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Chinese navy chopper approaches Japanese destroyer near Okinawa

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China playing minds games with Japan. Boo!

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They should have shot it down

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They should have shot it down

Yeh, great idea. Start a war, and then have the economy collapse which means job losses ALL Around. In the end, you will suffer too thepro!

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Call in the Marines! No wait, the Air Force, no wait, Never mind their gone.

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China doing 'research' work ?! Japan must take up the matter strongly with China, same like they did with frozen gyoza !

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‘‘It feels strange that the Chinese military has taken these provocative actions before and after a summit meeting

Yeah, because the Chinese are just one great big hive mind, like the Borg.

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Maybe China is doing someone a favor to push Japan to resolve Futenma issue quickly... or maybe Japan asked China to agitate us citizens just enough to make us agree... or maybe the chopper wasn't even there...

What I am saying is that it is happening too conveniently for the time being.

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China will bully neighbors when U.S. Forces withdraw from Japan. They don't like Japan and the country totalitarian.

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If you are saying that Japan is totalitarian, I think your information about us is outdated by about 60 years... Nowadays the leaders at both sides visit each other...

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I meant China totalitalian. Sorry.

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If Japanese choppers are anything to go by, a Chinese one is not worth making a big fuss over a little thing.

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No big deal. This is international water and Russians, U.S. and China do the same thing. What is the difference?

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No big deal, international waters.. they can do what they want.

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navy chopper

Also known as "the Harley of the seas."

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Someone mentioned the Borg...Methinks Romulans (somewhat) instead;) Remember that line..."We are back". China definitely is back, and determined to show that this is their backyard.

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China taking pictures? Did the Japanese Destroyer have secret things on board in plain sight? What's the big deal? Just smile, wave, and maybe take a few pictures of the Chinese Helicopter and get on with your day.

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"No big deal"? A military helicopter less than 300 feet away? Seems very provocative. What's puzzling to me is the latest hijinks by their navy. You would think that it would in their interest to lay low so Futenma would be moved, but these latest actions work against that. Why?

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Someone should have shaken the fist at the chopper and screamed MAAAAVELICK!!

You know. China has a wide open western frontier and all kinds of nastiness pointed at it from the south, with huge potential for unrest domestically. Maybe it should just chill and pay attention to meeting the needs of its billion people.

It has grown enough that nobody needs to invade it to make a point these days. They are becoming so dependent on other people's resources that choking off a waterway here and there will throw it into chaos.

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paulinusa,

There are few things US can do for China, and China can do things like this for their favor...

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like a couple of dogs having a whiff of each other at the park...

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Who are the Japanese to criticize people for taking pictures? :)

Seriously, though... was it international waters? Yeah? then no problem. If Japan is so utterly upset and afraid by this then why all the talk about getting rid of their only real defenses?

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Very few navies would let an unauthorised aircraft approach their craft. The Chicoms wouldn't try this with Russian or U.S. ships.

The Japanese have to get used to this. It's the NWO.

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Worrying development this both in terms of it being a provocation and the fact that Japan did not react in any way. Indeed, what is the SOP regarding such incidents, wouldn't Japan at least be within its rights to light this helicopter up with a targeting radar or possibly squawk the crew with a bit of radio interference?

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This is normal behavior for military units. And it is also the normal procedure to politely lodge a diplomatic complaint. All routine.

What is really funny on the Japanese side is that Loopy Hatoyama suddenly ordered quiet around this in parliament. Again, he does not have a clue, or he has an agenda that cannot be made public.....

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Japan, take notice. China is feeling confident with the prospect that the US pays more attention to it by creating the whole concept of a G-2 (US and China). The US, ticked at how Hatoyama has been giving the finger over Okinawa, is probably having a nice chuckle right now.

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M51T: I also thought of this. OK, maybe a U.S. destoyer would have hesitated to shoot, but you can be sure they'd be at battle stations. How do you know whether there was a rogue officer on that helicopter ready to fire at your ship?

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Nothing new here. Korean ships often tests the Japanese navy's resolve in this area. Russian Strategic bombers capable of carrying nuclear weopons that can lay waste to Tokyo often violate the airspace of the area. In this case that lone Chinese chopper was no threat but rather it is at the mercy of the Japanese destroyer. In the next few years, when the Japanese navy actually runs into a Chinese carrier battle group near Okinawa.....Then they better be worry.

