Chinese Imperialism in the South China Sea

By Jim Donahue

China’s official Xinhua news agency says it has formed a municipal council for a group of newly established cities in a disputed part of the South China Sea, and has authorized the deployment of a military base in the area.

In the published report Sunday in China, 45 deputies have been elected to a municipal people’s congress, representing 1,100 residents of several islands known in Chinese as Xisha, Zhongsha and Nansha. The council will be headquartered on an island that China has named Yongxing, and the 3 islands in question are part of the new city called Sansha.

Chinese officials have indicated that it’s Central Military Commission has approved the formation of a Sansha garrison command and has authorized the deployment of a military base in the area, saying it is China’s responsibility to lend aid to the national defense of the region.

The Washington, DC based Center for a New American Security said the formal deployment of Chinese troops into the area is the latest example of Beijing trying to boost its influence in the area.

Oriana Skylar Mastro, An expert in Asian-Pacific affairs from the center, said in a statement: “Are a couple of reservists sitting on some shoals or reefs actually going to make a military difference? Probably not. But, when you look at it in the broader subset of Chinese coercive diplomacy and how they’re using exhibitionary military moves to show their resolve and they couple that with political moves, it seems that they’re making a very significant leap forward in what they’re trying to accomplish in the area.”

In a statement Saturday, the Vietnamese government said it opposes the establishment of city of Sansha. It called the move a “serious violation” of Hanoi’s sovereignty over the Paracel and Spratly chains, which it claims as part of Danang city and Khanh Hoa province respectively. The state-run Voice of Vietnam quotes authorities in Danang and Khanh Hoa as saying Beijing risks harming the friendship between the two neighbors.

The islands are claimed in whole or in part by the countries of Brunei, China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam.

9 Responses to "Chinese Imperialism in the South China Sea"

  1. Peter   July 24, 2012 at 4:00 am

    Like Japanese garrison of disputed islands? Or Vietnamese garrison of their disputed Sprately islands or Phillippine garrison of disputed islands? What imperialism author is talking about? China is one of the last to garrison disputed islands.

    • GM   July 24, 2012 at 3:09 pm

      Read closely, I never said that other countries haven’t done the same thing. I only indicated that China had done so more recently, and China being the 800 pound gorilla in the room, none of these other countries can do anything about it. Do you think that because China waited so long to garrison these islands that it is some how ok? What I was doing was reporting trending news. Are you afraid free speech Peter? Over here in America free speech is what we are all about. Maybe you should come here and try it out for yourself. Enjoy!

      • Peter   July 24, 2012 at 5:43 pm

        Then why haven’t you mentioned the word imperialism with Japan’s actions, Vietnam’s action, or Phillippine’s action and only singled out Chinese action? Where was your piece when the above three country garrisoned disputed islands?

        This is not about free speech but manipulation of readers. You tying my comment to inhbitation free speech and subtley trying to indicate I’m in a place without free speech is also very mainpulative. If this is how you think then you sir are prejudiced and biased against different views other than you own as I have not personally attacked you in my comment. Such personal attack, however subtle, is only worth in smear campaigns of US politics.

        • GM   July 24, 2012 at 6:00 pm

          Peter, I am not a politician, and again, I was reporting TRENDING NEWS. Tell me when any of those countries you named did a similar garrison move and I will research it and cover it. Or write an article yourself, and I will publish it. But for right now, it would seem that they haven’t done anything like this in YEARS. Definitely not TRENDING. I understand that you are very patriotic to your homeland, and as an American I am as well. But when these things happen, and they happen to the US as well, you should be proud and quit whinning and be a proud patriot and stand on the highest mountain and shout “praise be to my countrymen. We will not be denied” Enjoy!!

        • GM   July 24, 2012 at 9:01 pm

          As I asked you in the last reply, when did these countries garrison any of these islands. How many years ago. Again, THEY ARE NOT TRENDING OR BREAKING NEWS. I do report on other, older news stories, but just not now Peter. Check out my newest column just posted 20 minutes ago on the subject. View it here: And remember, I live in America, and you have yet to inform me where it is that you reside. I can only assume from your tone that you are a proud Chinese citizen, but realistically, you are probably of Chinese descent, living in America, the greatest country on the planet, and sitting in front of your computer, saying things that might get you arrested in China, OR WORSE, and enjoying our freedom of speech, all the while vilifying my words because I dare to challenge Chinese Imperalism, and not rehashing old, tired news of several minor countries attempts at garrison. My opinions are valid as are yours. And that is the backbone of American Freedom. Free speech and the ability to agree to disagree without hate. Enjoy

  2. lieo   July 23, 2012 at 6:13 am

    @freedom it looks like chinese aren’t knowledgeable about what happened in the past with those so called imperial countries. all fell the hard way. The bigger they are(china) the HARDER they FALL.

  3. Freedom   July 23, 2012 at 4:26 am

    How many times China was being a parts??? Imperialist will collapse. What country were “imperial” Past China, Roman, Greek, Hitler, Communist USSR,
    Who will be next? Cha Ching.

  4. Ming   July 23, 2012 at 1:01 am

    Long live Chinese imperialism!


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