(June 10, 2012) WMR's Asian intelligence sources report another, more ominous, aspect to the decision of Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta to move 60 percent of U.S. naval forces to the Pacific region.
Panetta announced in a speech at the Shangri-La Dialogue defense conference in Singapore that most of the Navy's littoral combat ships, submarines, cruisers, and destroyers will be deployed in the Pacific. In addition, new U.S. Marine bases are being established in Australia.
Panetta, according to our sources, has also been negotiating with leaders of Singapore, India, the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Cambodia, and Thailand the establishment of new U.S. military bases or the re-opening of former bases from the Cold War era. The latter include Subic Bay in the Philippines, U-Tapao airbase in Thailand, and Cam Ranh Bay in Vietnam.
The United States has plans to build new bases in Darwin, Perth, the Cocos (Keeling) Islands, and Sihanoukville in Cambodia. The United States' "Compact of Free Association" with the Republic of Palau gives Washington the right to establish military bases in that southern Pacific nation, an option that the Pentagon appears to be close to invoking.