Decades of geopolitics shows failure by not acting early and decisively

Writing in the Australian, ­Liberal senator and former senior army officer Jim Molan said the South China Sea battle already lost.

* nothing short of all-out war capable of dislodging Chinese forces from a string of heavily fortified ­islands
* one week after Beijing landed a long-range strat­egic bomber on Woody Island in the South China Sea

Senator Molan, who in 2014 was appointed as chief of coalition oper­ations in Iraq, said there was no point debating whether or not the Australian navy should conduct freedom-of-navigation operations through the South China Sea — the issue had effectively been settled by the West’s inaction.

“This is the result of the inability of the West to move early on any issue, any strategic issue — Georgia, Ukraine, North Korea. Acting early is difficult and risky but the consequences for not acting early are horrendous.’

“The strategic lesson from the last few decades should be that when national power is used by anyone on the West, it should be used early and decisively,’’ he said.