Popular appeal in looming confrontation between China and Japan
While most attention in Asia was on China's territorial claims in the South China Sea, Beijing has fired up another of its dangerous disputes.
On August 5, an unprecedented swarm of 230 Chinese fishing boats, under escort by six Chinese coast guard vessels, sailed into territorial waters claimed by Japan.
It was "a unilateral act that raises tensions" Tokyo protested to the Chinese government.
China, unrepentant, said that it was merely operating in waters that were "an integral part" of China. It has since repeated the manoeuvre on a smaller scale.
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WNU Editor: China has definitely adopted a policy of direct confrontation with its neighbours over border issues .... and they have made it very clear that they are not going to back down. In the case of Japan .... China is positioning itself to adopt a very hard line with the expectation that Japan will back down. Unfortunately... Japan has a long history of not backing down .... and they are going to face China with everything that they have. My prediction ..... I expect their boats will start ramming each other in the next year or two .... and after that .... anything is possible.