News / Asia

    US B-52 Bombers Challenge China Air Defense Zone

    US Warplanes Defy China Air Defense Zonei
    X
    November 27, 2013 6:41 AM
    The U.S. military has made clear its position on China's new aviation restricted zone by flying two bombers through the area. China recently restricted air space in part of the East China Sea to assert its claim over a group of disputed islands. VOA Pentagon correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
    Watch related video from VOA's Luis Ramirez.
    VOA News
    The U.S. military has flown two unarmed B-52 bombers near disputed islands in the East China Sea, defying an attempt by China to wrest control of the territory from Japan.
     
    China's defense ministry said Wednesday it monitored "the entire course of the flights and identified them in a timely way." It warned "China is capable of exercising effective control" over the area.
     
    The Pentagon said the Monday flights did not trigger an immediate response from Beijing, which two days earlier declared the airspace part of a new air defense zone. China warned all aircraft to identify themselves before entering the area and to obey all orders from Beijing. 
     
    U.S. officials described the Monday flights as part of long-planned and routine training missions, but analysts say it was a clear message that Washington will not recognize China's attempt to establish control over the area.
     
    Ralph Cossa of the Hawaii-based Pacific Forum told VOA the B-52 flights were a "quick and appropriate" response to what is seen by many as a Chinese escalation.
     
    "I think it was important to quickly demonstrate that we were not going to essentially allow the Chinese to start carving out international airspace that others cannot use," said Cossa.
     
    China published coordinates for the so-called East China Sea Air Identification Zone on Saturday and warned it would take emergency defense measures to enforce its claim. Now, it is unclear to what extent China will enforce the new rules.
     
    Herman Finley, an associate professor at the Asia-Pacific Center, told VOA that while it is not likely China will back down, it is probably not looking for a confrontation at this time.
     
    "[The Chinese] push, they see what the reaction is, and then they push back when they see there's an opportunity. They've made their point. They'll wait and see when there's an appropriate, relatively predictable time to reassert their prerogatives," said Finley.
     
    Some analysts have described the Chinese move as a miscalculation, saying it may have underestimated U.S. resolve to protect the interests of its ally, Japan.
     
    Michael McKinley with the Australia National University told VOA that China is "pushing its luck" in this regard.
     
    "It's attempting to see what is in the realm of the possible and the tolerable. The problem is that it's going to run into increasing resistance, particularly from those who think it would be better now rather than later to confront China with some higher form of force," said McKinley.
     
    The flights over the uninhabited islands -- known as the Senkaku in Japan and the Diaoyu in China -- came one week before U.S. Vice President Joe Biden is scheduled to visit Beijing as part of a week-long trip to the Asia-Pacific region.
     
    Biden is expected to voice U.S. concerns to Chinese officials about the increasingly tense situation, which comes as Beijing seeks to lay claim to large swaths of the East and South China seas.
     
    Japan annexed the islets in the late 19th century, and China claimed sovereignty over the archipelago in 1971. Beijing linked its claims to ancient maps it says shows the territory has been Chinese for centuries.
     
    The festering China-Japan dispute is one of several maritime controversies pitting China against Southeast Asian nations, including the Philippines, Vietnam, Brunei and Malaysia.
     
    Beijing has indicated a willingness to negotiate the disputes, but has so far rejected calls for multilateral talks. Chinese leaders would prefer separate talks with each country.

    You May Like

    US-Russia Tensions Complicate Syria War

    With a shared enemy and opposing allies, Russia and the US are working to avoid confrontation

    Video Re-opening Old Wounds in Beirut's Bullet-riddled Yellow House

    Built in neo-Ottoman style in 1920s, it is set to be re-opened in Sept. as ‘memory museum’ - bullet-riddled walls and bunkered positions overlooking city’s notorious ‘Green Line’ maintained for posterity

    Cambodian-Americans Lobby for Human Rights Resolution

    Resolution condemns all forms of political violence in Cambodia, urges Cambodian government to end human rights violations, calls for respect of press freedom

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Re-Opening Old Wounds in a Bullet-Riddled Cultural Landmarki
    X
    John Owens
    June 26, 2016 2:04 PM
    A cultural landmark before Lebanon’s civil war transformed it into a nest of snipers, Beirut’s ‘Yellow House’ is once again set to play a crucial role in the city.  Built in a neo-Ottoman style in the 1920s, in September it is set to be re-opened as a ‘memory museum’ - its bullet-riddled walls and bunkered positions overlooking the city’s notorious ‘Green Line’ maintained for posterity. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Re-Opening Old Wounds in a Bullet-Riddled Cultural Landmark

    A cultural landmark before Lebanon’s civil war transformed it into a nest of snipers, Beirut’s ‘Yellow House’ is once again set to play a crucial role in the city.  Built in a neo-Ottoman style in the 1920s, in September it is set to be re-opened as a ‘memory museum’ - its bullet-riddled walls and bunkered positions overlooking the city’s notorious ‘Green Line’ maintained for posterity. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Brexit Resounds in US Presidential Contest

    Britain’s decision to leave the European Union is resounding in America’s presidential race. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, Republican presumptive nominee Donald Trump sees Britain’s move as an affirmation of his campaign’s core messages, while Democrat Hillary Clinton sees the episode as further evidence that Trump is unfit to be president.
    Video

    Video New York Pride March A Celebration of Life, Mourning of Loss

    At this year’s march in New York marking the end of pride week, a record-breaking crowd of LGBT activists and allies marched down Manhattan's Fifth Avenue, in what will be long remembered as a powerful display of solidarity and remembrance for the 49 victims killed two weeks ago in an Orlando gay nightclub.
    Video

    Video NASA Juno Spacecraft, Nearing Jupiter, to Shed Light on Gas Giant

    After a five-year journey, the spacecraft Juno is nearing its destination, the giant planet Jupiter, where it will enter orbit and start sending data back July 4th. As Mike O'Sullivan reports from Pasadena, California, the craft will pierce the veil of Jupiter's dense cloud cover to reveal its mysteries.
    Video

    Video Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territory

    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora