This is no coincidence. Secretary of Defense James Mattis meets with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe a week ago, and China makes a move that is clearly aimed at President Trump.
From Fox News:
Three Chinese warships sailed near the contested Senkaku Islands Monday, in a rare move apparently sending a message to the U.S. just two days after President Trump’s defense secretary visited Japan and vowed to defend the islands.
The ships sailed within Japan’s territorial waters some 12 nautical miles off the islands in the East China Sea, roughly 140 miles northeast of Taiwan, a U.S. defense official told Fox News.
On his first overseas trip as defense secretary, Jim Mattis, speaking in Tokyo, said China “has shredded the trust” of countries in the region by building up man-made islands in the South China Sea. He also said the U.S. commitment to protect Japanese territory applied to its islands in the East China Sea.
Interestingly, this morning I wrote about how Democrats were going to try and make Steve Bannon into Karl Rove but wouldn’t succeed, largely because Bannon is not a very public figure. That said, I also argued Bannon could be dangerous because he does have a lot of influence with Trump.
So this action by China, combine with this story:
Bannon, now on the NSC, predicts war with China rather soon, eg SCS conflict resulting in war. Seems important.https://t.co/7WJVZ1GHjE
— John Schindler (@20committee) February 1, 2017
Combine this with China’s other aggressive moves, and it’s…unsettling:
China has flown nuclear-capable bombers around other contested islands, including the Spratly Islands, six times this year. The latest flight took place on Sunday, according to the official.
In late November, China flew a pair of nuclear-capable bombers around Taiwan for the first time.
Days later the Taiwanese president called then-President-elect Donald Trump to congratulate him on his election win. The call broke a decades-long “one-China” protocol with American leaders communicating directly with Beijing only.
Japan scrambled eight F-15 fighter jets to intercept the Chinese flight while it was circumnavigating Taiwan, according to officials.
In recent years, China has constructed seven artificial islands in the South China Sea and has placed runways on three of them. In recent months, China has added military fortifications to protect the islands.