There is no secret that China is actively pursuing accelerated military buildup and becoming increasingly aggressive around its borders. Here are just a few indicators that were observed recently by the rest of the world.
- Definite acceleration of offensive air and missile developments
- A growing arsenal of ballistic and cruise missiles, including anti-ship missiles and advanced radar-evading stealth combat aircraft
- Pursuit of counterspace and cyber capabilities that can be used to disrupt US military operations
- A flare-up in territorial spats with Japan, the Philippines and Vietnam and strained relations with South Korea (all of which have turned to Washington for support)
China also purchased its first aircraft carrier (a refurbished Russian ship) and towed it from Ukraine. The Varyag, a Kuznetsov-class carrier, was originally built for the Soviet navy, but construction was interrupted by the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. The initial sea trial will start in July. The increased activity was observed aboard the ship in recent days. The ship will be formally launched next year on October 1, China’s national day, after workers complete the installation of weapons systems and other equipment.
This is likely to further worry neighbors amid heightened tensions over territorial disputes.