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Someone mentioned international waters??? I don't think so. That area is well within the exclusive economic zone of Japan. China has no business being in that area at all.

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amazing that the heli could get so close before they noticed. although shouldn't be surprised. japan didn't even notice when a missile was launched over it.

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Back in the 1980's when the Japan Economic boom/bubble was peaking, there were many stories in the media about the Japanese coming to USA and buying up stuff/buildings/property/artwork/etc. It was common for Americans to "joke" that when they saw Japanese in USA taking photographs (such as the many tourist groups travelling around), the Japanese were taking INVENTORY of what they had or soon will purchase.

Looks like the Chinese are doing a similar thing now, taking inventory of Okinawa and the surrounding area that they would like to control. THey must be really loving this Futenma move mess.

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I'll ask the question again. Why would China stir up trouble around Okinawa when the Futenma issue has yet to be resolved?

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fds - you can be sure the heli was discovered as soon as he took head towards the destroyer. Japanese helis should do the same :~) - flying so close to a big ship puts the helicopter atomatically at the mercy of that warship.

Unfortunately helicopters can not be captured without damaging them somehow...

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I'll ask the question again. Why would China stir up trouble around Okinawa when the Futenma issue has yet to be resolved?

One likely possibility is that China does not want to see Japan rearm itself. Japan does not need to rearm itself as long as the US Japan Security Treaty is still functional. It may seem counter intuitive to say that China prefers the US presence in asia to a situation where Japan charts its own course as a “normal country“, but this is a well established idea among those whose job is to think about these issues. China may well be intentionally educating Hatoyama and the DPJ about what awaits if the US leaves. It could be a wake up call to both the fluffy-headed idealists who think everything will be rosy and the closet nationalists who may be trying to create a reality where Japan has no choice but to militarize. This stuff is getting a bit too deliberately provocative to be an accident.

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The J ship crew should all be flashing large mirrors at the heli.

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One likely possibility is that China does not want to see Japan rearm itself. Japan does not need to rearm itself as long as the US Japan Security Treaty is still functional.

This is a good point. With the US out of the way, I think some countries would be rather worried about the combination of a well-armed Japan and sometimes shallow nature of Japanese democracy.

Then again, such concerns are no excuse for China to act as a bully boy.

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China is being belligerent!

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A South Korean warship explodes and sinks, possibly by a North Korean torpedo or mine. Chinese navy and airforce play games in close proximity to Okinawa. Whether you think Futenma should stay or go, you can guess how this is affecting Japanese public opinion about it. I've said before that these recent events could be Hatoyama's excuse for making an unpopular (by Okinawa standards) decision about Futenma.

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OMG, a marginally airworthy Chinese military helicopter, America save us!

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Sounds normal to me.

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Islandview is on the right track. The Chinese are taking stock of potential adversaries. If the USA were to withdraw all bases from Japan, China would only have to worry about the MSDF and ASDF in targeting strategic islands. If you were in China's position wouldn't you want forward deployed forces a healthy distance from home acting as first response/deterrent to an attacking force? In effect, this is what the US has benefited from since WWII. And so has Japan by not having to maintain a fully capable military force.

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Intimidation, bullying, finally invasion...is normal behaviour for China when its military is at "GENKI sugiru" state,throughout its history against its neighbours. Otherwise China will have problem of understanding what military force for?

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Are they trying to make some excuses to start building up their military?

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They are making many new toys. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/8548803.stm

Now they just need an excuse to play with them.

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As soon as Japan kicks out the US forces in Japan, China will come marching in. The naive people who want US forces out of Japan because they are peace loving will get a reality check.

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Black ops. It was a U.S chopper. Spooking the Japanese so they will shut up about wanting bases moved etc.

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As soon as Japan kicks out the US forces in Japan, China will come marching in. The naive people who want US forces out of Japan because they are peace loving will get a reality check.

Of course, we can't have Japan develop its own military capacity to defend itself.

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well several people have it wrong. not really sure what chinas intentions were mybe just spying, taking pictures isn't going to help them in anyway. its North korea who is mybe gonna try Bolder moves when we leave JP & SK. yeah Japan will need to build its military but then it will start an arms Race. Japan does need to protect itself. But if North Korea does something dumb it will have many countries to answer to, and many countries would respond with Military force if they have to.

