As growing tension heats up on the disputed West Philippine Sea or South China Sea with regards to China’s coercive and “bullying” behavior throughout the region, the United States Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) has added a provision “China Sea Initiative” to the 2016 defense bill.
A bill to arm and train American allies in the Pacific. A countermeasure to what legislators claim is Beijing’s increasingly aggressive attitude in the region.
This legislation was drafted, in part, to address China’s ongoing construction of artificial islands in the South China Sea as a part of its ambitious land-reclamation campaign.
SASC Chairman Senator John McCain inserted the initiative to offer support – in the form of training and weapons – In the Philippines and other allied countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.
The new directive is designed “to provide assistance to national military or other security forces of such countries that have among their functional responsibilities maritime security missions.”
United States defense analysts said, “Arming US allies, possibly by providing fighter jets and fast attack corvette ships in the way they can handle any incoming threat or unexpected surprise attack or retaliation from China in case their unlawful reclamation stop, dismantled or targeted.”
Another thing is that there is a possibility of providing a defense network or by putting-up advance system detection, data processing, communications systems and missile defense system, meaning a missile interceptors on every strategic location.
Missile defense interceptors are a type of missile defense intended to shield a country against incoming missiles, such as intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBMs) or other short and medium-range ballistic missiles.
Defense analyst also said that, “This system will shield and protect key cities, military bases, naval ports, airports and air strips. It can be installed on a ship and on land. It is a complete integrated defense system,”
“This type of defense system is more likely than that of the iron dome of Israel.” Defense analyst added.
The new provision was accompanied by a letter from lawmakers to Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, listing their concerns about China’s behavior in the South China Sea and asking Carter to strengthen the US military’s response in the region.