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Air Bases, Drone Swarms & New Ports: US Military Footprint in Asia Grows, But China Grows Faster

US Expands Military Footprint in Asia, But China is Expanding Faster

– US seeks to adopt new doctrine to improve survivability of its air bases in the Pacific amid war with China;

– The doctrinal shift will take years and likely won’t be complete until after China irreversibly surpasses the US economically and militarily;

– The US is also building “civilian” infrastructure close to the Chinese island province of Taiwan, further escalating tensions between the US and China but also involving the Philippines deeper as a US proxy;

– The Philippines had been a US colony until 1946 and Washington has sought to reassert itself over Filipino sovereignty ever since, compelling Manila to make decisions that suit Washington at Manila’s expense;

– China is the Philippines’ largest trade partner, thus Manila siding with Washington against China will cost the Philippines opportunities the US cannot offer in terms of economics and development;

– A US attempt to develop drone swarms to mitigate China’s advantage in manpower and materiel ignores the fact that China’s growing advantage would also allow it to easily produce larger drone swarms of its own;


New Eastern Outlook – Washington’s Expanding Military Footprint on China’s Doorsteps:
Sputnik International – US Seeks to Divide Indo-Pacific, Use New Alliances as ‘Proxies Against China’:
Defense One – Air Force expanding number of bases in Pacific over next decade:
US Air Force – Air Force Doctrine Note 1-21, Agile Combat Employment (ACE) (August 2022):
Reuters – Exclusive: U.S military in talks to develop port in Philippines facing Taiwan (August 31, 2023):
US State Department, Office of the Historian – The Philippine-American War, 1899–1902:
CSIS, China Power – How Much Trade Transits the South China Sea?:

How Much Trade Transits the South China Sea?

VOA – US, Vietnam Highlight Elevated Relationship (September 10, 2023):
Global Times – Vietnam’s first city metro, built by China, carries 14,917 passengers per day (January 2022):
SCB – Vietnam launches freight train routes to Europe:
Defense One – ‘Hellscape’: DOD launches massive drone swarm program to counter China:

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