Former US Pacific Commander: PH needs to be equally forceful with China

Former Commander of United States Pacific Command Dennis Blair said “Japan, the Philippines and Vietnam need to take initiatives of their own and be equally forceful in that space.”

“We have to figure out how to counter those actions. You can’t just sit there and react to what the Chinese are doing. Of course, you need to think them through carefully, but if the Chinese want to play a game of ‘I’ll poke you here, and I’ll poke you there,’ then you have to respond and say, ‘Game on’,” the retired commander said in an interview with Asahi Shimbun.

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“I think there is a similar sort of a ceiling because China knows that if a major conflict were to occur in the East China Sea or the South China Sea, the effect on China’s economic development would be terrible.”

“Foreign direct investment would cease. People would leave China. Factories would close down. Jobs would be lost. Ultimately, the regime itself might be threatened. In fact, I believe it’s hurting itself now with its current aggressive behavior,” Blair said.

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