Recently, I have started to follow the events that are taking place in the South China Sea. In my opinion, this situation requires more attention than we are giving it. China’s interpretation of the nine-dash line remains ambiguous, and every other player in this situation is left to guess as to what their meaning is. Strategic ambiguity is a useful tactic for China, but it is very dangerous for the United States and its allies.
In addition, United States allies, such as Taiwan, have a vested interest in the United States remaining a strong military presence in the Asian region. If the United States was to desert Taiwan, it is possible that China would invade, as Taiwan is part of China’s “One China” policy. In addition, the United States’ desertion of Taiwan could spark fear in other Asian allies such as South Korea and Japan. — it will be interesting how the US decides to define its role in the region.
Lastly, it is important to watch the Philippines’ relation with China. While they have traditionally been opposed to China’s claims, and against China’s island building policies, President Duterte’s disposition towards China is more warm than other previous leaders.
There are many other factors at play in the region, including freedom of the sea, Russia, and other Asian players, and when the outcome occurs, it will alter the entire world.