19:44 GMT +330 March 2017
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    US Navy amphibious assault vehicles with Philippine and US troops on board maneuver in the waters during a combined exercise in the South China Sea.

    US Pacific Command Welcomes Patrols by Any Nation in South China Sea

    © AP Photo/ Bullit Marquez
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    PACOM Commander Harry Harris said that the United States views favourably international patrols by vessels of any country in the South China Sea.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The United States views favourably international patrols by vessels of any country in the South China Sea, US Pacific Command (PACOM) Commander Harry Harris said in a briefing on Thursday.

    "I welcome patrols by any nation in the South China Sea because the South China Sea is international water and airspace," Harris stated.

    The South China Sea dispute between Beijing and a number of regional states centers around the Spratly Islands, a group of over 750 islands and reefs that are believed to hold significant oil and gas reserves.

    Countries that lay claim to those, but also to other islands, also say they serve as an important commercial shipping route.

    In January, Harris said that the US Navy would increase the number, complexity and scope of missions in the region to protect "freedom of navigation."

    The Chinese Defense Ministry argued, however, that US patrols near the Paracel Islands chain in the South China Sea undermine regional peace and security.

    Related:

    China Deploys Fighter Jets to Contested South China Sea Island - Reports
    Pentagon Seeks to Deploy Mobile Artillery Near South China Sea
    Beijing Smacks Down US Criticism Over Missiles in South China Sea
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    patrol, US Pacific Command (PACOM), South China Sea, United States
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    • avatar
      vendor
      What they are saying is please create a conflict situation with China. We welcome it.
    • avatar
      michaelin reply toBaybars(Show commentHide comment)
      Baybars, I am expecting the australian 'government' to comply...
    • avatar
      Randall Lee Hilburnin reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
      michael, True, the US Navy is only a shadow of its former very powerful self.
    • avatar
      Randall Lee Hilburn
      The US is hoping to get so much military operations going in the area claimed by China that a violent reaction from China will occur. Which the US will use to justify a war they will blame China for starting. That will be one way for the US to get out of paying China the money they owe them. Something like that has actually been proposed. If they can nuke China they won't have to repay the money, or words to that effect.
    • avatar
      michaelin reply toRandall Lee Hilburn(Show commentHide comment)
      Randall, but still a strong presence, at least with numbers of ships and projection...:) and I think too from our conversations, the decline in the
      quality of the Marines, is another sign of the navy's problems.
    • avatar
      Randall Lee Hilburnin reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
      michael, I was speaking of them being a shadow in a relative sense compared to what they once were. I no longer see the Marines as the elite troops they once were either.
    • avatar
      michaelin reply toRandall Lee Hilburn(Show commentHide comment)
      Randall, and you know that is sad - regardless of which country we are talking about. To have a reputation for something as in quality of training or design and manufacture of machines and other things, maybe making movies etc and for that to be lost as a part of the natural decline of a people. Hopefully for us all it is cyclic and that we learn the next time around. :)
    • Ivan Buckeyein reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
      michael, A natural decline foisted upon the people. What do you expect for a capitalism nowadays that procures individuals who are the greediest of the masses to run the nation and companies including media. Whoever practices unbridled capitalism will be eaten alive by it.
    • avatar
      michaelin reply toIvan Buckeye(Show commentHide comment)
      Ivan, thanks, I was thinking too of the well known book Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. - But it's not just them, it's any 'empire' over the past several millenia. As you so correctly note capitalism has done and continues to do the damage currently...:)
    • avatar
      goldbergred
      USA is planning to start World war 3 in every corner of the Earth. In Syria USA will sign for peace at the same time they want Assad to step down, In South China Sea they want to engage both China and North Korea.
    • avatar
      Randall Lee Hilburnin reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
      michael, The United States reached its zenith and commenced its decline at the moment of the Kennedy assassination. To live threw the whole thing and know within oneself what was lost; worst of all to know what humanity lost, is to say the least disheartening. At that time two men of vision Kennedy and Khrushchev lead the two super powers and could have ended the Cold War and prevented anymore of its evil effects. IF!

