27 November 2013

How to Think About the Chinese Air-Defense News

James Fallows, How to Think About the Chinese Air-Defense News,” The Atlantic, 26 November 2013.

This is a strange development—China’s establishment over the weekend of an ADIZ, or Air Defense Identification Zone, in an expanded area of the East China Sea, eliciting alarmed reactions from Japan, the United States (which today sent two B-52s through the zone), South Korea, and other countries in the region. A few points to bear in mind as you follow the story…

… By acting super-tough, the Chinese military made its real situation weaker.

This ADIZ case may become the next famous example. Whether it seems, either now or later, worthwhile from the Chinese leadership’s perspective I have no idea. But at least in the short term, it appears to have alarmed the South Koreans, with whom Chinese relations had been steadily warming, plus introducing new friction into China’s most important relationship, which is with the United States. …

How Can You Learn More. This will be all over the news, but a go-to site is that of Andrew Erickson, a defense expert who is fluent in Chinese and is providing a steady flow of documents and analyses from Chinese sources.…

 For recent analysis, see Andrew S. Erickson, “Watch This Space: China’s New Air Defense Zone,” China Real Time Report (中国实时报), Wall Street Journal, 25 November 2013.

Click here for details of PLA Air Force’s first patrol in ECS ADIZ and Chinese experts’ discussion of zone’s significance.

Extensive, frequently-updated Chinese-language articles and graphics concerning the ECS ADIZ that Beijing has announced are available here.

Statements by Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel on the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone may be accessed here.

Click here for PRC Defense Spokesman’s responses to questions on Beijing’s announcement of an East China Sea ADIZ.

Official Chinese announcements and top American analysis of China and ADIZ issues is available here.