The Air Force’s top Pacific Commander said China’s behavior in the Pacific is both provocative and cooperative regarding its military posture and stance on disputed territories in the region.
“I think the territorial disputes and the way they are being handled are things we have concern over. At the same time, they are engaging. There are other cases where they are engaged and handle things in a more appropriate way,” Gen. Herbert Carlisle, Air Force Pacific Commander, said May 5 at an event at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Washington, D.C.
Regarding concerns about China’s assertive or aggressive posture in the region, Carlisle mentioned their rapid military buildup to include the construction of an aircraft carrier. He also added that the Chinese Navy was venturing much farther off the coast for operations than it has in prior years.
“Some of the exercises they have done have gone significantly farther out. They’ve continued to expand their ability to operate farther and farther away,” Carlisle added.
Alongside his expressions of concern regarding China’s behavior in the region, Carlisle also praised China for its increased engagement and cooperation with the West.