Xinhua’s Special Military Commentator said that dispatching USS Chung-Hoon to South China Sea is a friendly gesture by the US DOD. It demonstrates US “hedging” strategy of both “engaging” and “deterring” China.
Xinhua said that selecting Chung-Hoon itself is a “well thought-out decision” by the US Pacific Command. First, instead of choosing a ship from the nearby Japanese Sea it chose Chung-Hoon, which was far from the incident water and needed 4 to 5 days to get there. Those 4 to 5 days gave US and China enough time for diplomatic maneuvers. Second, the ship itself has an “historical relationship” with China as it accompanied the Chinese Navy’s visit to Pearl Harbor in 2006.
Source: Xinhua, March 23, 2009