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China ‘not frightened of war with US’ – Chinese media after Spratly Islands destroyer incident

The presence of the USS Lassen near the disputed Spratly Islands is a “political show” to be dealt with calmly, China’s nationalistic Global Times wrote, stressing the country “is unwilling but not frightened to fight a war with the US in the region.”

The passage of the US Navy guided missile destroyer USS Lassen past an artificial island in the Subi Reef of the Spratly archipelago remains under the scrutiny of Chinese military, diplomacy and media.

China’s Global Times, known for being closely aligned with China’s communist party, published an op-ed entitled: “After the show, it’s time for US destroyer to leave”, which expressed an unusually cocky opinion of the incident.

“We should stay calm. If we feel disgraced and utter some furious words, it will only make the US achieve its goal of irritating us,” the article says, in its analysis of the nature of US harassment. “It seems that the US only wants to display its presence.”

“China, despite its unwillingness, is not frightened to fight a war with the US in the region, and is determined to safeguard its national interests and dignity.”

The article goes to say that “Beijing ought to carry out anti-harassment operations… should first track US warships. If they, instead of passing by, stop for further actions, it is necessary for us to launch electronic interventions, and even send out warships, lock them by fire-control radar and fly over the US vessels.”

Washington has repeatedly expressed unwillingness to recognize China’s claims on some islands in the Spratly archipelago, where Beijing has launched massive earthworks. They are creating artificial islands and constructing two air strips capable of receiving military planes, thereby boosting Chinese military presence in the region.

“Beijing’s construction work in the area is completely legal, and there is nothing Washington can blame it for,” the Global Times said.

With most Chinese export and import operations using South China Sea routes, the region is of crucial importance to the world’s second largest economy.
Beijing has consistently expressed readiness


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