China's SCS claim is regrettable for me personally.
But let me ask you your frank opinion:
Which would you say is more pressing problem: US continued interference in the Middle East which directly and indirectly causes the deaths and sufferings of innocent civilians daily? Or China's claim of SCS which has so far caused... let's see: ZERO civilian death? In fact the ones who died recently are presumably Chinese citizens killed by irate Viet mobs.
Both US and China are doing these things in the pursuit of energy. Make no mistake.
To me, it is very ironic that the one you - and the rest of the world - chose to spend effort condemning is the one that has so far involved no civilians, death or otherwise.
It is not really a fair question. Again, the US has developed a dependency on assets all over the world which leaves them with decisions to make about using military force or not. And from general reading on Tank-Net, I would say a lot of members feel the US generally screwed up with its foreign policy. So it is not a case where the US is always peppered with roses. The reason why US assets ended up all over the world is for two things, business enterprise and the cold war with the Soviet Union. China has been for the most part internal. It has few assets all over so it doesn't face decision on whether or not use military force, yet.
Its too simple to say whether or not the US should stop its "interference" in the Middle East. For example, help fighting the Islamic State would be good policy IMO. The Iraq invasion of 2003 was a mistake IMO. At the time of its start, I didn't know enough to be for or against it but I felt something odd about it. Generally speaking I would prefer less US involvement. CIA in Iran or the US supporting Saddam against Iran and then quickly turning on Saddam. Purely on temporary interest and no principles. 1991 Iraq war I would agree with.
But that's besides the point. When I am talking in regards to the Asia Pacific, the SCS and Senkaku claims are causing the raise in tensions. Supposing the US causes more trouble in the ME than the SCS claim does in the Asia Pacific doesn't change the fact that the SCS is causing the raise in tensions in the Pacific. Its setting the region up for possible bad things. For why I put fourth my so much of my energy into SCS is that my thing is Asia. More specifically East Asia. It is an important region, economically, culturally, historically, and for me personally, far more interesting. It is my focus. And I think about how East Asia can pull out ahead of all the tensions and really became an outstanding region. I have said it before. That is me personally. That is where my interest lies. I leave it to others to focus on the Middle East.
The Middle East is such a mess. Even with zero US influence, the place would still be a mess. Religion plays too big a role over there for people and that is what makes them go nuts. Religion gets radicalized and either pushes itself into power or religion is hijacked and dragged into power as a tool. As a non-religious person, the place just turns me off. It only interest me because of its importance. If I was offered a free trip to vist some of the places there, I would take it. But I still rather pay money to have the chance to visit Asia places. So far, outside of Japan, I have been to Seoul, South Korea (about 6-7 days), Singapore (3 days), and a short stop a Shanghai. The flight layover was something like 22 hours long. So I stayed at the hotel at the airport. Americans need a visa to enter the country but to be able to get to the airport hotel, I needed a pass. And they gave me a 24 entry pass. So after airport and hotel sleeping time, I had about 6 free hours to spare. So I took the train into the city. With so little time, I just looked at the map for any distinguishable feature. There was the Oriental Pearl Tower icon so that is where I went. As short as it was, I enjoyed my little visit and thought it was a crime that I couldn't explore the city anymore after getting a small taste of it.
East Asian countries (except the Norks) are much more rational and can really do well if they can get over a few more hurdles I think. So I want to see the last remaining hurdles overcome. The SCS and Senkaku claims are steps backwards. I spend a lot of my energy learning about Japan's recognition of its atrocities as well. And I have a long list of things I want to read and learn still about Japan, South Korea, and China. But time is limited. I have to work and maintain my relationship, and do the god damn laundry So to label me as purely focusing on China's seemingly bad aspects is unfair and incorrect. I am not intellectually gifted with limited time and I except the risk that I might not be able to do as much as I want in regards to East Asia in my lifetime, but I figure it is worth the attempt. There is no way I can fit in the ME in depth. However I do recognize its importance and devote some time into it, enough to keep me up to speed on it.
The US developed a dependency on assets all over the world. So as something happens outside, the US faces a decision whether to use military force or not. China is mostly internal. But as the dependency grows more on foreign areas, China too will face decisions on whether or not to use military force. I wouldn't be surprised if China finds itself deploying its military in Africa within the next 10-20 years.
You are right they might if say Sudan or any other of China oil supply is threatened with US-sponsored invasion.
I was thinking something more like, if going with Sudan, the Sudanese getting fed up with a Chinese presence and start violently protesting or committing terrorist attacks which provoke a Chinese military dispatch in the name of peace and security so that China can continue extracting resources. Xinjiang and Tibet sort of serve as a prelude to it. I am only saying I wouldn't be surprised, not saying it will happen. US provocation not needed. CIA might jump in to make things worse for China in Sudan.