US Aircraft carrier sails in PH waters as US-China tensions escalate

US Aircraft carrier sails in PH waters as US-China tensions escalate

Amidst the tension in the disputed territories in the South China Sea, one of the largest American aircraft carriers entered Philippine waters.

This happen after US Defense Secretary Mark Esper accused China of destailizing the Indo-Pacific.

Over the weekend, Esper accused China of predatory economics, intellectual property theft and "weaponizing the global commons" -- charges which threatened to inflame already heightened tensions between the US and China as they wage an escalating trade war. 

USS Reagan (Photo credit to owner)

As the only aircraft carrier that is forward-deployed in the Indo-Pacific, the USS Reagan  will be open for tour by the Philippine press.

USS Reagan has a length longer than the Eiffel Tower of Paris, it can fit 100  jets and aircraft used for electronic warfare and anti-submarine operations.

The USS Reagan is one of 10 US Nimitz class aircraft carriers that used to be the biggest warships until the arrival of the USS Gerald Ford in 2017, which has yet to be deployed. 

“We want everyone to understand, it’s lethal," Rear Admiral Patrick Piercey said of the Reagan in 2015, when it still belonged under the Carrier Strike Group 9 that he commanded then. 
"Ultimately, this is an aircraft carrier. It is at the high end. It represents the combat power of the United States. We want anyone who will potentially challenge us to see we’re lethal, we’re ready, we’re credible" he added. 
Beijing claims all of the South China Sea using their nine dash line reasoning, Philippines, Vietnam, Taiwan, Malaysia and Brunei contest Beijing's claims to the waterway, through which $3.4 trillion of goods pass annually. 

Manila's mutual defense ally Washington is not a party to the maritime dispute, but has been calling for restraint and freedom of navigation on the South China Sea(SCS). 

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Report from ABS-CBN News

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