      But yes I agree, I can't help feeling a little sad to see how the Navy and Marines have deteriorated over time. Worst of all to see how they are now put to such wicked use by a totally corrupted US Government. My extended family has something like a tradition of service in the Navy and Marines.
    • avatar
      michaelin reply toRandall Lee Hilburn(Show commentHide comment)
      Randall, that's an interesting point about the kennedy assassination being a state of both zenith and decline. I must give that further consideration - and reading! :)

      Randall, does the tradition continue?
    • avatar
      Randall Lee Hilburnin reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
      michael, Not so much anymore. Mine was the last generation where it was particularly common. Our parents were almost entirely combat veterans of WW2 and/or Korea which were extremely recent at the time. So we were exposed to things all of the time. We grew up thinking that being in the service, at least for a while, was just part of what it meant to be a man. It was a totally different world then, it was a different country too.
    • avatar
      michaelin reply toRandall Lee Hilburn(Show commentHide comment)
      Randall, yes! This is what I find both fascinating and disturbing - the changes to the psychological environment of a country or culture. It can sometimes happen in a very short period, sometimes a slow change, but nevertheless it does happen. This is part of the generation gap that some talk about - the lack of shared experiences. Hence limited understanding, limited (if any) respect and so on. And it is not something that can be taught in a classroom or seminar. We lose something - maybe a sense of honour? Brotherhood - esprit de corps? My father too was in Europe and up until the day he died he had the nightmares of serving his country (england). From what you are saying then, it may be that the changes in the '60's were far reaching indeed.
    • avatar
      Randall Lee Hilburnin reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
      michael, The country lost its soul in the 60's. This isn't to say that there weren't some serious reforms needed. But what came out of those years destroyed the social cohesion of the nation which has never been regained. Since then what you have is what Friedrich Engels referred to as the "War Of All Against All", the war of everybody against everybody else. The banks and the military/industrial complex are the only things still holding the country together in my opinion.

      There is a book I would highly recommend, that is if you can find it, that goes into detail on the changes within the US Military during the Vietnam War, especially the US Army, "Crises In Command - Mismanagement In The Army" by Gabriel and Savage. The former was a Lt. Colonel and the latter was a Major in the Army Reserve and both were professors at MIT. After reading this you'll be able to see a major reason why the US Military can no longer produce anything but a long line of one failure after another.
    • avatar
      michaelin reply toRandall Lee Hilburn(Show commentHide comment)
      Randall, thanks for the heads up, I'll chase that book now.. :)
      Yes, it is the lack of cohesion....:(
    • avatar
      Randall Lee Hilburnin reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
      michael, There are some other titles I could give you relevant to the discussion at hand if you're interested.
    • avatar
      michaelin reply toRandall Lee Hilburn(Show commentHide comment)
      Randall, that would be much appreciated! Thanks!
    • avatar
      Randall Lee Hilburnin reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
      michael, These books may be difficult or even impossible to find, but if you can they are very worthwhile:
      (1) "Military Incompetence" - by the same Savage that helped write the other book. It discusses the conditions at the time around the fiasco and near disaster that was the Invasion Of Granada.
      (2) "More Bucks Less Bang" It was a very limited printed book from the early 1980's. It discusses the utter corruption and incompetence of the US system of military procurement.
      (3) "Giap" - by MacDonald. Giap was the Vietnamese General who defeated the US in Vietnam. Macdonald was formerly RA and the senior NATO armored commander in Europe during part of the Cold War. It is based on extensive personal interviews of Giap by MacDonald. The insights that came from seeing the rot within the US military from the other side are highly enlightening.
      (4) "War, Mutiny, and Revolution In The German High Seas Fleet - The Diary Of Seaman Herman Stumpf" Out of print since the 1930's. I read it while I was in the Navy during the Vietnam period. I can personally vouch for the conditions in the German High Seas Fleet during WW1 being very similar to the conditions in the US Navy during the time I served.
    • avatar
      michaelin reply toRandall Lee Hilburn(Show commentHide comment)
      Randall, thanks for the list. I have briefly checked abebooks and only one crops up there - Giap. So that's a start. I'll start to ferret around on the week-end - I like a challenge! :)
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