Things may not have come to a head yet over the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone, but over the Internet, Chinese netizens are calling on their government to take action and impose tough measures on provocative actions from Japan and the United States. The U.S. sent two unarmed B-2 bombers to fly near the disputed islands while two of Japan’s biggest airlines refused to give their flight plans to China at the request of the Japanese government.
The reaction of Tokyo and Washington on China‘s announcement over the weekend that they are implementing an air defense zone has only intensified the dislike of several Chinese citizens towards the Japanese, who are largely seen as unrepentant of their brutal militarism during World War II. Since the Chinese government has strict controls over mass protest action, a lot of netizens have taken to Sina Weibo, a Twitter-like Internet service, to express their anger towards Japan and to call on tougher measures to deal with their neighbor.
Some users have called Japan “shameless” and “thieves.” There was one suggestion to suspend all economic ties with Japan and boycott all Japanese goods. When tensions rose a year ago due to the territorial dispute over the Senkaku Islands, known as the Diaoyus in China, sales of Japanese products in Chinese markets significantly went down. Some reacted also to China’s Defense Ministry statement that they monitored the U.S. aircraft that passed through the zone and that they can “effectively manage and control” the situation. One Weibo user said that just lodging protests is not enough and the government needs to take “real actions.”
[ via Reuters ]