American Samoa training base part of US pivot to Asia: analyst

Updated at 4:05 pm on 5 February 2013

A former analyst with a US spy agency, Wayne Madsen, says a military training site proposed for American Samoa is part of US preparations for confrontation with China.

The US Army Corps of Engineers wants to lease up to 15,000 acres of land for training army reserve soldiers in the territory.

Mr Madsen, who worked for the National Security Agency in the 1980s and is now a Washington-based investigative journalist, says with little useful land available for such training, an American Samoa base is more likely to be part of an oncoming battle with China for the region.

He likens the strategy to similar US tactics against Japan during the Second World War.

"The United States began setting up bases around the Pacific Ocean far enough away to be somewhat protected and I think that's the idea here to have the major military base in the South Pacific but also a base that's going to have a training mission and obviously this is to train not only US forces for South Pacific rim warfare but also to train the indigenous forces of several countries in the area."

Wayne Madsen says there has been a steady militarisation of US-connected territories and nations in the region.

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