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Either it was an accident or it wasn't. Either way can be played one side against the other. At any rate, either way implies both countries have a savvy military, a least likely scenario. The only conclusion to be drawn from this is that one dog veered too close to another dog's territory intentionally or otherwise.

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It was normal espionage on the high seas. It happens all the time and Japan's ships do exactly the same thing. Photos are taken and sent back to fleet intelligence where they are analyzed for any differences in superstructure or electronic gear equipped. Analyzing antenna arrays provide insight into what frequencies the ship is capable of transmitting or receiving on. New antennas would indicate new equipment has been installed. The more detailed you can get the photos, the better your evaluation of the ship can be so a helicopter 100 meters away with a normal lens is going to provide much better photos than from your ship a kilometer away with a telephoto lens.

I think the Japanese were just annoyed they couldn't send a helo of their own over to do the same thing to the Chinese vessel their helo came from.

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well i dont think China has declared war on anyone so could it be just a freindly gesture...hi guys..how are ya? enjoying the lonely sea..like my new ride , its a heli ??....

is it truly a big deal if they cross a few sea boundaries occasionally...maybe they need visas first??

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@yokyocrawler LOL!

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Don't take it personally, Chinese are not great drivers and this helicopter pilot was no exception.

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don't over react folks..that helicopter is a joke.. it should belong in a aviation museum.

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"...for shipborne anti-submarine warfare (ASW)..."

http://www.sinodefence.com/airforce/helicopter/z9c.asp

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"‘‘It feels strange that the Chinese military has taken these provocative actions ..."

It shouldn't- China has become an increasingly arrogant country.

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As I stated on another area of JT, I'll paraphrase the military implications of not having forces here:

Does China and South korea want a re-armed Japan?

Would North Korea see this opportunity (once the US was gone) to wage a war?

Would China then try to overtake Taiwan once the US left?

Does the US see this as a way of sustaining an Asian presence and keeping their Asian policy status quo?

Would Japan amend their constitution?

Would another country step up and say they want a large US presence to assist with defense and allow the US to stay in Asia?

There are a lot of scenarios that could play out. And there are a lot of questions, more than I listed. If there is a vacuum of military power in the region, one of Japan's adversaries will fill it. If anyone here thinks Japan can just be like Switzerland and vegan Cal-Berkley grads and hold hands, singing "kumbay-ya", then they really are lost. If you think China will sit by if the US left, well, you will learn Cantonese, very quickly.

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More Atago and Hyuga class shipbuilding, please.

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Of all the foolishness expressed on this topic so far, and there has been a lot of it, the winner has got to be the following variations on a theme;

smithinjapan - "If Japan is so utterly upset and afraid by this then why all the talk about getting rid of their only real defenses?"

I'd be asking the same question, if in fact there was "all the talk about getting rid of their only real defenses", except that there is no such talk. If you have been hearing such talk, I'd love to know from whom, other than drinking buddies or students.

ElJeffe - "If the USA were to withdraw all bases from Japan"

Big if, and one that nobody is talking about, or at least nobody who counts.

avenger - "As soon as Japan kicks out the US forces in Japan, China will come marching in."

"As soon as"? That's even better than Smith's. Again, where did this idea that Japan will kick out all US forces come from?

As for the "China will march in" line - it's nonsense. First off, this idea comes from the false premise that Japan is incapable of defending itself without the US, which is just that, false. Japan's military is capable of defending Japan, that's what it's for, and it is very well-equipped to do that. Look at geography, look at supply lines, use common sense - for China to attack and occupy and Japanese islands would be a huge undertaking for very little gain, and would probably fail. Secondly, China has many neighboring countries with far smaller and weaker militaries than Japan's, including some it has had shooting wars with (e.g. Vietnam), and I don't see them under threat of an imminent Chinese invasion without the safety of good ol' Uncle Sam.

the_sicilian - "If you think China will sit by if the US left, well, you will learn Cantonese, very quickly."

See my comments to avenger, but you get first prize with that one.

