US Shifting Military to India, Southeast Asia To Counter Chinese Army

DefenceXP Author / 23 June 2020

  • US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has cited Chinese Peoples Liberation Army's (PLA) "deadly" confrontation with India as one of the reasons for Washington recalibrating its defence commitments in Europe and looking at countering emerging threats.
  • The Chinese threat to India and Southeast Asia is one of the reasons the United States is reducing its troop presence in Europe, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Thursday in response to a question at the Brussels Forum virtual conference.
  • When asked why the US had reduced the number of troops in Germany, Pompeo said that if US troops were no longer there, it was because they were being moved to other places.
  • He said the actions of the ruling Chinese Communist Party meant there were "threats to India, threats to Vietnam, threats to Malaysia, Indonesia and the South China Sea challenge."
  • "We are going to make sure the US military is postured appropriately to meet the challenges," he said.
  • The threats from China to India and countries in Southeast Asia and the challenges in the South China Sea are going to dictate the allocation of defence resources as US cuts troop levels in Germany, he said on Thursday at a virtual meeting of the Brussels Forum of the German Marshall Fund.
  • As part of this exercise, Pompeo said it was felt that the capacity to deter Russia or other adversaries wasn’t determined any longer “by having a bunch of folks garrisoned some place”.
  • Speaking about the Chinese threat, he cited the “bloody border confrontation with India,” Beijing’s South China Sea activity and its predatory economic policies as evidence.
  • Asked whether Huawei was part of the Chinese “surveillance state,” Pompeo said Chinese security force personnel worked on the top floor of the company headquarters and Chinese law required Huawei to pass any data, including personal data, to the Chinese Communist Party whenever the latter asked. He said there was more evidence that he could not state in public.
  • China is engaged in hotly contested territorial disputes in both the South China Sea and the East China Sea. Beijing has built up and militarised many of the islands and reefs it controls in the region. Both areas are stated to be rich in minerals, oil and other natural resources and are vital to global trade.
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