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Thread: China threatens U.S. Congress for crossing its ‘red line’ on Taiwan

  1. #166
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    maybe the Chinese came up with a suitable answer to Trump's pressure tactic. More cooperation from them with NK


    Trump should be happy with that
    It was always an idiotic idea to let Congress critters direct the minutiae of specific military operational actions.

  2. #167
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    If it was a ruse it worked : D

    What exactly, that is, will have to be seen

  3. #168
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    ASEAN heads gather in India for republic day. This is an attempt to breathe more life and cohesion into that org if it has any left. Another talk shop, the East Asia summit has the same problem. Both are lacking in fresh ideas and a new vision for the region. Its as if they have run their course, promoting political and economical cooperation between countries in the region regardless of whether free or authoritarian. Quad is another attempt at trying to find new ideas. China is moving in and we see alignments happening. Some align with China others with the freer alternative. Alignment is the key word here. Alliance is not. Existing alliances are rigid and will not change much and only come into play when its too late, not useful at more than just military preventative measures that could occur many steps earlier. Alignments are fluid and larger in scope. A meeting of the like minded. Alignment does not need to be competitive, can also be complimentary

    The problem is a trust deficit between countries and China. What are China's longer term intentions for the area. China has provided arms to numerous countries and had exercises with Singapore & Malaysia

    India too has a history of providing support & arms to the area

    Reviving an old friendship
    If the armies of undivided India helped liberate South East Asia from Japanese occupation, Nehru led the region’s resistance to the return of European powers to their former colonial possessions. Security cooperation with the newly independent nations of the region emerged as one of the important elements of independent India’s Asian policy. When Burma’s government led by U Nu was threatened by an insurrection led by communists and ethnic rebels in 1949, Nehru organised diplomatic, financial and military support for Rangoon. He also extended similar support for Jakarta in consolidating its internal security.

    Nehru also responded to requests from Burma and Indonesia for formal security cooperation agreements by signing peace and friendship treaties with them in 1951. Rangoon and Jakarta also signed a similar treaty between themselves. With Indonesia, India followed up with separate agreements for military cooperation between their respective armies, navies and air forces. The focus was on high-level military exchanges, cross-attachment of officers, training, supply of equipment, and the grant of Indian loans to facilitate this.

    The idea of solidarity with South East Asia was the theme at the very first Republic Day in 1950. The special guest then was Sukarno, the charismatic leader of newly liberated Indonesia.

    In the 1950s, Nehru saw the importance of India lending security support for South East Asia and could respond quickly to the demands from the region. Although Delhi’s declaratory commitment to security cooperation with the ASEAN has grown under the Look East and Act East policies, and its military capabilities have become considerable, the Indian defence establishment has been disappointing in its delivery. This has little do with the ASEAN, but the general absence of an effective institutional framework in Delhi to conduct defence diplomacy with India’s international partners. While correcting this structural fault in the Ministry of Defence might take a while, Delhi could begin this week by announcing a new and specific framework for deepening the defence partnership with the ASEAN.

    This interesting story about political and security cooperation between the three countries, however, begins to fade in the 1960s as multiple differences cooled the special relations between them. More broadly, India turned away from the region just as it began to integrate itself under the banner of the ASEAN.
    It surprises me to learn that in the 60's, the region that makes up ASEAN or SE Asia was referred to as the Balkans of Orient. Burma, Malaysia, Borneo, Vietnam, Philippines & Indonesia. Balkans is the bridge between Europe and Russia. Also between Asia & Europe. Black sea to Mediterranean. Crossing area of land and sea. Likewise SE Asia joins two oceans and continents and is the meeting point of two cultural realms, Chinese & Indian. These two regions are cultural & political fault zones between two greater entities. Geographically fragmented into peninsulas and islands with scattered populations not amenable to any unification. Being meeting areas both Balkans and SE Asia have alien cultural influences and foreign conquest. Their location is important as they contain choke points where free and fair transit matters

    So starting from that point and arriving today marks an achievement these two orgs can be proud of. ASEAN benefited from the larger security umbrella underwritten by the US in East Asia.

  4. #169
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Interesting development

    France and Japan to scale up military exercises to deter China | Nikkei Asian Review | Jan 25 2018


    January 25, 2018 6:24 pm JST
    France and Japan to scale up military exercises to deter China
    Defense Minister Parly denounces "fait accompli politics" in South China Sea

    TALLULAH LUTKIN and TOGO SHIRAISHI, Nikkei staff writers

    PARIS -- France intends to increase joint military exercises with Japan, French Defense Minister Florence Parly has told the Nikkei Asian Review, showing her aim to deter China in the South China Sea.

