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This post was edited by abramicus at 2012-10-22 13:15|
This statement needs further analysis.
Okada also said, "Although Japan and China do not have any existing sovereign territorial problems, but their having a dispute is also an existing reality. Both sides should use bilateral talks to defuse the current situation."
Does Japan want China to also say that its sovereignty over Diaoyudao is not a problem, just as Japan has been saying, and therefore, return to the Deng era detente where both sides say their own thing about their sovereignty?
On the other hand, since Japan has already "nationalized" Diaoyudao by an act of the Cabinet, China has no choice but to dispute Japan's claim of sovereignty? And therefore, Okada criticized Ishihara as the cause of the "nationalization" claiming that since Ishihara is acting as a local governor of Tokyo, and has no responsiblity for Japan's foreign affairs, he would be unqualified to "buy" Diaoyu, which has important diplomatic repercussions for Sino-Japanese ties. But this does not reduce the even worse impact of Noda's government officially "nationalizing" Diaoyudao in the face of strong and persistent protests by the Chinese government. Thus, the responsibility for the dispute cannot reside solely in Ishihara, but must be attributed to the Noda government as well.
If a port or lighthouse were established by Ishihara, it would have been a local event, even though it would have provoked China's intervention nevertheless. If Diaoyu were "nationalized" by Noda, it would have been a national and international event, and it would even more surely provoke China's intervention, which we have all witnessed, included daily marine surveillance patrols around Diaoyudao.
Thus, to address the "recognized dispute with China" over the sovereignty of Diaoyudao, a return to the status quo ante is necessary, and what is the status quo ante needs to be defined, and the means to its attainment determined.
The status quo ante is obviously the status quo before Japan's 9/11 "nationalization" of Diaoyudao. Before that, the Japanese Coast Guard had avoided showing up on the island except to remove any civilian from either Japan or China found on the island. Even this was a concession by China, because police action by Japan on Chinese sovereign soil is inconsistent with China's claim of sovereignty. Will China agree to this inconsistency, now that Japan has opened the question, and attempted to use it as a pretext to conclude that since Japan has exercised continuous jurisdiction (police power) over Diaoyudao, China has no real sovereignty over the island? Or, should China have the right to close this inconsistency because Japan tried to take advantage of it, and have it now in writing that Japan has neither the jurisdiction nor the sovereignty over Diaoyudao? If so, China has to have a presence on Diaoyudao, which is the definition of effiective jurisdiction, and cannot merely have a paper claim to its sovereignty.
How to resolve this question of physical presence of Chinese officials on Diaoyudao is hard to figure out, without a physical fight with the Japanese policemen or coast guard on the island.
One solution is that of bilateral simultaneous presence of their Foreign Ministers on the island to hold talks every once a year, and to have no other offiicials on either side landing on the island, plus each side banning their own civilians from landing on the island which they are responsible for removing in less than 12 hours.
Another solution is that of each side taking turns in being stationed on the island every six months, but with the waters around them open to fishing by citizens of both countries, including Taiwan, without restrictions except on a mutually agreed period of rest for the marine life to reproduce each year.
None of these will be palatable to Japan, least of all its rightwing elements, but the consequence of their action is an irreversible change in the equilibrium that can exist between China and Japan. This is a fact of life. Their insistence on "nationalization" of Diaoyudao over and against the objections of the Chinese government has irreversibly changed the question of sovereignty over Diaoyudao. There is no way back to the same equilibrium, even though there is a way back to a different equilibrium, as outlined above. This time, the equilibrium is more physical, more political, and more militaristic, in nature. At the same time, its maintenance forces both countries to be even more cordial and more patient with each other. This is all that can be achieved.
It is not, however, the optimal solution for China, to whom Diaoyudao actually belongs by historical right, and by international treaty, chief which is the Instrument of Surrender of the Japanese Empire, signed by Japan, on September 2, 1945.
China has no reason to allow Diaoyudao to remain partly or even temporarily under the illegal occupation of Japan for any period of time. This alone is an insult and injury to its sovereignty, like no country in the world has ever to endure. Therefore, while a new equilibrium in favor of peace is possible, a real solution to China's sovereignty being invaded by Japan does not, short of Japanese surrender peacefully, or China's victory militarily. This "real" solution will forever dog the peace of both countries, even if an new entente is acheived by both sides to defer the issue to another time. It may be best for China to just occupy Diaoyudao, come hell or high water, because that is its sovereign right, and be done with this pestering question that deserves no further debate if only the international community were fair and faithful to its own treaties and norms of conduct.