I think (hope) a war with China is extremely unlikely. It would no doubt be devastating to both nations.
Beijing warns US: 'We will fight back' as battle of words escalates over South China Sea - Asia - World - The Independent
China has upped its military posturing, issuing a strategy paper saying Beijing would “surely counterattack if attacked” by an enemy amid concerns from the US and neighbouring countries over its developments in the South China Sea. The release of the document came shortly after Beijing lodged a complaint against the US for flying a surveillance jet over disputed territory in the South China Sea, where China is building artificial islands. Chinese state media reported that the white paper, issued by the state council, the country’s cabinet, underscored that Beijing was committed to world peace and believed that a world war was unlikely. But it added that “small-scale wars, conflicts and crises are recurrent in some regions”. The state-owned news agency Xinhua highlighted one particular phrase, which appeared in the “Strategic Guideline of Active Defence” section: “We will not attack unless attacked, but we will surely counterattack if attacked.”
Much to the concern of its neighbours and the US, China, the dominant powerhouse in the region, has been building artificial islands and buildings in the disputed South China Sea, where the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan all have overlapping claims. In one area, the Spratly islands, the US says China has created 2,000 acres of land, with satellite images showing what appears to be an airstrip. The paper said that China’s armed forces would work to “resolutely safeguard China’s sovereignty [and] security and development interests” and work towards “realising the Chinese dream of achieving the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation”. Announcing its release, the People’s Liberation Army spokesman Yang Yujun appeared to be referring to the US when he said that “outside powers” were attempting to “tarnish the Chinese military’s reputation and create an atmosphere of exaggerated tension.” He added: “We cannot eliminate the possibility that this is to create excuses for the actions that certain countries may be planning to take.”