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Robert Johnson|Oct.  4, 2012,  9:43 PM|4,209|31
washington aircraft carrier

Photographer’s  Mate 3rd Class Summer M. Anderson

USS George Washington

The USS George Washington and the USS  John C. Stennisaircraft carrier strike groups (CSGs), a flotilla of five  ships and more than 10,000 Navy personnel are now operating in the conflict  ridden South China Sea area.

The news was announced by  the Navy a few days ago, but is now making the rounds in Asian media  outlets, and generating as much speculation as it is concern.

The Washington will be operating in the East China Sea near the disputed  Diaoyutai islands controlled by Japan, but claimed by both Taiwan and China.

The Stennis will be operating south of the Diaoyutai’s in the South China  Sea, where territorial disputes between China and its regional neighbors have  been making  headlines for months.

There is speculation that the carrier assignments could just  be coincidence, and while that’s possible it’s just as likely that the U.S.  is doing it’s part to fulfill three separate treaty obligations to allies in the  region.

Ralph  Jennings at The Christian Science Monitor points out that the U.S. is  “obligated by security pacts or acts of Congress to help defend Japan,  Taiwan, and the Philippines – all located off the east coast of rising military  power and US cold-war rival China.”

In addition to the carrier groups, and two air wings comprising about 120  aircraft, Focus  Taiwan reports the amphibious assault ship the USS  Bonhomme Richard and two escorts are operating in the nearby Philippine  Sea.

Whether the U.S. is looking to reassure Japan, keep China in check, or simply  rotating ships around a new schedule, there’s little doubt many are taking  consolation in the fact that the U.S. generally deploys three  carriers to a region when planning for war

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One thought on “Two Carrier Groups Are Now Operating In The China Sea

  1. Read about the disputed islands in the china sea. Opinion: U.S. sabre rattling over absolutely nothing to start,or try to,yet another conflict which they can ill afford to do.Under the current banking system China can break the U.S.Fed with the stroke of a pen.Not a very smart idea to step from the pan into the fire. Rgds Arth.