Pentagon: Chinese Planes ‘Unsafely’ Intercept US Spy Plane

Insists US Plane Was on 'Routine Patrol' Around South China Sea

Following the growing trend of Pentagon statements condemning Russia for “unprofessional” or “unsafe” reactions to aggressive US operations in their sphere of influence, the Pentagon today accused China of “unsafely” intercepting a US spy plane in the South China Sea.

The Pentagon didn’t say where the plane was exactly, but claimed it was on “routine patrol.” The US has been sending a growing number of warplanes and warships near Chinese-claimed reefs and islands to “challenge” their claims to that territory.

China is one of nine nations with maritime claims in the South China Sea. The claims of many nations overlap. The US backs every single nation’s claims, except for China’s, and is obliged by treaty to back Philippines claims.

China has not responded to the reported “incident” today, and while the Pentagon claimed their plane had to reduce altitude to avoid a collision, it appears to just be another excuse for the Pentagon to berate a rival power.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of