    France's Defense and Foreign Affairs ministers are set to travel to Japan for a meeting with their counterparts on Friday.

    In an interview, Parly said her government was ready to "develop joint military exercises between France and Japan" in the Indo-Pacific region, with a view to displaying their presence in the region, particularly to China.

    Parly would like to see naval troops from the two countries take part in joint bilateral and multinational exercises, including amphibian training, this year in various locations around the region.

    France and Japan have previously conducted multiple smaller exercises in the area over the years, but now appear ready to scale up operations. A large multinational naval exercise was carried out last year with the U.S. and the U.K.

    Such exercises are a "symbol of our cooperation in terms of defense policy," said the minister, and show that both countries are committed to ensuring the region's waterways remain "free and open." She also stressed that they are conducted so forces can get used to working together efficiently should the need for a joint intervention ever arise.

    "Just because you plant your flag somewhere doesn't mean that territory changes hands," she said in relation to China's "fait accompli politics" in the South China Sea. France has already denounced unilateral actions such as the construction of outposts in the region as a violation of international law.

    French navy ships are due to sail through the South China Sea this year to show that "the right to free passage is one we want to exercise fully," she said, in a similar move to U.S. freedom of navigation operations.

    French ships already pass through the area three to four times a year, most notably near the disputed Spratly Islands.

    The South China Sea is one of the world's geopolitical hot spots, with territorial rights within it disputed by six surrounding countries and regions.

    China has increased its militarization of the area by building airstrips and radars on reclaimed land surrounding maritime features. In a 2016 ruling, an international tribunal in The Hague rejected China's claims to historic rights in the region.

    In addition, Parly reaffirmed France's position on North Korea. "Diplomacy can only be effective if we are firm when it comes to sanctions," she said, adding that France wanted to "encourage de-escalation," and that "dialogue is always a positive thing."

    She hailed recent talks between North and South Korea in relation to the Olympic Games as a "major step" toward the end of North Korean provocations. "France's priority is to create the conditions for fruitful negotiation to occur," she said, refuting any suggestion France was preparing for war.

    The agenda for the forthcoming "two-plus-two" meeting is also set to include more technical aspects of bilateral cooperation, such as the development of anti-mine marine drones. Though still in the early stages, there are high hopes for collaboration of this nature.

    Parly also expressed hopes that France and Japan would be able to sign an acquisition and cross-servicing agreement that has been the subject of negotiations since 2017, but declined to comment on whether a deal would be reached on this occasion.

    Lastly, Parly said she intended to discuss issues related to international security. France is drumming up support for the G5 Sahel, a coalition of African countries fighting against terrorism in the region south of the Sahara, and is hoping Japan will contribute in some form.

  5. #170
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  6. #171
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Fun question from Chinese think tank participant at #Raisina2018:

    You want to build free, open Indo Pacific but also want to build a Quad.

    Is the Quad free and open?

    Can China apply and join?

    : D : D

  7. #172
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    Fun question from Chinese think tank participant at #Raisina2018:

    You want to build free, open Indo Pacific but also want to build a Quad.

    Is the Quad free and open?

    Can China apply and join?

    : D : D
    Sorry, that is for like-minded democratic countries, not authoritarian regimes.

  8. #173
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    Sorry, that is for like-minded democratic countries, not authoritarian regimes.
    Idea is to follow rules and if China is prepared to do that then i don't see a problem letting them in. Course the day that happens the purpose of the quad to exist will cease.

    What disturbs people particularly in ASEAN is China says they don't care for rules. Which means they are unpredictable

    Purpose of the quad is to get China to join the quad : D
    Last edited by Double Edge; 03 Feb 18, at 17:09.

  9. #174
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    Sorry, that is for like-minded democratic countries, not authoritarian regimes.
    The only thing liked-minded democratic countries have in common is bargin-basement-prices and that China has in spades.

  10. #175
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    Quote Originally Posted by WABs_OOE View Post
    The only thing liked-minded democratic countries have in common is bargin-basement-prices and that China has in spades.
    That spade is rusting. Artificial Intelligence.

    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    Idea is to follow rules and if China is prepared to do that then i don't see a problem letting them in. Course the day that happens the purpose of the quad to exist will cease.

