Wednesday @ Lunch – China Rising: Storm Clouds in the Western Pacific

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The Tennessee World Affairs Council and Belmont University’s Center for International Business Present


“China Rising: Storm Clouds in the Western Pacific”

LCDR Patrick Ryan, USN (Ret)

Feb 27, 2019

12:15-1:15 pm

Belmont University, Massey College of Business

Room MC 203 | Massey Business Center

Open to all

  • Active Paid Members: Free
  • Future Members: $10.00
  • Belmont Students and Faculty: Free

“We need to do more to take interests in the sea, understand the sea, and strategically manage the sea, and continually do more to promote China’s efforts to become a maritime power.”
— Xi Jinping, President of China

“Beijing’s longstanding interest to eventually compel Taiwan’s reunification with the mainland and deter any attempt by Taiwan to declare independence has served as the primary driver for China’s military modernization. Beijing’s anticipation that foreign forces would intervene in a Taiwan scenario led the PLA to develop a range of systems to deter and deny foreign regional force projection.

“Although Beijing states that its intent is to serve as a stabilizing force regionally, in prac-tice the PLA’s actions frequently result in increased tensions. Since 2012, Beijing has routinely challenged Tokyo’s Senkaku Island claims in the East China Sea. China’s Coast Guard frequently conducts incursions into the contiguous zone surrounding the islands to further China’s claims, while its Navy operates around the claims to enforce administration. The PLA has expanded and militarized China’s outposts in the South China Sea, and China’s Coast Guard, backed by the PLAN, commonly harasses Philippine and Vietnamese ships in the region.”

— Defense Intelligence Agency – “China Military Power” 2019

“China’s force modernization has concentrated on improving the quality of its force, rather than its size. Quantities of major combatants have stayed relatively constant, but their combat capability has greatly increased as older combatants are replaced by larger, multi-mission ships. With a greater percentage of the force consisting of these modern combatants capable of blue water operations, the PLA(N) will have an increasing capability to undertake missions far from China.

“Against this back drop of increasing military capability, China’s leaders appear increasingly willing to assert China’s maritime claims, even when such actions risk exacerbating tension with China’s neighbors.”

— Office of Naval Intelligence, “The PLA Navy: New Capabilities and Missions for the 21st Century”

About Patrick W. Ryan
Patrick Ryan is founding president of the Tennessee World Affairs Council. He served 26 years in the U.S. Navy, retiring as a Lieutenant Commander in Naval Intelligence. Ryan also served as an enlisted submariner reaching the rank of Chief Petty Officer. He served aboard a guided missile cruiser based in Japan that patrolled the Western Pacific and an aircraft carrier that deployed to the region. He has visited China several times including as a University of Tennessee graduate student and as TNWAC president with a delegation of World Affairs Councils of America leaders who met with senior officials in the Foreign Ministry and other offices.
Additional Resources:

Convenient Parking Available

Park at Belmont’s Inman Center/North Garage (Directions at this Link). From Inman Garage take the Inman Building elevator to the second floor. Turn left to cross the pedestrian bridge to the Massey Business Center. Room MC 203. 

THE MISSION of the nonprofit, nonpartisan Tennessee World Affairs Council is to promote international awareness, understanding and connections to enhance the region’s global stature and to prepare Tennesseans to thrive in our increasingly complex and connected world.

THE VISION of  the Tennessee World Affairs Council is a well-informed community that thinks critically about the world and the impact of global events.   

Learn more about the Council and find how you can join, donate and volunteer at:  — 

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