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The Conversation: The US is about to blow up a fake warship in the South China Sea – but naval rivalry with Beijing is very real and growing
As part of a joint military exercise with the Philippines, the U.S. Navy is slated to sink a mock warship on April 26, 2023, in the South China Sea.
The live-fire drill is not a response to increased tensions with China over Taiwan, both the U.S. and the Philippines have stressed. But, either way, Beijing isn’t happy – responding by holding its own staged military event involving actual warships and fighter jets deployed around Taiwan, a self-governed island that Beijing claims as its own.
The tit-for-tat war games underscore a reality that U.S. presidents have increasingly had to contend with as the 21st century has drawn on. More than a century after President Theodore Roosevelt made the United States the preeminent maritime power in the Pacific, that position is under threat. China is seeking to displace it.
As a scholar of East Asian security and maritime disputes, I believe that the growing rivalry between the U.S. and China over dominance of the Pacific has the potential to define geopolitics in the Indo-Pacific region for the next half-century.
Read Global Security Director Krista Wiegand’s full article in The Conversation here.