State-run media in belligerent mood after USS Lassen challenges Beijing’s territorial claims in disputed Spratly archipelago
Date: 28 October 2015
By: Tom Phillips in Beijing
Twenty-four hours after Washington challenged Beijing’s territorial claims in the region by deploying a warship to waters around the disputed Spratly archipelago, the notoriously nationalistic Global Times accused the Pentagon of provoking China.
“In [the] face of the US harassment, Beijing should deal with Washington tactfully and prepare for the worst,” the newspaper argued in an editorial on Wednesday.
“This can convince the White House that China, despite its unwillingness, is not frightened to
fight a war with the US in the region, and is determined to safeguard its national interests and dignity.”
The People’s Liberation Army Daily, China’s leading military newspaper, used a front-page editorial to accuse the US of sowing chaos in countries such as Afghanistan and Iraq.
“Cast-iron facts show that time and again the United States recklessly uses force and starts wars,
stirring things up where once there was stability, causing the bitterest of harm to those countries directly involved,” the newspaper said, according to Reuters.
Tuesday’s manoeuvre, which saw the guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen sail close to artificial Chinese islands, came after Barack Obama and Chinese president Xi Jinping failed to find common ground over the issue during recent talks at the White House.
US defence secretary Ash Carter warned that further “freedom of navigation” operations in the region were planned. “We will fly, sail and operate wherever international law permits,” he told a congressional hearing. [FULL STORY]