    What disturbs people particularly in ASEAN is China says they don't care for rules. Which means they are unpredictable

    Purpose of the quad is to get China to join the quad : D
    The quad is getting shaped precisely because China won't follow rules.

  11. #176
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    That spade is rusting. Artificial Intelligence.
    AI can't replace truckers and loaders or empty a cargo container or packaging or negotiate prices or complete a point of sale or offer terms, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    The quad is getting shaped precisely because China won't follow rules.
    Again, this quad is worthless without South Korea and Taiwan and they're more interested in Chinese strategic help and markets. Hell, Taiwan and South Korea share the same territorial disputes with Japan.

  12. #177
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    This why Quad.

    Fascinating article from 2012. Prescient.

    A Tale of Two Asias | FP | Oct 31 2012

    ARGUMENT

    In the battle for Asia's soul, which side will win -- security or economics?
    BY EVAN A. FEIGENBAUM, ROBERT A. MANNING | OCTOBER 31, 2012, 2:41 PM

    Whatever happened to the "Asian Century?" In recent months, two Asias, wholly incompatible, have emerged in stark relief.

    There is "Economic Asia," the Dr. Jekyll — a dynamic, integrated Asia with 53 percent of its trade now being conducted within the region itself, and a $19 trillion regional economy that has become an engine of global growth.

    And then there is "Security Asia," the veritable Mr. Hyde — a dysfunctional region of mistrustful powers, prone to nationalism and irredentism, escalating their territorial disputes over tiny rocks and shoals, and arming for conflict.

    In today’s Asia, economics and security no longer run in parallel lines. In fact, they are almost completely in collision.

    In the one domain, Asian economies have come in recent years to depend increasingly on China — and one another — for trade, investment, and markets. And this trend toward regional economic integration has been reinforced over the last four years by austerity in Europe and slow growth in the United States. But these same economies now trade nationalist barbs, build navies, and acquire new arms and power projection capabilities. With the exception of China, all major Asian states, though their economies are increasingly integrated within Asia, are tacking hard across the Pacific toward the United States for their security.

    So much for the new East Asian community of which many in Asia have dreamed.

    What explains the change? Put bluntly, Economic Asia and Security Asia have become increasingly irreconcilable. But where Economic Asia was winning the contest in the decade and a half after the Asian financial crisis of 1997-98, Security Asia has begun to overwhelm those recent trends.

    Indeed, so powerful was the rise of Economic Asia that it had challenged even the longstanding American role in the region. Intra-Asian trade and investment took off fast with the end of the Cold War, but Asia’s growing web of economic and political connections was particularly reinforced by the 1997-98 financial crisis, which hit hardest in places like Indonesia and Thailand. Across the region, elites came to view the United States as arrogant and aloof, and groped for their own solutions to regional economic challenges. The United States, which bailed out Mexico in 1994, refused to bail out Thailand just three years later, fueling perceptions that it neglected Southeast Asia. To many in Asia, Washington appeared to be dictating clichéd solutions. And, in the ensuing years, preferential trade agreements, regionally based regulations and standards, and institutions created without American involvement advanced. These have threatened to marginalize the United States over time.

    But after two years of nationalistic rhetoric over rocks and islets in the East and South China Seas, Security Asia has roared back. Rampant and competing 19th and 20th-century nationalisms have moved again to the fore as pathologies that seemed frozen in time raise the specter of renewed conflict. A recent study from the Center for Strategic and International Studies reports that defense spending in China, Japan, India, South Korea, and Taiwan has doubled in the past decade, reaching $224 billion last year. Asians have worked for decades to develop a pan-Asian identity and enhance their collective clout in the global system. But economic integration has thus far yielded no basis for collective or cooperative security in the Pacific. Instead, the world’s new center of economic gravity looks fragile and conflicted.

    Politics Unbound?

    Could Security Asia actually overwhelm, or even destroy, the economic gains that were beginning to pull the region away from its debilitating past? Some have argued that this is a temporary phenomenon — a cynical ploy by Asia’s politicians to build support at a time of domestic weakness.

