Nairobi, Kenya -- Chinese archeologists are busy here in Kenya. They are working in the waters surrounding the Lamu archipelago on Kenya's north coast. Their goal is to find evidence of Chinese trade with Africa in the 1400s. Demonstrating such a link would show the world that China was here as a commercial and military power before the Europeans arrived. The fact that the 15th Century Chinese missions were conducted by Admiral Zheng's formidable "Treasure Fleet" is all the more important to the Chinese. As it seeks to rule the seas once again, China desires tangible symbols of its past as a naval power. Finding a sunken Chinese ship or coins in Kenyan waters would be powerful in this regard.
It was good to see that Admiral Roughead was in Australia this week meeting with America’s closest war-fighting ally over the past century. As he was there to reassure our Pacific partner, Roughead projected confidence by noting that the Chinese aircraft carrier threat in the Pacific would take years to develop as carrier operational skills are not learned overnight.