeoning dredging fleet has not only excavated new land in the South China Sea, but has also given China a big new shovel to break ground on... Read more

Andrew Erickson

Associate professor at the U.S. Naval War College and an associate in research at Harvard University’s Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies.

Kevin Bond

Research intern at the China Maritime Studies Institute at the Naval War College.

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