Chinese (top) and Japanese ships steam side by side near islands called Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China, in the East China Sea. Chinese patrol boats have been menacing the Japanese coast guard in an unusually relentless and escalating response to their latest maritime spat. Beijing says the ships from its marine surveillance service are merely defending Chinese sovereignty. (Associated Press)

Chinese (top) and Japanese ships steam side by side near islands called Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China, in the East China Sea. Chinese patrol boats have been menacing the Japanese coast guard in an unusually relentless and escalating response to their latest maritime spat. Beijing says the ships from its marine surveillance service are merely defending Chinese sovereignty. (Associated Press)