Get it? The discussion is about relocation of one base in Okinawa, NOT about all US forces leaving or being "kicked out". And if that were to happen, the idea that Japan would suddenly be at the mercy of China is laughable and condescending nonsense.

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kurumazaka;

One likely possibility is that China does not want to see Japan rearm itself. Japan does not need to rearm itself as long as the US Japan Security Treaty is still functional. It may seem counter intuitive to say that China prefers the US presence in asia to a situation where Japan charts its own course as a “normal country“, but this is a well established idea among those whose job is to think about these issues

Bang on and one of the few comments here with any validity to it.

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My question is what does PRC real got to gain from occupying Japan or Taiwan? Really, Japan does not have much natural resources and occupying will only result to international discord. The main buyers of Chinese products, USA and Europe will certainly boycott any products labeled made in China putting PRC in the worst recession making 2008 look like a stroll in the park. Occupation also strains the millitary since you need to station a lot of troops to maintain order within the occupied territory. Occupation and/or invasion are pre-war hegemonic ideas that simply does not fit in to present day global economy.

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It all boils down to capability and intent. We all know that China has the capability to wreak complete destruction on Japan. But does China have the intent? Hardly.

China is currently still in the earlier stages of it's economic expansion. Even with China's current status as the world's 2nd largest economy, a long road of development still lies ahead of her in terms of lifting the living standards of the vast majority of China's population. Any offensive military conflict started by China would be disasterous to her growth model. While it is true that as China's economy continues to expand, so will her territorial claims in seas that Japan along with other nations disputes. But China's leaders also know the consequences of a military escalation involving the US. It's too big a fight worth fighting for.

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The Global Times, the English daily of the party-owned People's Daily group, wrote on April 27: 'As strategic equilibrium is shifting in the west Pacific Ocean, even the slightest change can be rough for one side to take. A regular military drill by Chinese naval ships in international waters early this month caused a fuss in Japan. The Japanese media was full of hot air over the incident and tried to attach blame to China's seemingly assertive behaviour. Admitting the drill took place in international open water, the Japanese media still claimed it raised concern in Japan 'since it did not happen before'.

'A stronger navy is a result of China's growing economic strength and ongoing modernisation of its military power. It is a strategic requirement of a big power, which must defend its interests to the best of its ability. As China is assuming more responsibilities in East Asia, there will be more frequent military exercises in international waters. Beefing up China's naval forces is also necessary given the US is shifting considerable strategic defensive strength in the west Pacific. Naturally, the transformation of the Chinese navy will bring changes to the strategic pattern in East Asia and the west Pacific Ocean that has lasted for the last five decades. But the transformation is positive.

'China does not hold an intention to challenge the US in the central Pacific or engage in a military clash with Japan in close waters, though it is willing to protect its core interests at any cost. The west Pacific region is critical to world peace and stability; ensuring both requires the involvement of all major countries in the area. Neither side has a monopoly over the future of the west Pacific.

'Both the US and Japan, along with many other world powers, have aggressively expanded their maritime capabilities, but they need to adjust their viewpoint when considering China's moves. The time when dominant powers enjoyed unshared "spheres of influence" around the world is over. The purpose of China's growing navy is to provide offshore defence and to protect trade routes and Chinese citizens around the globe.'

'It is difficult to imagine China would rely on a maritime strategic system built by the US after World War II to protect its global interests today. A growing Chinese navy is a symbol of China's peaceful rise. Many countries have acknowledged that a rising China does not pose a threat to the world. If they truly mean it, they should be able to understand a growing Chinese navy.'

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One point, the PRC naval fleet ran right through the strait between Okinawa and Miyako Island to reach the Pacific. Those are not international waters.

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that heli was nothing but a souped up CH-53 meant for troop/cargo transport, yea mabye they could have a hung a big gun out the hatch and started pluggin away at the islanders, but i doubt it, This was nothing but testing on the chinese side, , and if japan would have done anythng more than follow them, it would have been terrible. China needs to respect the international sea borders, and we need to all just relax.

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The Chinese heli was most likely a licensed copy of the Eurocopter, as this version is used on most Chinese warships.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eurocopter_Panther

Either that, or it was a Russian made KA-25 Hormone, which is for anti-submarine warfare, and also equips Chinese warships.

Neither helicopters belong in a museum, but for certain, chiisaishima, you do.

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