THE JAPANESE DEFENSE WHITE PAPER: A COMMENT
"China has now become an influential country both politically and economically, and its military developments also draw attention from other countries. Accordingly, China is strongly expected to recognize its responsibility as a major power, accept and stick to the international norms, and play a more active and cooperative role in regional and global issues. On the other hand, China has been engaging in extensive, rapid modernization of its military forces, backed by continual substantial increases in its defense budget. China has not clarified the current status and future vision of its military modernization initiatives, while its decision-making process in military and security affairs is not sufficiently transparent: Hence it has been pointed out that this could potentially lead to a sense of distrust and misunderstanding by other countries. Furthermore, China has been rapidly expanding and intensifying its maritime activities. In particular, in the waters and airspace around Japan, it has engaged in dangerous acts that could give rise to a contingency situation, such as Chinese naval vessel’s direction of its fire-control radar at a JMSDF destroyer in January this year. In addition, Chinese aircraft and surveillance ships affiliated to China's maritime law enforcement agencies have intruded into Japanese territorial waters and airspace. Coupled with the lack of transparency in its military and security affairs, these moves by China are a matter of concern for Japan and other countries in the region and the international community. Therefore, Japan needs to pay utmost attention to China’s movements. This is why China is asked to further improve transparency regarding its military and why further strengthening of mutual understanding and trust by promoting dialogue and exchanges with China is an important issue. At the same time, while a substantial reshuffle in the Chinese Communist Party leadership has taken place, resulting in the establishment of the Xi Jinping regime, the environment surrounding the next administration is certainly not rosy, due to its various domestic problems. Thus, the question of how it will deal with the challenges it faces will be the focus of attention".Ministry of Defense (Japan). Defense of Japan, 2013. Translation, p. 4. Accessed 12 July 2013, in www.mod.go.jp/e/publ/w_paper/2013.html "
BEIJING, June 26 (Xinhua) -- A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman slammed an overview of Japan's Defense Ministry's white paper for 2013, urging the country to conduct some introspection and do more to facilitate regional peace and stability. "China adheres to a road of peaceful development and pursues a national defense policy with a defensive nature," spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a regular press conference, adding that China is transparent in its military's strategic intent and poses no threat to any country. China's national defense development is aimed solely at maintaining national sovereignty, territorial integrity, and peace and stability in the region and the world at large, Hua noted. Owing to historical factors, Japan's military development, however, has received great attention from neighboring Asian countries, she said. "The Japanese side has been advocating the 'China threat' and deliberately creating tensions in recent years," Hua said, highlighting the international community's concerns about Japan's continuous arms expansion and frequent military drills. "We hope the Japanese side could follow the historical trend, seriously re-examine itself, take a deep look at its history of aggression and do more to facilitate the preservation of regional peace and stability," Hua said. She also reiterated that China would not change its position and determination on the issue of the Diaoyu Islands, and that it will continue to adopt measures necessary to maintain its sovereignty over the islands. "We hope the Japanese side will cease any provocative words as well as actions and make substantial efforts to help manage and resolve the issue through dialogue and consultation," Hua added. According to Japan's Kyodo News, an overview of the Japanese Defense Ministry's white paper for 2013 released on Tuesday said that a lack of transparency in Chinese military and security affairs is "a concern" for the region and the international community. In the summary, the ministry also considered it important to highlight the capabilities of the Self-Defense Forces (SDF) in dispatching troops to remote areas and conducting joint drills with the U.S. military to prepare the SDF for recapturing any control it has lost over remote islands. The latest annual paper, a summary of which was presented at a meeting of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, is expected to be approved by the Cabinet of Japan soon"."China slams Japan's new defense white paper". Xianhuanet. 26 June 2013, in www.news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/htm The accuracy and cogency of Japan's Defense White Paper can be readily seen by the official and semi-official Chinese comments on the same 1. The fact is that the Japanese White Paper accurately describes the dangers presented by the regime in Peking. Left to itself, the Peoples Republic will inevitably endeavor to expand its self-proclaimed off-shore sovereignty zone at the expense of its neighbors in the Orient. Make no mistake: in its current incarnation, the PRC is hardly another Sovietskaya Vlast or Third Reich. What is endeavoring to do is to employ its current military build-up and its perceived economic wealth and power to intimidate its (mostly peaceful) neighbors: from Japan to India. This situation can only be peacefully dealt with by a determined Western military and (more importantly) diplomatic response. Forcefully indicating to the regime in Peking that attempts to change unilaterally its borders vis-`a-vis its neighbors will resisted. If need be by the justified use of force. Since it is Peking and no other power who is endeavoring to unilaterally change the status quo ante bellum in the Far East. 1. In addition to the comments in Xianhuanet, see also: Jonathan Soble, "Japan criticises China over maritime disputes in white paper." The Financial Times. 9 July 2013, in www.ft.com.