Wednesday, April 16, 2014


China Cancels Fleet Review For Western Pacific Naval Symposium

Photo: U.S. Navy

  On March 31, 2014 we published our post titled THE DRAGON SHOWS HIS PETTY SIDE describing how China refused to invite Japan to participate in a naval review. Later we carried the news that the United States had refused to participate in the review and urged other regional navies to withdraw in our post WILL THE DRAGON SWIM ALONE, LET's HOPE SO.   On April 16, 2014 we learned that the Dragon has cancelled the fleet review. In their cancellation announcement they cited the still on going search for the missing Malaysian airliner which was inbound for China with a large number of Chinese nationals as passengers , Chinese authorities stated that the festive nature of the review seemed inappropriate with so many families in mourning. Frankly we agree, except for one point.

 When the Dragon decided to use the review to deliberately embarrass its economic rival Japan, that pretty well killed the festive nature of the review. With the U.S. and others cancelling and the review turning into an aggressive political statement one really may question the sincerity of the Chinese government. Cancelled due to national mourning, or because the Dragon was going to have to swim alone? In either case cancellation was the proper action but what a sad event to intrude on our analysis of a historic international gathering.of navies.

 Our appreciation to all navies that cancelled participation in protest to the abuse of Japan's delegation. Our condolences to the families of the lost. At least there was no posturing for advantage and conditional responses to the international naval search that is still on going. Why can't we display these better behaviors without the recovery of the bodies of innocents as the object of naval cooperation?


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