Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Caucus Brief: U.S. Senator Urges U.S. Action On S. China Sea Dispute

U.S. SENATOR URGES U.S. ACTION ON S. CHINA SEA DISPUTE.  Virginia Senator Jim Webb, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on East Asia, said yesterday that the U.S. should take action to make it clear it opposes use of force by China in asserting its territorial claims in the South China Sea.  Senator Webb has been joined by Senator Inhofe in introducing a Senate resolution of condemnation for Beijing's aggressive behavior in the South China Sea.  Congressional Quarterly quotes Senator Webb: "We have to send a very clear signal to the Chinese on this issue…the interests of the U.S. and those of our allies are not well-served if we don't step forward and state our concerns.  When China uses force improperly, we should stand up.  Otherwise, we have no credibility."  http://www.cq.com/doc/news-3887058?wr=U2ZyOGV0Ymg1TTFiTXVNN1FmOVRtdw   Senate Resolution Press Release.  http://inhofe.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=PressRoom.PressReleases&ContentRecord_id=8b0165b5-d57e-3e59-1b49-22bfe44d3f01&Region_id=&Issue_id=

BRINKSMANSHIP IN THE S. CHINA SEA.  A piece from Foreign Policy analyzes the policies of brinkmanship that are currently being employed by Vietnam and China in the South China Sea, as well as what role the U.S. is playing.  From the piece: "The South China Sea events demonstrate that, in a fight, China cannot rely on perceptions of its ostensible place in the new age to smooth its way out of potential confrontation."  http://oilandglory.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2011/06/13/the_brinksmanship_in_the_south_china_sea

VIETNAM HOLDS LIVE-FIRE DRILL AMID CHINA TENSIONS.  DefenseNews reports that Vietnam put on a show of military force yesterday when it conducted a live-fire naval artillery drill in the midst of an ongoing territorial dispute with China.  The drill took place about 25 miles off of Vietnam's central coast and lasted around four hours.  DefenseNews quotes a regional expert from the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore: "The exercise is designed to send China a message that Vietnam refuses to be pushed around…I think China will react very badly to this."  http://www.defensenews.com/story.php?i=6799140&c=ASI&s=TOP

CHINA RAISES BANK RESERVE REQUIREMENTS.  http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303714704576384890805560986.html

CHINA-INDIA RIVALRY TAKES SHAPE.  A piece from the Foreign Policy Research Institute analyzes the evolving strategic and economic rivalry between China and India.  The piece goes into detail on the rivalry's key issues, including, border tensions, the nuclear dynamic, and China's power projection capability.  http://www.fpri.org/enotes/201106.pant.china_india.html

ASIA'S DISAPPEARING DAUGHTERS.  A new book by Mara Hvistendahl explores the gender gap in China, "Unnatural Selection: Choosing Boys and Girls, and the Consequences of a World Full of Men," analyzes the impact of the one-child policy.  An excerpt from the book: "Lianyungang, a booming port city, has China's most extreme gender ratio for children under four: 163 boys for every 100 girls.  These numbers don't seem terribly grim, but in ten years, the skewed sex ratio will pose a colossal challenge.  By the time those children reach adulthood, their generation will have twenty-four million more men than women."  http://chinadigitaltimes.net/2011/06/asia%e2%80%99s-disappearing-daughters/

WAVE OF UNREST ROCKS CHINA.  http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304665904576383142907232726.html

CHINA'S HIGH-SPEED RAILS SLOWS.  This week, China's Railway Minister announced that the nation's flagship bullet train would travel slower than earlier reported.  China's high-speed rail project has been plagued by charges of corruption and mismanagement while the project's price tag continues to rise.  From the NYT's piece: "Some critics had charged that Mr. Liu (former PRC Railway Minister) built a high-speed-rail empire that was both too costly for average riders and marred by shoddy, quick construction that, at a minimum, might require lower speeds."  http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/14/world/asia/14china.html

INFLATION IN CHINA HITS 34-MONTH HIGH.  According to the FT, consumer inflation in China rose to its highest level in nearly three years in May, up 5.5% from a year earlier.  From the piece: "The benchmark consumer price index accelerated from 5.3% year-on-year rise recorded in April, despite government efforts to rein in liquidity and slow price rises."  http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/dda66798-9630-11e0-8256-00144feab49a.html

The Caucus Brief is a daily publication for Members of Congress and Hill Staffers on China news and information compiled by the office of Congressman Randy Forbes, Founder of the Congressional China Caucus.  Email Reed.Eckhold@mail.house.gov with tips, comments, or to subscribe/unsubscribe.

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