Despite tensions between the United States and China over the South China Sea, the two nations’ militaries train together at a very high level. Current “mil-mil” engagements are robust, with China participating in the world’s largest international maritime exercise,RIMPAC 2014, which is hosted biannually by the U.S. Pacific Command. The drills allowed China to learn a great deal about U.S. tactics, techniques and procedures (in military shorthand, “TTPs”).
But even as the United States provided China with its highest-level access to military drills, the U.S. military leadership consistently ratcheted up the level of confrontation in the South China Sea. Most recently, a top U.S. Navy admiral participated in a surveillance flight in the region. The United States is at once inching closer to armed confrontation, while at the same time training Chinese forces in the American way of war. Read more