China Outlines New "Offensive" Military Strategy; Builds Lighthouses In Disputed Waters

Tyler Durden's picture

In what is becoming an intensely contentious situation, China is ramping up its naval ambitions amid fierce criticism from Washington. As we reported on Monday, the Beijing-backed Global Times has suggested that a war with the US may be in the cards if China isn’t left alone to complete its “construction work” in the contested Spratly archipelago. 

What Beijing calls “construction work”, Washington calls an unacceptable attempt to “redraw maritime boundaries” via the building of “sandcastles”, a reference to China’s land reclamation efforts atop the Fiery Cross Reef. Because Beijing claims most of the South China Sea, it says the construction of ports, cement plants, and airstrips atop the artificial islands its dredgers have built is no different in principle than the construction of roads on the mainland, a contention which the US and its regional allies view as absurd.

If there were any remaining questions about China’s maritime resolve, they were answered unequivocally on Tuesday with the release of the country’s 2015 defense white paper which indicates that Beijing is set to increase its “open seas protection” after countries with “ulterior motives” have busied themselves “meddling in South China Sea affairs.” Beijing also indicates that its air force will shift from a purely defensive strategy to an offensive stance, a nod to what we have described as the establishment of an effective no-fly zone over the Spratlys. Finally, China accuses Japan of "dodging" post-war norms by "overhauling its military." Here’s more from the report:

As the world economic and strategic center of gravity is shifting ever more rapidly to the Asia-Pacific region, the US carries on its "rebalancing" strategy and enhances its military presence and its military alliances in this region. Japan is sparing no effort to dodge the post-war mechanism, overhauling its military and security policies. Such development has caused grave concerns among other countries in the region. On the issues concerning China's territorial sovereignty and maritime rights and interests, some of its offshore neighbors take provocative actions and reinforce their military presence on China's reefs and islands that they have illegally occupied. Some external countries are also busy meddling in South China Sea affairs; a tiny few maintain constant close-in air and sea surveillance and reconnaissance against China. It is thus a long-standing task for China to safeguard its maritime rights and interests. Certain disputes over land territory are still smoldering…


In line with the strategic requirement of offshore waters defense and open seas protection, the PLA Navy (PLAN) will gradually shift its focus from "offshore waters defense" to the combination of "offshore waters defense" with "open seas protection," and build a combined, multi-functional and efficient marine combat force structure. The PLAN will enhance its capabilities for strategic deterrence and counterattack, maritime maneuvers, joint operations at sea, comprehensive defense and comprehensive support.


In line with the strategic requirement of building air-space capabilities and conducting offensive and defensive operations, the PLA Air Force (PLAAF) will endeavor to shift its focus from territorial air defense to both defense and offense, and build an air-space defense force structure that can meet the requirements of informationized operations. The PLAAF will boost its capabilities for strategic early warning, air strike, air and missile defense, information countermeasures, airborne operations, strategic projection and comprehensive support.

Full white paper

And more from Reuters:

Defence Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun said China's reclamation in the Spratlys was comparable with construction of homes and roads on the mainland.


"From the perspective of sovereignty, there is absolutely no difference," he told reporters.


Some countries with "ulterior motives" had unfairly characterized China's military presence and sensationalized the issue, he said. Surveillance in the region was increasingly common and China would continue to take "necessary measures" to respond.

Adding insult to injury for the US, China went on to broadcast a groundbreaking ceremony for two lighthouses Beijing is building on its new islands with a government spokesman indicating that no slowdown in development would be forthcoming because after all, those are some important shipping lanes.

China also hosted a groundbreaking ceremony for the building of two lighthouses in the South China Sea, broadcast on state television, defying calls from the United States and the Philippines for a freeze on such activity.


The construction was to help maritime search and rescue, disaster relief, environmental protection and navigational security, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said.


Wu Shicun, president of the government-affiliated National Institute for South China Sea Studies, said the lighthouses were among the first of planned civilian-use facilities in the region.


"The reefs are located near an important commercial shipping route, so there will be continued development to maintain the security of those shipping lanes," he said in an interview with Reuters.

Meanwhile, Japan will join the US and Australia in conducting war games in July in what Washington calls "unprecedented trilateral cooperation." 