    But it is too easy to write off these recent developments as the product of domestic politics. Yes, China, Japan, South Korea, and Vietnam, among others, are focused on internal economic or political developments. Seoul, for example, is in the midst of a presidential campaign. Japan’s governing party faces a stiff test, and probable defeat, at the hands of a resurgent Liberal Democratic Party next year. China is in the midst of a once-in-a-decade political succession, and, what is more, Beijing has hit the upper limit of its existing growth model, which is delivering diminishing returns and threatens to become a major political vulnerability for the government. Vietnam and others in Southeast Asia face domestic pressures to supercharge their economies and reinvigorate reforms.

    Yet while it is true that popular chauvinism is a useful tactic for Asia’s beleaguered politicians, such tactics will yield significant costs and enduring damage. Nor are such passions easily turned on and off. Economic and political nationalism is deeply rooted in all Asian countries. It will survive and thrive even after these various political transitions are complete.

    Just take the Vietnam-China relationship. Nayan Chanda wrote in his classic history of Indochina, Brother Enemy, that events after the fall of Saigon demonstrated that "Instead of being the cutting edge of Chinese Communist expansion in Asia that U.S. planners had anticipated, Vietnam proved to be China’s most bitter rival and foe."

    "History and nationalism, not ideology," he noted, powerfully shape Asia’s future.

    Just as these nationalisms threatened ideologies of Communist solidarity in the late 1970s, so do they now threaten ideologies of pan-Asian integration. Economic Asia is increasingly at risk.

    Look, for example, at the recent events in China: As protestors took to the streets this fall in dozens of Chinese cities, Japanese businesses were attacked, thousands of China-Japan flights were canceled, and Honda, Toyota, Panasonic, and other popular Japanese brands closed factories. Sales of Japanese cars in China fell nearly 30 percent in September. The Chinese government, which aspires to a prominent role in international institutions, allowed nationalist passions to overwhelm expansive global ambitions: Beijing scaled back its participation in the 2012 Annual Meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank simply because they were held in Japan.

    The ghosts of history are visible elsewhere too. South Korea and Japan have traded nationalist recriminations over even tinier rocky islets. The result is that America’s Northeast Asian allies, despite a robust trade relationship and a powerful shared interest in countering North Korean threats, could not sign even a straightforward intelligence-sharing agreement to enhance cooperation in the face of a common threat from Pyongyang.

    Asia’s Schizophrenia

    Such developments belie much of what has been written about Asia’s recent evolution. Many have argued, for instance, that Japanese strategy is now motivated principally by realpolitik instincts — specifically a desire to balance rising Chinese power. But if this is true, then it is difficult to understand Tokyo’s festering spat with South Korea.

    What is more, Tokyo has long been an exemplar of Economic Asia and a motive force behind the quest for greater regional economic integration. Postwar Japan, a strong U.S. ally with a powerful sense of trans-Pacific identity, has incubated a variety of pan-Asian regional ideas and ideologies, especially with respect to Asian monetary integration. It was Japanese officials who in 1997 proposed the establishment of an Asian Monetary Fund, which helped give rise to today’s Chiang Mai Initiative of bilateral swaps among ASEAN Plus Three countries (the ten Southeast Asian members of ASEAN, plus China, Japan, and South Korea). And it was Junichiro Koizumi, a prime minister with especially robust ties to the United States, who helped to push forward a China-Japan-South Korea trilateral mechanism and, with a competitive eye on China, other trade arrangements on the basis of ASEAN Plus Three.

    Amazingly, even amid this autumn’s high geopolitical drama over contested islets, talks among Beijing, Tokyo, and Seoul for a trilateral free trade agreement rolled along. The same phenomenon can be seen in Southeast Asia. As fears of confrontation rose last summer, ASEAN Plus Three, which includes the South China Sea’s three most vocal antagonists (China, Vietnam, and the Philippines), announced a strengthening of the Chiang Mai initiative through pledges that double the arrangement’s size to $240 billion in the event of another financial crisis and the establishment of an implementation office. In November, ASEAN and six partners (Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, and South Korea) launched negotiations for a Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership that could be worth $17 trillion in trade and will be a counterpoint to Washington’s preferred pact, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

    Strategic Dilemmas

    It is difficult to avoid analogies to Europe in 1914. Norman Angell’s 1910 bestseller, The Great Illusion, argued that war would prove impossible because Western economies were so interdependent as to make conflict suicidal. But Thucydides’ rationales why men go to war — interest, honor, and fear — have tended to prevail in international history.

    The current push and pull between Economic Asia and Security Asia thus raises a number of powerful questions.

    For one, Asia’s major multilateral institutions have proved to be almost irrelevant to practical problem-solving. Is it, therefore, time to rethink these experiments in regional architecture?

