Zukang cautions against hostilities over “those two tiny rocks”
Paul Joseph Watson
December 9, 2013
Former Chinese Ambassador to the United Nations Sha Zukang has warned that the dispute between Japan and China over the Senkaku Islands could lead to World War III.
Citing a Chinese-language piece written by Zukang for the the pro-regime Global Times, a report in the China Times says that Zukang warned of the futility of going to war over “those two tiny rocks,” a reference to the disputed islands which have become the center of a geopolitical tug of war between China and Japan, with the United States and South Korea also becoming embroiled.
“If China started a war with Japan, it would be much larger than both the Sino-Japanese War and World War II, said Sha. The United States and Japan should cooperate with China to maintain regional peace,” states the report.
Zukang’s rhetoric sounds somewhat alarmist but it is not that different in tone from sober analysts such as Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, who warned that the escalating crisis represents a “watershed moment for the world” and means “Asia is on the cusp of a full-blown arms race.”
Zukang was appointed by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon last year as the under-secretary-general for the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs. He also served as Chinese ambassador to the United Nations Office at Geneva.
Zukang is known as an outspoken figure who previously said the United States should “shut up” over its complaints about Beijing’s military build-up.
He sounded a more conciliatory note on the current crisis, calling for “politicians and people from both countries to sit down and talk.”
As we reported earlier, The Japanese media has also been busy dreaming up war scenarios in response to the crisis, with popular weekly news magazines envisioning a major conflict between the two superpowers, possibly as early as January.
Tensions have been running high after Beijing imposed an “air defense zone” over the disputed Senkaku Islands and hinted that it may shoot down any foreign aircraft entering the area. The U.S., Japan and South Korea quickly rendered this threat toothless by performing several overflights of the area without notifying Chinese authorities.
Yesterday, South Korea’s Defense Ministry announced that it would impose its own “air identification zone” in the region, an area which overlaps those of Japan and China, an expansion that will go into effect on December 15.