Via Reuters again:

Japan will join a major U.S.-Australian military exercise for the first time in a sign of growing security links between the three countries as tensions fester over China's island building in the South China Sea.


The Japanese personnel will embed with U.S. forces while 500 New Zealand troops will join Australian contingents, according to the Australian Defence Force website.


Japanese Defense Minister Gen Nakatani rebuffed suggestions the exercises were aimed at China, telling Reuters that Japan simply wanted to improve military cooperation with the United States and Australia.


Security cooperation between Canberra and Tokyo has already flourished under Prime Ministers Tony Abbott and Shinzo Abe, with Japan seen as the frontrunner to win a contract to supply next generation submarines to the Australian navy. U.S. commanders have publicly supported such a tie-up.


U.S. Assistant Secretary of Defense David Shear highlighted Washington's goal of boosting cooperation between its allies in testimony to the U.S. Senate this month.


"To expand the reach of these alliances, we are embarking on unprecedented trilateral cooperation," he said.

As for China, they're "not worried":

China's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying, asked if Beijing was concerned the exercises appeared to be targeted toward China, said it was "not worried".

So while all of the above certainly seems to indicate that the world may be closer to a catastrophic global conflict than it's been since the Cold War, rest easy because as China will tell you, World War III isn't likely — at least not in the "forseeable future":

"In the foreseeable future, a world war is unlikely."

How comforting.

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Kirk2NCC1701's picture

The New Preemptive Defense is offensive to some.

Especially Globalist Neocons and Zi'Borgs.

Divine Wind's picture




Lets not forget that China's full press in laying claim to these islands, not to mention the body of water within which they are located, has come only after sizeable oil and gas deposits were confirmed in the Paracels, Senkakus, Spratlys and Scarborough Reef.

Further, China is now deploying more advanced ballistic missile submarines, the bases for which are located on Hainan Island as well as further up the coast of the mainland. As they begin to stretch their legs in this regard, the last thing they want are U.S. and western allies freely moving about in the area. This would be no different than having Chinese military forces constantly stationed in the vicinity of Groton, CT, Kings Bay, GA, San Diego, CA,  etc...

This will get ugly.

Love you long time.....

Comte de Saint Germain's picture

PRC population = 1.2 billion
US population = 320 million

Either way, nuclear or conventional war, China wins:

- After a nuclear war China's population will be reduced to about 300 million inhabitants, while in the north American landmass there will be survivors ranging only in the dozens of thousands (40 thousand at the most); thus People's Republic of China will send some 20 million of its citizens to recolonize those territories.

- The United States have no longer the industrial capacity, financial resources or manpower to sustain a major long term conventional war against China - and it will be a war of attrition. PRC will occupy America without too much resistance and the US will become a protectorate of China. Moreover, the PLA will show no mercy with those who may intent to challenge the new Sovereign; however, Americans who accept the Chinese political system will be treated with respect and dignity (in fact, they will enjoy successful lives).

Divine Wind's picture



"PRC will occupy America without too much resistance"



I hardly think this is in the cards.

I do not know where in the U.S. you are located, but most Americans outside of the liberal Meccas on the East and West Coast would be overjoyed at the opportunity to plink invading Chins.

We might be seriously fucked up, but we do have some standards.


pods's picture

There is NO way that China could hope to occupy Amerika. Amerika will fall from the inside.

The Chinese are different enough that they could not go anywhere without being noticed. 

Of course, that wouldn't bode well for the Amerikan Chinese, S. Koreans, Japs, etc.

But if this goes Tribal, forget it.

The only way Amerika gets taken down from the outside is if someone looks American enough, gets inside and suggests some crazy money scheme that long term makes Amerikans nothing but debt serfs for the invading people.

And, as history is showing, the Chinese would have to copy that idea too.


Freddie's picture


Sadly we have actors like Powers Boothe and Patrick Swayze to fight for us (on screen).  Just George Clooney and other closet cases.

Zwelgje's picture

I'm sure the Americans will do fine without their precious air support.

Consuelo's picture

One thing is for certain: China would not be doing any of this - verbally or physically, if they did not have their (military hardware) backs covered by Putin.   Which is fine, btw.    They have a right to alliances all the same as the U.S. has enjoyed over the past 70 years.

KnuckleDragger-X's picture

That sounds good right up until somebody (unintentionally) pulls the trigger then all bets are off. China has been an in-facing country till recently and I'm not sure they understand what could happen if shit starts flying....

