Chinese and Japanese Aircrafts: Close Encounter over Disputed Islands
During Chinese-Russian maritime exercises,
Japanese aircraft entered the disputed air zone.
The Chinese and Japanese aircrafts had a close encounter
for as much as dozens of meters.
Japan and China blamed each other for the dangerous acts.
Foreign media commented that this is a dangerous escalation
over the disputed Diaoyu Islands between China and Japan.
“Japan’s defense ministry said Chinese SU-27 fighters came
as close as 50 meters (170 feet) to a Japanese OP-3C
surveillance plane near disputed islets on Saturday and within
30 meters of a YS-11EB electronic intelligence aircraft.
He also said the Chinese planes were carrying missiles."
“China’s defense ministry said jets were scrambled in the East
China Sea on Saturday after Japanese aircraft entered its air
defense zone during maritime exercises with Russia.
Japan’s defense minister accused Beijing of going “over the top" in its approach to disputed territory.
China’s defense ministry said Japanese planes had
carried out ‘dangerous’ actions," said the report.
The report also said that, “Japan scrambled combat planes
against Chinese aircraft 415 times during the year that ended
in March, up 36 percent from a year earlier," and that,
both nations’ ships also, “regularly play high-seas games
of cat and mouse around the disputed islands."
Last week, Japanese Self-Defense Forces conducted a military
exercise to retake a seized Japanese island on the uninhabited
island of Eniyabanarejima, one of the Amami Islands
in Kagoshima Prefecture.
Taiwan’s Central News Agency reported on May 23
that since the Japanese government purchased
the disputed Senkaku islands in 2012, tension between
Japan and China has intensified.
This exercise was believed to simulate the landing
on the Senkaku, also known as the Diaoyu, in the event
of military seizure by China.
Chinese Website for Sino-Japanese War Memoir editor
Jia Yuanliang believes the escalated conflict between China
and Japan reflects the closer ties between China and Russia.
Jia Yuanliang, editor of Sino-Japanese War Memoir Website:
“Because of the closer ties between China and Russia,
both Putin and Xi Jinping have talked about safeguarding
the victory of WWII at the CICA meeting by preventing
the Japanese militarist aggression from happening again.
It is actually a gesture and attitude of maintaining
international order after WW II."
The New York Times reported that, “the flybys appeared
to signal a dangerous escalation in a game of nerves"
between China and Japan over the disputed Diaoyu Islands.
The two nations’ ships, “regularly play high-seas games
of cat and mouse around the disputed islands” about once
or twice a week.
“There have also been a growing number of episodes
involving aircraft, whose greater speeds mean a higher chance
of an accident or of miscalculation quickly spiraling
out of control into a full-blown military confrontation,"
reported NY Times.
Worsening the situation is that the dialogue between
the two nations has halted since the Japanese
government purchased the disputed Islands in 2012.
Jia Yuanliang: “Based on situations such as the Diaoyu
Islands issue and the anti-Chinese riot in Vietnam,
it is hard to say that the Japanese are not involved.
The possibility of misfires is very likely along with
the development of new incidents."
“Because Japan is the only Asian nation that is widely
seen as able to match China’s military abilities, American
officials and defense analysts have increasingly warned
of the dangers of an unintended clash in the East China Sea
expanding into a wider confrontation that could drag
in the United States," added the New York Times.
In his visit to Tokyo in April, U.S. President Barack Obama
reiterated the U.S.’ commitment to defend the islands
according to the treaty with Japan.
Jia Yuanliang: “Even though the situation has evolved,
as China and Russia are now in the honeymoon period
and there are historical roots between the United States
and Japan, should there be any military confrontation,
I believe the United States will evaluate the situation
and observe first."
Both the U.S. and analysts have warned of a mid-air
collision as the one that took place in 2001, when a PLA
interceptor fighter jet collided with a U.S. intelligence aircraft.
The United States reported that the Chinese pilot Wang Wei
made dangerously close passes and finally collided with
the American flight.
Interview & Edit/QinXue Post-Production/Chen JianMing