Philippines Rusting and Sinking Ship a Threat to China?
Philippines has accused a Chinese Maritime Militia ship of ramming a Philippine boat in the South China Sea on Sunday. In a video of the incident, a Philippine Coast Guard ship and a Chinese Maritime Militia ship were seen. The conflict between the Philippines and China in the South China Sea has been going on for decades, but there have been some changes in recent months. The Philippine media has reported on the sea clashes between the two countries and Conflict events are now given considerable coverage. This is the second time in a week that Filipino journalists have shot the incident near the South China Sea. This place is known as Second Thomas Shoal, Iongin Shoal, or Rain Eye Reef.
Why is the Philippines doing this?
This is not a random incident caught on camera. It is part of a deliberate policy adopt by the Philippine government to draw the world’s attention to China’s “bullying”. The Philippines says it is its maritime territory and China is trying to control it. “I think we’ve seen a significant shift this year,” says retired Colonel Raymond Powell of Stanford University’s Gordon Note Center. I call it the “transparency campaign”.
The campaign began in January this year when the Philippine government began releasing more and more videos of such maritime collisions to local media. The Philippines began ferrying more and more journalists by boat and plane to the disputed waters where such incidents take place. “This is to shed light on China’s ongoing confrontational actions,” says Colonel Powell. was equivalent to.’
China seems to stun by this new strategy. The strategy appears to be working, says Oriana Skyler Mastro of the Freeman Espoogli Institute for International Studies. “We’ve seen a kind of slowdown in China’s activity,” she says.
Where does the Philippines send supplies?
This year, China has shown leniency, due to which the Philippines has been able to send essential goods to its border post, Second Thomas Shoal, several times. This sea border post of the Philippines is actually a World War II ship name “Sierra Madre”. In the year 1999, this ship was deliberately abandon in the shallow waters of the sea. It is now rusting and gradually decaying. A small group of nine Philippine soldiers is station on it.
China Intends to Play a Long-term Game
In 2014, a BBC team visited this ship. At that time, it was in very bad condition and had large holes and sea waves passed through it. Many analysts believe that China intends to play a long-term game. When relations between China and the Philippines for good measure, the Chinese coast guard continued to allow shipments to the Sierra Madre, but when relations between the two soured, China stopped the delivery of supplies to the ship. However, China believes that the Sierra Madre is not a permanent ship and there will come a time when the Philippines will have to withdraw its troops from there because the ship is slowly breaking up and sinking into the sea.
What will happen between China and the Philippines now?
Since President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s election victory last year, the Philippines’ foreign policy has become a stark contrast to former President Rodrigo Duterte’s six-year rule.
Alliance with the United States
President Marcos has not only reversed Duterte’s policy of staying close to China but has also re-adopted the policy of alliance with the United States. Along with this, he has also strongly raised the issue of China’s interference in the exclusive economic zone of the Philippines, 200 nautical miles away. There is much more going on in this case. Philippine sources say the Philippines sends food and water as supplies to the Sierra Madre. But it is being said that apart from these supplies, the Philippines is also quietly transporting construction materials.
China and the Philippines
“It’s very difficult to extend the life of a ship. I think we’re reaching a tipping point. The end of the Sierra Madre is near. It can break very quickly,” says Colonel Powell. Perhaps because of this, there is a new sense of heightened tension between China and the Philippines in the region. The Philippines is very commit to its presence in the Ayungin Shul. At the same time, China is once again showing its power and has decide that the Sierra Madre will not given a new lease of life. If it happens then what will happen?
South China Sea
Will China immediately take over this shallow area as it has done elsewhere in the South China Sea? Will the Philippines anchor another ship on the Ayungin Shoal? And if this happens, what will be the reaction of America? No one knows what will happen next, but the day is coming, and probably coming very soon, when things between China, the United States, and the Philippines will not remain the same.
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