China says much of the resource-rich South China Sea is its own, and is building islands and facilities to bolster its claims.

‘Abominable’: The hidden cost of playing by China’s rules
One after another, international brands from the NBA to Dior have had to apologize for offending Chinese sensitivities. But one country’s political correctness can be another’s taboo, as the fallout from the animated film Abominable has shown. The DreamWorks co-production featuring a yeti in the Himalayas has found itself at the center of a geopolitical dispute over the vast waters of the South China Sea. Several Southeast Asian countries with competing claims with Beijing in the resource-rich waterway have pulled the film from cinemas. For companies looking to do business in the world’s second-biggest economy, this highlights the political liability of carrying the Chinese government’s off
‘Abominable’: The hidden cost of playing by China’s rules
A few pixels on a Chinese map sank ‘Abominable’ in Vietnam
An animated family film about a fluffy white yeti has been caught up in an international territorial dispute. The movie, Abominable, has been reportedly pulled from cinemas in Vietnam because of a brief scene featuring a map showing China’s disputed claims in the vast and resource-rich South China Sea.  The map offended the Vietnamese government for including the so-called “nine-dash line,” which is used by Beijing to illustrate its claims in the contested waters, Reuters reported on Monday.  Abominable, a co-production between DreamWorks Animation and Shanghai-based Pearl Studio, depicts how a Chinese girl and her friends help a yeti return to its home on Mount Everest.  The controversial
A few pixels on a Chinese map sank ‘Abominable’ in Vietnam
Once bitter rivals, US and Vietnam unite against China
Once bitter enemies, the United States and Vietnam are now increasingly united in their mutual suspicion of China’s rising clout in the South China Sea. Last month, a pilot from the Vietnam People’s Air Force became the first in his country to complete the Aviation Leadership Program at Columbus Air Force Base in Mississippi.  The program provides 52 weeks of flight training to pilots from US partner and developing countries. Captain Dang Duc Toai’s graduation was hailed as the fruit of a partnership between the US and Vietnam that helps “ensure peace and stability in the region and in the world,” according to Lieutenant General Steve Kwast, commander of air education and training command in
Once bitter rivals, US and Vietnam unite against China
Risk of South China Sea clashes rises as Beijing blurs lines
More flashpoints are likely to occur in the South China Sea as China strengthens its presence with ships that blur the lines between military and civilian operations, experts warn. Beijing lays claim to almost all of the South China Sea, including islands that sit amid rich fishing grounds and which are believed to be sitting on big oil and gas deposits. China’s claims put it at odds with Taiwan, Vietnam, Brunei, Malaysia and the Philippines. While China’s military activities have been under intense scrutiny over the past years, Beijing has been steadily increasing its non-military presence in the region. A recent incident in which up to 275 Chinese vessels were spotted near the Philippine-o
Risk of South China Sea clashes rises as Beijing blurs lines
Duterte touts ‘suicide mission’ after Chinese sail near disputed island
The Philippines says it will prepare for a “suicide mission” if Beijing ever touches an island claimed by both countries in the South China Sea. President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday called on Beijing to leave alone the island of Thitu, known as Pagasa in Filipino, in a strong protest against a growing Chinese presence in the disputed waters. “I will not plead or beg, but I am just telling you that lay off the Pagasa because I have soldiers there. If you touch it, that’s a different story. I will tell the soldiers ‘prepare for suicide mission’,” Duterte said in a speech, according to Reuters. Duterte made the speech after the Philippines’ foreign ministry accused China of violating its sove
Duterte touts ‘suicide mission’ after Chinese sail near disputed island
China already has escalation dominance
China has the ability to control the South China Sea because it has established escalation dominance in that area. Let’s go through some basic numbers. China now has the world’s largest navy, which has more than 300 ships. If you want to be able to conduct sea control in a region, having a big navy is a valuable part of that. China is able to focus the attention of that navy on near seas to an extent that its competitors like the US cannot. The US has a global responsibility, a global navy, whereas China has the luxury of focusing more of its attention on the near seas, including the South China Sea. Arguably, despite China’s assertions about its far seas aspirations, their navy is really fo
China already has escalation dominance
Can China control the South China Sea?
The South China Sea is a vast, resource-rich body of water that is made up of over 250 islands, reefs and shoals. China claims about 90% of the contested waters, arguing it has historical rights in the region thanks to its “nine-dash line.” Other Asian countries, including Vietnam, the Philippines, Brunei and Malaysia, have competing claims in the area. Even though the US has no territorial claims in the South China Sea, it sees the waters of as an area of strategic interest, since they are a crucial trade route. Chinese dominance in the seas will threaten America’s position in Asia. In past years, China has become increasingly assertive over the South China Sea, building artificial islands
Can China control the South China Sea?
5 things to look for from Xi Jinping’s Philippines trip
Xi Jinping’s time at the Apec summit may not have ended as he’d have liked, but the Chinese president isn’t looking back. A two-day state visit by President Xi to the Philippines starts on Tuesday, as relations between the two countries continue to thaw following years of tensions over their competing claims to the South China Sea. It is the first visit to the archipelagic country by a Chinese head of state in 13 years, and it comes with usual trappings – a welcome ceremony, a state banquet and a number of agreements to be signed. The trip is also the final leg of Xi’s diplomatic tour of the Pacific, part of a drive to expand Chinese influence. Here are the five results to look for from the
5 things to look for from Xi Jinping’s Philippines trip
When a Chinese and a US warship almost collided
A Chinese warship warned a US Navy vessel in the South China Sea it would “suffer consequences” if it did not change course, internal military documents show, as new details and never-before-seen footage emerge of last month’s near collision in the disputed waters. The Chinese Luyang destroyer issued the stern verbal message to the USS Decatur before sailing within 45 yards of the vessel in the September 30 incident that Washington labeled “unsafe and unprofessional,” according to a timeline obtained from Britain’s Ministry of Defence. “You are on [sic] dangerous course,” the Chinese ship warned, according to the document obtained by the South China Morning Post via a freedom of information
When a Chinese and a US warship almost collided
From small talk to near miss, US-China tension heats up at sea
To understand how much things have gone south between the United States and China in the South China Sea, it’s helpful to remember the time when the navies of the two countries exchanged pleasantries just a few years ago. Once, the crew on the guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen chatted up their Chinese counterparts to tell them about their weekend plans (“pizza and wings”). Chinese sailors responded by talking about where they were from and their families, Robert Francis, commanding officer of the USS Lassen, recalled to reporters in 2015. Even when the USS Lassen came near one of China’s artificial islands, what it got from the Chinese side then were at most stern and persistent warnings t
From small talk to near miss, US-China tension heats up at sea