A Pentagon official specializing in China recently warned that while US competition with China is “not a replica” of the 40-year Cold War waged against the Soviet Union in the 20th century, it is “equally as consequential and therefore merits the same concentration of effort.”
As the US rushes to confront China as it continues to assert its military and political power in East Asia, one Pentagon official has warned a congressional advisory committee that the competition will be neither short nor cheap.
“In most of the potential flashpoints in the Indo-Pacific region – the Taiwan Strait, the South China Sea, the Senkaku Islands or the Korean Peninsula – the United States may find itself in a military crisis with China,” Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for China Chad Sbragia told the United States-China Economic and Security Review Commission on Thursday.
Sbragia pointed to Chinese military expansion, especially of its maritime forces, as a key indicator that Beijing is taking seriously its ability to assert power inside what it calls “the first island chain,” or those archipelagoes bounding the eastern coast of Asia, stretching from the Kuril Islands to Japan, the Senkaku Islands, Taiwan, the Philippines and Borneo.
According to Beijing’s tripartite plan for meeting and exceeding US technological capability in war by 2049, once Chinese forces reach technological parity with the US and begin to surpass them, China’s People’s Liberation Army…