Kayman's picture

"One thing is for certain: China would not be doing any of this" -

if U.S. politicians hadn't sold out their own country for a few sheckles. Once China got into the WTO (Bill Clinton) and worthless Chinese shit hit Walmart (Home Depot, etc.) in exchange for a (then) strong U.S. currency,  America killed its own economy and built the economy of their enemy.

Odd thing that. Strengthening your enemy while cutting yourself off at the knees. Short of nuclear war, the U.S. is impotent in the South China Sea.  Maybe it's time for Japan to disclose how many nukes it has in inventory.

bid the soldiers shoot's picture


Chinese shit hit Walmart 

Last I looked Walmart was the largest retailer in the solar system  - maybe the milky way - and no one held a gun at its customers' heads to give Walmart that distinction.

I suppose some of them would prefer shopping at F.A.O.Schwartz, Hammacher Schlemmer and Bergdorf but the parking around there stinks.

Stumpy4516's picture

China still seems to need (or want) some items like jet engines from Russia but by no means is China relying on Russia.  Just the opposite.  China has seen what happens to those who rely upon Russia and has now set it's own agenda.

China is expanding it's influence, and limits of it's terriitorial borders.  Russia is getting bitch slapped at every turn when it comes to physical projection of it's military threat or might.  China is vulnerable in it's holding in other countries such as Africa but they may surprise some people and make moves to establish themselves physically in more foreign countries.

Russia/Putin has consented to or participated to the destruction of Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen and Serbia to name a few.  China uses Russia when it is to China's benefit but has shown wisdom in not extendingi itself for Russia and appears to be aware Putin cooperates with the west.


bid the soldiers shoot's picture

How many Russian cosmonaut/engineers have been up in the Chinese Space Station advising them how to proceed?

I'll bet a lot have gone up to Tiangong and may be there right now.

Russia sacrificed a great deal to keep NATO and the US out of Crimea and Sevastopol and China is behind them 200%.

Urban Redneck's picture

There are only 3 options.  

1) Surrender to China

2) Go to war

3) Submit to arbitration and finally settle all these overlapping SCS maritime boundary disputes that have been going on for decades

The thing about option 3 is that it is time sensitive, not just militarily, but legally.  Just ask the Thai military about that border with Cambodia, and more specifically what happened when they failed to object about a certain map, when it was published (years before anyone went to arbitration)...  or in simple English for those who don't care about the intricacies of public international law - You Snooze, You Lose.

Ghordius's picture

+1,UR.  option 2) is not feasible, option 1) would mean less armament spendings for both the American and the Chinese MIC and option 3) the same

ergo we are looking at an unsolvable problem, a Gordian Knot, something that is not meant to be solved, particularly not with weapons


evidence for my point: the yearly "ballet" of the 5th Fleet. a piece of choreography and art all for itself. That's the best aspect of Ares, the dance of the swords, as practiced by Spartans

how many generations of sailors have already partecipated to this? two or already three?

Urban Redneck's picture

Well Ghordius, if you are going to write with the esoteric forked tongue of an oracle... two can play that game-

Uncle Sam not only isn't Sabazios, he isn't destined to rule Asia.  

But how will the future king break the knot?

Once the Chinese get done redrawing their maps, their King can cut a deal with his weakest rival,

The important thing is that the rival(s) accepts the map as drawn, even if an accompanying joint development agreement is more generous to the rival(s) than the lines on the map would indicate.

If a deal is cut with Brunei and Malaysia, then the Philippines and Vietnam are left with scraps proportionate to a pivot away from Uncle Sam

Because a bumbling bellicose uncle named Sam could never untie this thing.

PresidentCamacho's picture

I call bullshit on both of you. These giant nations will continue down this path until they can't.

TruthInSunshine's picture

Ghordius - I'm finished with ZH.

It was once intellectually stimulating here, but is now like a propaganda outlet for both China & Russia, following on 6 straight years of failed doom porn prognostications (and I say this as someone NOT optimistic/bullish on the macroeconomic future short, intermediate or even longer term).

Urban Redneck's picture

Take some time off, but there is no point it in comitting to new home before you find one, and if you find some gulch that the marauding army of sheeple haven't discovered... pass the word.

