The Chinese Communist Party is obsessed with hard power. It seems to believe that as long as it is economically strong and boorish and has warships with advanced weapons, it can also demand wider land, sea and air territories.
The logic of authoritarian rule has always been based on bullying.
China has adopted a tough and arrogant attitude, and its expansion could increase the risk of regional conflict.
Apart from China-Japan friction over the Diaoyutai Islands (釣魚台), the near-miss collision between the US and Chinese warships could have set off conflict if the US had not taken quick evasive action.
Since China has repeatedly provoked the US and caused problems, a conflict in the form of a limited sea battle could be beneficial for the US and the civilized world.
In the case of the South China Sea incident, if the US warship had continued its trajectory, the smaller Chinese warship would likely have been sunk.
If the Liaoning carrier strike group had attacked the US warship, the US could have deployed the USS George Washington.
Since the Liaoning does not have full warfare capacity or high numbers, the outcome is predictable. The incident would sweep away China’s prestige and Asia would be all cheers.
As a civilized country, the US has shown tolerance to ease conflict and it does not start a war lightly.
However, this is exactly why China is acting so wild these days.
Democracy and dictatorship cannot coexist and civilized and non-civilized countries will inevitably confront one another. What is the US waiting for? Is it waiting for China to be fully armed? By that time, the Chinese military could outweigh the civilized world and the US would be unable to stop it.
Chen Pokong is a Chinese democracy activist in the US.Translated by Eddy Chang