by Liu Chang
BEIJING, Aug. 21 (Xinhua) -- As tensions between China and Japan over the Diaoyu Islands have been gravely heightened by Tokyo's egregious provocations, it is advisable that the United States not fan the flame in the region.
On Tuesday, Japanese forces join U.S. Marines in the western Pacific Ocean for a month-long military drill aimed at tackling the scenario of taking back islands occupied by enemy troops.
Though no country was named as the imaginary occupier, an official with the Japanese Ministry of Defense hinted that the war game is targeted at China, according to a report by Japanese newspaper Sankei Shimbun.
Given the recent flaring tensions over the Diaoyu Islands, the deliberate decision to carry out such an agitative drill serves nothing but fuels the fire, as it will aggravate the situation and jeopardize any future efforts for a peaceful settlement.
The move also gives the lie to Washington's alleged neutral stance towards the China-Japan dispute and gives birth to more suspicion over the United States' true intentions in the Asia-Pacific.
For the record, it is not the first time that the United States rats on its own words on matters concerning China's Diaoyu Islands.
U.S. State Department spokeswomen Victoria Nuland once said the Diaoyu Islands fall into a security and cooperation treaty between Washington and Tokyo. Her remarks undisguisedly indicated whose side the United States is actually on.
As a matter of fact, it was the United States who initially sowed the seeds of the China-Japan spat over the islands decades ago.
Intentionally ignoring the articles written in the Cairo Declaration and the Potsdam Proclamation, which stipulate that Japan must return all lands it usurped during the Second World War, the Nixon administration in 1971 erroneously and unilaterally transferred the administration power of the Diaoyu Islands, an undisputed part of China's territories, to Japan.
Over the years, the Chinese government has consistently denied the legitimacy of such a preposterous and ulterior decision by Washington and demanded the return of these islets.
Never considering to remedy its profound mistake, the United States, since the Obama administration came to power in 2009, has started to expand its involvement in a series of other maritime disputes between China and some southeastern Asian nations in the South China Sea.
By doing so, the United States, despite its denials, is trying to contain China's rapid emergence in the region, and at the same time sending out a clear-cut message that its self-crowned leadership in the Asia-Pacific is never allowed to be challenged.
However, if Washington takes a review of China's long history, it should not be surprised to find that the Chinese people have always been strong and steadfast enough to defend their nation's territorial integrity and sovereignty.
Thus rather than paying lip service to its commitment of not choosing side in the disputes, the United States should start to truly respect China's sovereign rights and prevent the thorny situation from spiralling out of control.
China strongly opposes Japanese rightists in Diaoyu Islands
BEIJING, Aug. 19 (Xinhua) -- China strongly opposes Japanese rightists landing on the Diaoyu Islands on Sunday, and urges Japan to put an end to its actions that seek to undermine China's territorial sovereignty, China's Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Sunday.
The illegal actions of the Japanese rightists have violated China's territorial sovereignty, and senior officials from the Foreign Ministry have lodged solemn representations to the Japanese ambassador to China, Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said in the statement. Full story
Japanese activists land on Diaoyu Islands
TOKYO, Aug. 19 (Xinhua) -- The Japanese Maritime Safety Agency confirmed that 10 Japanese activists landed on the Diaoyu Islands Sunday, local media reported.
The Japanese coast guard's patrol vessels found 10 people swam to the Diaoyu Islands from their fleet at around 7:30 Sunday, and called them to leave as soon as possible after their landing. Full story
Japanese rightists' landing on Diaoyu Islands infringes Chinese sovereignty
BEIJING, Aug. 19 (Xinhua) -- The landing on China's Diaoyu Islands by a pack of Japanese rightists on Sunday was the latest of a series of provocations that flagrantly infringed Chinese sovereignty.
The move, under the so-called excuse of "mourning war dead in World War II," blatantly harmed the long-standing and hard-won China-Japanese ties and hijacked the public opinion in Japan. Full story
China lodges solemn representations with Japan on Diaoyu Islands
BEIJING, August 18 (Xinhua) -- China on Saturday lodged solemn representations with Japan as some Japanese lawmakers and members of right-wing groups plan to go to the Diaoyu Islands waters to hold activities. Full story
China urges Japan to stop territorial sovereignty violations
BEIJING, Aug. 17 (Xinhua) -- China on Friday urged Japan to refrain from any action that might violate China's territorial sovereignty and use dialogues and negotation to solve an ongoing dispute over the Diaoyu Islands.
"The Japanese side should maintain Sino-Japanese relations through concrete action," said Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang, when talking about the recent illegal detainment and release of 14 Chinese nationals by Japan. Full story
China holds "firm stance" over Diaoyu Islands
BEIJING, Aug. 17 (Xinhua) -- China holds a "firm stance" over the Diaoyu Islands, and any of Japan's unilateral moves against Chinese nationals is illegal and invalid, the Foreign Ministry said Friday.
As Japan decided to release 14 Chinese nationals it was detaining, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said: "China holds a clear and firm stance on the issue of Diaoyu Islands." Full story