Ghordius's picture

UR, second that, and... take me with you guys!

Urban Redneck's picture

I can't think of another adjective in any language that really captures the simultaneous "Is it profound or is it poppycock?" nature of the Oracles.  "Forked tongue" doesn't sound right, but then Ghordian is also problematic...

I am also glad greed and ambition are such powerful motivators, otherwise the chance of intentional war would be greater, since no one wants to the Lord of the Flies.

Freddie's picture

The USA already surrendered to Mexico and the NWO/ZWO.

CharlieMike's picture

If China declares war on the US will they stop sending all their shit products to walmart?

Imagine the economic boom that would occur if we suddenly had to produce all those products domestically.

IridiumRebel's picture

People don't even work anymore in this country. How the fuck are we gonna produce anything?

Elliott Eldrich's picture

"People don't even work anymore in this country. How the fuck are we gonna produce anything?"

You start by investing in facilities and training. You give interviews and test the local population for their skills and aptitudes, then train them to do those tasks that their skills best match. You find and promote the best performers, listen to their input, and improve your processes, equipment and training. Lather, rinse, repeat.

See, management takes work too. You have to actually manage people, make decisions, listen to customers, balance budgets, set up schedules, etc. It takes a lot more work than just signing off on a PO for a pallet of crap from China. 

I see a lot of people bitching about the lazy-ass "Free Shit Army" on this forum all the time. It seems to me that the management class has gotten rather lazy over the last couple of decades as well. They appear to have completely forgotten about the work associated with active management of actual production.

IridiumRebel's picture

As a former manager, I understand that some people still work, but there is a vast population of "lazy asses". Can it be done? Yes, but a whole Lotta people are gonna have to change their mindsets....and it ain't the managers.

Elliott Eldrich's picture

"As a former manager, I understand that some people still work, but there is a vast population of "lazy asses". Can it be done? Yes, but a whole Lotta people are gonna have to change their mindsets....and it ain't the managers."

You're not wrong, but you're not completely right either. I would instead suggest that EVERYONE is going to have to change their mindsets; from the consumers who want cheap stuff, to the workers who aren't willing to do a fair day's work for a fair day's pay, to the managers who aren't willing to pay a far day's pay for a fair day's work. We're all going to have to re-think a whole lot of stuff, from what we want, to what we value, to what we're willing and not willing to do to the planet and to each other; the current global economic ecosystem is quite obviously unsustainable.

StychoKiller's picture

Look into the History of W Edwards Deming and "Statistical Process Control"

[quote] Deming made a significant contribution to Japan's reputation for innovative, high-quality products, and for its economic power.  He is regarded as having had more impact on Japanese manufacturing and business than any other individual not of Japanese heritage.  Despite being honored in Japan in 1951 with the establishment of the Deming Prize, he was only just beginning to win widespread recognition in the U.S. at the time of his death in 1993. [/quote] -- From Wikipedia

Prophets are never honored in their hometowns.

TheFourthStoog-ing's picture
TheFourthStoog-ing (not verified) CharlieMike May 26, 2015 10:26 AM

Imagine the price increase.

HenryHall's picture

Imagine the price increase.

Imagine the quality increase.

Imagine the increase in decent paying jobs.

Imagine bringing our boys home and not spending money to get them killed in foreign wars.

Sounds like a deal to me.

90% decrease in foreign military bases, 90% decrease in imports of manufactured goods especially electronic gizmos, 99% decrease in military casualities. Tell the Chinese to keep their South China Sea, and to keep their exported products because US does not want them anymore.

basho's picture

dear henryhall

i think you are asking toooo much from some of these buffoons.

imagination of the sort you propose is not a part of their kit


rejected's picture

The FSA,,, work! Your have to be kidding. 

You'd have to escort them to the factory at gunpoint.

Elliott Eldrich's picture

"You'd have to escort them to the factory at gunpoint."

Or worse, God forbid, you'd have to pay an attractive wage and offer real benefits. The horror! That might cost MONEY! Oh woe, woe...

infotechsailor's picture

You mean one that competes with free healthcare, free obama-phones, free housing, free food, $160K to blow on Apple products electronics and college parties, and 365 days of paid vacation per year?

