Sunday, November 20, 2011
U.S. Challenging China
Obama just recently completed a deal with Australia that will see up to 2,500 U.S. marines at a base in Darwin Australia a move that makes China uneasy. The U.S. already has bases in Okinawa and Guam a U.S. possession. The U.S. also has close military ties with South Korea. The U.S. now sees an opening in Myanmar (Burma) as the military regime eases repression and wants to offset Chinese influence by courting other powers. Vietnam too has friendlier relations with the U.S. again to offset Chinese power.
At the recent APEC meeting in Hawaii Obama announced a Trans-Pacific Partnership accord between the U.S. and eight other nations but China was not included. The U.S. said other countries were welcome to join but must meet U.S. terms re currency and protection of intellectual property. China will no doubt remain outside the agreement.
The U.S. is in a somewhat contradictory role in its relationship with China. China holds more U.S. treasury debt than any other country. Also many U.S. based companies are global and are investing heavily in China and also welcome it as an expanding market at a time when western markets are growing very slowly if at all.
Nevertheless helping out U.S. corporations is still a factor. Both the Philippines and Vietnam have awarded oil exploration contracts for companies such as Exxon Mobil and others for areas of the South China sea claimed by China. The U.S. can protect the interests of Exxon and also develop more military ties with the Philippines and better relations with Vietnam.
These activities may cause China to further build up its armed forces to counter the growing military presence of the U.S. in its backyard. For much more see this article.