Expert explains true dynamics of China and US conflict in the South China Sea

Expert explains true dynamics of China and US conflict in the South China Sea

THE West Philippine Sea, also known internationally as the South China Sea, is now the center of the conflict between China and the Philippines.

However, in an interview with SMNI Radio, former UP Professor Roland Simbulan explained the true rivalry between the United States and China over the disputed waters.

Correct. It is a conflict between America and China, not between the Philippines and China.

Simbulan explained that the US and China are vying to become the world’s number one economy.

Why is the West Philippine Sea important to China?

According to Prof. Simbulan, the disputed territory is a trade route for Chinese ships.

The US wants to control this route to regulate the entry and exit of China’s imports and exports, aiming to curb their economic growth.

“If, for example, the US Seventh Fleet actively operates in the South China Sea, they could blockade the Strait of Malacca in the south near Indonesia and the Sea of Japan in the north. This would cripple the Chinese economy, which is China’s nightmare scenario,” Prof. Roland Simbulan, Former UP Professor said.

As a countermeasure, China invented the 9-dash line to claim these territories.

This territorial claim allows them to set up military installations, position nuclear-powered submarines, and deploy patrol forces in the area.

“They want to counter this in advance, as I mentioned, which is why they invented the so-called 9-dash line to claim almost the entire South China Sea and control the operations of the US Seventh Fleet and other navies,” Simbulan added.

Simbulan emphasized that the US is fast-tracking its attempts to control the South China Sea before China surpasses its military power.

This, he said, is why there are many EDCA Sites in the Philippines.

Philippines becoming a large aircraft carrier for the United States—Former UP Professor

“We are now like a forward base for America, like an aircraft carrier here. If the US installs Tomahawk missiles here aimed at their biggest cities, Beijing and Shanghai, they will feel threatened, especially in the South China Sea,” Simbulan added.

Simbulan believes that China’s aggression in the disputed waters is due to the current administration’s excessive reliance on the Americans.

“They are furious because our territory is being used again, possibly against them, and their security is threatened,” he added.

The former UP Professor sees that its excessive alliance with America could affect the Philippines’ foreign policy.

Professor Simbulan’s explanations can be further explored in the recently released third edition of his book.

Simbulan published the first and second editions of his book in 1984 and 1985, which became the basis for studies on the presence of US Military Bases in the Philippines.

The book is based on his interviews with US government officials knowledgeable about the deployment of US military assets in the country.

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