Elliott Eldrich's picture

"You mean one that competes with free healthcare, free obama-phones, free housing, free food, $160K to blow on Apple products electronics and college parties, and 365 days of paid vacation per year?"

What fantasy-world are you living in? I can tell you for a fact that as of right now, if you're a male between 18 and 67 and need benefits, the ONLY thing you qualify for is about $160 a month in food stamps. There's a reason there's so many people living on the streets, carrying sleeping bags and blankets, and standing on street corners with cardboard signs; it's because there are no benefits available to them, and no jobs either.

The only exception is if you can get onto disability somehow, and that is not an easy thing to do, and even if you do get onto it you end up living without any benefits for months and even years while your application is processed, denied and re-processed. The days of the "cadillac driving welfare mother" are long behind us, what remains is a huge population of desperate, impoverished people who are scrambling to survive, and willing to take any shit job at any shit wage that's being offered. So fucking be happy already, you guys won!

infotechsailor's picture

That's not the business or CEO's fault. Government over-regulation, union monopolies with government bailouts of badly run companies in auto, transportation, and manufacturing, and central bank encouragement of company executives to borrow money at 0 interest to do share buybacks and give themselves multimillion dollar bonuses driving up share prices instead of invest in CAPEX is who won. Don't blame the free-market libertarians. By the way, the only people winning are the countries that practice free-market economics (or who are better than the US anyway): China, Singapore, Switzerland, Malaysia

Stumpy4516's picture

Correction.  I believe you are complaining about the products made in China by US corporations using Chinese workers and factories built in China, products made to the US corporations specs under the supervision of the US corporations, then the products are sent to the US by those US corporations to be sold in the US for the profit of the US corporation.

The same US corporations that once made those products in the US - CHOSE - to move the factories to China voluntarily.  It is the US corporations that chose NOT to produce domestically.

And why do people think any of this is limited to Walmart or China.  Those US coporations sell the foreign manufactured products in all the US stores and they are made in various countries.  I can remember when they started making their cars in Mexico.  THEN, the shock when it became common knowledge that the cars made in Mexico has fewer assembly problems than those assembled in the US plants and we WANTED assurances we would get a Mexico car.


Real Estate Geek's picture

That problem would be solved by replacing the personal income tax with tarriffs.

(Hat tip: US Constitution)

basho's picture

dream on

no one forced walmart to buy from china.

no one forced you to buy from walmart.

no one produces domestically because amis are consumers

and consumers only consume.

where have ya' been, bunky.

Madcow's picture

I'm not sure about the South China Sea 

But in the Middle East, the alliance between Saudi Arabia and Israel is unstoppable - especially now that they're comfortable using nuclear weapons. 

Rock-throwers are no match for nukes -


IridiumRebel's picture

Hard and swift comes the geo-political shift.

Bell's 2 hearted's picture

core capital goods orders


on face ... april +1.0% (bullz rejoice) ... +$710 million




revisions to february (massive) -$1.127 billion and march +$236 million ... net -$891 million more than offset $710 million gain.


another number to throw on downward revision Q1 GDP pile

dsty's picture

Lighthouses huh


lighthouses do kind of look like missiles

you no trick me right?

Urban Redneck's picture

That's not the trick...

Defence Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun said China's reclamation in the Spratlys was comparable with construction of homes and roads on the mainland. "From the perspective of sovereignty, there is absolutely no difference," he told reporters.

The trick involves pictures drawn on paper, and presented as gifts to officials of other governments.  And given the ass clowns that Obozo generally appoints as Ambassadors, this could get really humorous if it doesn't get really bloody.

Sid James's picture

They're building lighthouses with frickin' lasers on top.

crackpuff's picture

I haven't quite put my finger on if Russia and China are truly on board with the big next stage or if they are genuine obsticles. I'm leaning towards China maybe leading Russia up a creek, if both aren't on board already. That leads me to conclude this whole China vs USA thing is most likely just more deceptive bullshit. War or no war

crackpuff's picture

How dare you downvote me? All is how it's reported huh? I'll send you chinese mustard softened with liquid slanty bastard

basho's picture

keep puffin' the crack, mate lol

crackpuff's picture

Your mom's behind isn't enough crack to get me drinking the same kool-aid as you. CNN and FOX is also warning about a more aggressive China, STFU. Don't make me pull out my bigger pipe. I got some hot mustard in my other pocket just for you too