The state media, the International Herald Leader, published a commentary in response to a statement that the U.S. State Department issued on August 3, 2012, regarding the South China Sea. The commentary accused the U.S. of attempting to sow discord in the region. “We are clear that the U.S. statement on the South China Sea sends out two messages: The first is to tell the Philippines and Vietnam that the U.S. is their back up and that they should not be afraid of confronting China; the second is to tell the ASEAN countries that, on the South China Sea issue, the U.S. has publicly come forward to speak out for them and that these countries should not hesitate; they should join together to face China without any fears or concerns about China."
The commentary further stated that the U.S. will very likely issue threats specific to those companies that may be interested in submitting bids to the state’s China National Petroleum Corporation for exploration in the South China Sea.
Source: International Herald Leader, August 17, 2012