Friday, January 30, 2015

"Is China Moving to Control the Indian Ocean?"

From The Diplomat:
Is China Moving to Control the Indian Ocean?
USS Carl Vinson and the Indian navy oiler INS Shakti
Your Friday China reading:

Two fascinating pieces on China’s military strategy emerged this week. First, Abhijit Singh takes up the question of China’s naval ambitions in the Indian Ocean as part of the PacNet series hosted by CSIS. Singh points to China’s recent naval deployments in Sri Lanka as “evidence that Beijing has its sights set on dominating the Indian Ocean.” Particularly worrisome for Singh is the fact that China’s submarine did not dock with the Sri Lanka Port Authority in Colombo, but chose instead to dock “at the Colombo South Container Terminal (CSCT), a deep-water facility built, controlled and run by a Chinese company.” That and other dockings at the Chinese-built port, Singh explains, have strengthened “Indian suspicions that PLA-N assets are being allowed privileged access to Sri Lankan ports funded by Chinese investments.” Given China’s major push to invest in ports throughout Southeast and South Asia (and even Africa) as part of its Maritime Silk Road, the question of how (if at all) the PLA Navy plans to use these assets will only gain in importance....MORE
Shadow War: We Told You the Indian Ocean Would Be Hot
In our November 2010 post "India Orders Firms to "Scour the Earth" for Energy Supplies as President Obama Heads Over" I mentioned:
I have a hunch that American schoolkids today will be hearing a lot about the Indian Ocean before they graduate and might even be able to find it on a map.*...
...*I mean come on, just look at the land masses that border it:

Map of Indian Ocean
Here's the latest, from Wired's Danger Room blog...
See also:
Indian Ocean Geopolitics: China Goes to the Maldives