The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

The U.S. Points the Finger at China over Incidents on China’s Doorstep

Jun 12, 2023

U.S. military officials have carried out a publicity campaign through the corporate media over two recent confrontations with China in the South China Sea. On May 26, a Chinese fighter jet flew directly across the path of a U.S. Air Force reconnaissance plane. Then on June 3 a Chinese navy ship crossed within 150 yards of a U.S. Navy destroyer. Following both incidents, U.S. officials called the actions "unnecessarily aggressive" and "unprofessional" and released videos that were widely broadcast and circulated by the media.

No one, however, mentioned that when the plane incident occurred, the U.S. plane just happened to be flying over a routine naval exercise involving Chinese aircraft carriers. The U.S. plane carried equipment enabling it to intercept electronic Chinese signals and possibly intercept Chinese intelligence. Nor did they point out that the confrontation between the ships occurred on the very same day that the U.S. defense secretary, Lloyd Austin, and China’s defense minister were in Singapore for an annual defense conference.

Both these incidents occurred in the South China Sea off the coast of mainland China. The Chinese defense minister, Li Shangu, asked, "Why did all these incidents happen in areas near China, not near other countries? ... They are not here for innocent passage. They are here for provocation."

That certainly seems to be the case. Just imagine how the U.S. might respond if a Chinese plane spied on U.S. naval exercises or a Chinese navy ship roamed around off the coast of Florida or California. We already know how they reacted when a Chinese balloon floated into U.S. territory!

These incidents are taking place at the same times the U.S. is attempting to put the economic squeeze on China and is using the war in Ukraine to go after Russia. U.S. history is filled with wars starting over trumped-up “incidents,” like the Gulf of Tonkin incident that led to the Vietnam War, or Saddam Hussein being coaxed into invading Kuwait before the first Persian Gulf War.

Who knows when the U.S. might use another incident such as these to be the pretext for starting the next world war?