The current environment is not the first time the United States has faced a destabilizing challenge in the western Pacific. In 1937, Japanese forces in China undertook a campaign to expel U.S., British, and other Western interests from that country as part of imperial Japan’s effort to dominate East Asia. The gray-zone tactics used during the Japanese campaign of 1937–40, and the deterrence actions of the U.S. Asiatic Fleet, can help shed light on the situation in the China Sea today.
"“They Were Playing Chicken”—The U.S. Asiatic Fleet’s Gray-Zone Deterrence Campaign against Japan, 1937–40,"
Naval War College Review: Vol. 72
, Article 9.
Available at: https://digital-commons.usnwc.edu/nwc-review/vol72/iss3/9