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Author, film researcher and member of the Swedish Military History Commission.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Next Up: Plane Duel?

One of the latest Chinese reports about the escalating conflict in the East China Sea.

Two weeks ago I wrote that "I reckon that the East China Sea holds the greatest dangers during 2013".

To my horror, things are going in that direction. Sweden, where I live, may be very distant from the East China Sea, but I do not think a degree in geopolitics, economics and military strategy (I have none of those BTW) is necessary to realize that the repercussions of even just a plane duel between China and Japan could be grave not only for the Pacific region. Such a duel now, sadly, seems quite plausible.

As is mentioned in the above linked article, the US Marine Corps detachment on Okinawa is not that far away from the centre of this dispute. As I wrote in Swedes at War there was a Swedish volunteer who took part in the final WWII battle for Okinawa. I met this gentleman, John Paul, in the 1980s and am later this year writing a book with a full chapter about his highly unusual experiences in China and in US naval service against Japan.


  1. I dont know why they fight over an uninhabited little Group of Islands? Perhaps it has to do with that each side could potentially use the islands for setting up Surface-to-air missiles and sea target missiles (Surface-to-surface) or even ballistic missiles with nuclear capability Close to each others country?

    I suggest that they start separating the concept of vindication of ownership over the islands, from the military strategic possibilities that comes from owning the islands. Why dont they agree on signing a treaty of letting the islands become a demilitarized zone? And then they can dispute the ownership over these uninhabited islands! It wouldnt be so intense then.

    Roger Klang, Lund Scaania Sverige

  2. It should say "non-ballistic robots"

    Roger Klang

  3. And it is only relevant for one of the two parties, only Japan can deploy non-ballistic robots with warheads to the other parts mainland from the Islands. Sorry for the mix-up.

    Roger Klang