Underneath the Rhetoric and Doublespeak…
By Erick San Juan
For us who has been observing the events unfolding in the contested areas of the South China Sea , we have been bombarded with word wars already before any real conflict starts. As I monitor the different pronouncements from various camps, there seems to be no real solution in sight. For they are all talk and more talk (Translation – rhetoric and doublespeak).
We heard so many times already that Beijing (and so are the other claimants) will abide by the Declaration on the Code of Conduct, meaning, all disputes should be resolve in a peaceful way. But, all we can see are military build up in the region. Isn't this doublespeak?
As what General Liang Guanglie, China ’s Minister of National Defense said in his speech at the Shangri-la Dialogue recently :
"The past few years have seen a rapid socio-economic development in China and correspondingly, progress in its defense and military modernization. However, such progress is within the legitimate need of self-defense. It is reiterated in China ’s latest defense white paper that “ China adheres to a defense policy that is purely defensive in nature”, “whether at present or in the future, no matter how developed it may be, China will never seek hegemony or military expansion.” This is a solemn pledge made by the Chinese government to the international community as well as all people of Chinese origin around the world. It is a strategic choice made by the Chinese government based on its fundamental interest and the trend of times. It reflects the continuity and consistency of such a defensive nature."
Chinese President Hu Jintao, in his state visit to the US (as reported by Daily Mail Reporter last January 22, 2011) told the American audience the same thing while President Barack Obama has also expressed similar concerns regarding the military build up of China.
But Hu dismissed the concerns and urged the U.S. to treat China 'with respect and as equals'.
'China-U.S. relations will enjoy smooth and steady growth when the two countries handle well issues involving each other's major interests,' he said.
'Otherwise, our relations will suffer constant trouble or even tension.'
He told the U.S.-China Business Council: 'We will remain committed to the path of peaceful development. We do not engage in an arms race, we are not a military threat to any country. China will never seek to dominate or pursue an expansionist policy.’
The abovementioned reports signified the confluence of interests of the two superpowers in the Asia-Pacific region. No tension or even conflict will happen if they will respect each other’s “interests”.
But how about the interests of the rest of the countries occupying the said region? Don’t they have the right or interests to protect?
Like in our situation as a sovereign state, we have our own interest to protect too. If the saber rattling in the disputed area in the South China Sea will continue to be used as a way for the superpowers to "deceive" the world, then, we are heading for a mutually assured destruction, whether we like it or not.
Even if Uncle Sam will keep on saying that he will support our country in times of trouble, let us be wary and learn to read between the lines. We never learn from history on how many times we were shortchanged (through some of our leaders/collaborators). It’s about time to get our acts together and use our assets to get what's due us as a staunch ally.
As for the rest of the world, when are we going to realize that underneath the rhetoric and doublespeak of the superpowers lie the deceit and manipulation by working on both sides of the fence. We have to remind everyone that every time that the big power centers suffer from economic and/or financial turmoil from within, the elite pushes politicians and the military to go to war to unite their people instead of civil war in the process.
Remember : from Carl von Clausewitz (“On War”) - “War is a continuation of politics by other means.”
A 'perfect storm' of fiscal deficits in so many countries could lead to a global financial crisis. According to New York University professor Nouriel Roubini, this ongoing global financial meltdown is catastrophic.
There is really a vicious design to push the world to go to war. Firstly, the masterminds create the situation. Then destroy the economies of nation states. Sow fear and terror. Sacrifice some of it's nationals and brainwashed them to fight a perceived enemy. Remind their constituents that it is their patriotic and moral duty to fight wars as a supreme sacrifice. Sounds familiar? Wake up!