    Pan-Asian regionalism has failed to quell Asia’s nationalist demons, and existing institutions, including those that involve the United States, have been largely missing in action throughout the turmoil of recent years. Last summer, ASEAN cohesion collapsed at a meeting in Phnom Penh, with the Cambodian chair at loggerheads with Vietnam and the Philippines over how sharply to confront Beijing. The new East Asia Summit (EAS) has done nothing to consolidate an agenda in between its annual meetings. And the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) has, similarly, become an arena for accusations and counterclaims. Indeed, the ARF is perhaps the most pregnant example of institutional failure. ARF is Asia’s leading security forum, yet all of the major sources of prospective conflict — Korea, Asian maritime claims, China-Taiwan, and India-Pakistan — are largely off the table.

    Revisiting Asia’s regional institutions could help to fashion mechanisms better able to address the real problems while buttressing the U.S. position. Inertia and "process-centered" rituals continue to predominate at regional meetings. Diplomats rack up frequent flyer miles but little else.

    Certainly, it can be useful for heads of state to meet regularly. But it would be wise for a group of like-minded countries, including the United States, to think through a modest but substantive operational agenda for the next EAS meeting to decide priority issues. Then, depending on the issue, leaders could ask that ARF or the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum, or another relevant body, follow up with practical actions. This would begin to inject greater relevance into regional institutions and more connectivity among them.

    Whither Washington?

    A second question concerns the American role in Asia.

    The U.S. role as Asia’s security provider has been reinforced even as the region’s economy has become increasingly pan-Asian, with the U.S. role shrinking in relative terms. This begs the question of whether the U.S. security role is sustainable without a significantly increased American economic profile in Asia, not to mention substantially greater leadership from Washington in driving regional trade and investment arrangements.

    At present, Washington faces two strategic dilemmas:

    First, the triumph of Security Asia would benefit the United States by assuring its centrality. After all, Washington is Asia’s essential strategic balancer and is becoming more so against the backdrop of growing Chinese naval power and projection capabilities. The dilemma, then, is that a security-dominant Asia will, at the same time, be a vastly more volatile region. And such volatility and instability are precisely what the United States has worked for two decades to avoid.

    Washington could find itself navigating uncomfortably between competing territorial claimants. It will find it difficult to avoid choosing sides not just on matters of principle, such as freedom of navigation, but also on this or that specific sovereignty claim — for example, in the South China Sea between China and the Southeast Asian countries whom it has courted (some of whom have disputed claims with one another). An American president could ultimately find himself pulled into a military conflict over tiny shoals to which the United States has no claim.

    A second dilemma is that Americans seek a stable, dynamic Pacific Rim for the long term and, in that sense, need Economic Asia to prevail. But economically, Asia is increasingly pan-Asian, meaning that American centrality could actually shrink as trade and investment patterns come to further reflect intra-Asian economic and financial integration.

    U.S. economic involvement in Asia is growing in absolute terms but receding in relative terms. Trade with the United States comprises a diminishing share of nearly every East Asian country’s total trade. Yet the U.S. response has been deeply inadequate. Thus far, Washington has focused mainly on security "rebalancing" to the exclusion of economic rebalancing. Asians are providing ever more economic public goods to one another, while the U.S. role in this sphere has ebbed.

    If present trends persist, America will only continue to recede. Thus the United States needs to raise its economic game in the region. And that will require revitalizing the U.S. economy and fiscal fundamentals. More than any factor, these could make a difference in demonstrating that the United States has staying power in Asia for the long term.

    ***

    If history is any guide, it may take a crisis or game-changing shift for Asia to move more fully onto the positive path of Dr. Jekyll. Greater American involvement with Economic Asia will help. But there are few scenarios likely to produce a more dramatic shift through which Economic Asia could overwhelm Security Asia.

    If China stumbles in its efforts to rebalance its economy, concerns will mount that China is falling into the middle-income trap, potentially risking its political stability. That could bring Asians together through a shared interest in avoiding a downward spiral in China. Similarly, a sudden collapse of North Korea could threaten all of Asia, precipitating a sobering crisis and leading nervous Northeast Asians to work together to manage the transition to a reunified Korea.

    But Dr. Jekyll faces a very uphill battle. Even under such dramatic scenarios, nationalistic responses could ensue, leading Mr. Hyde to prevail.

    Evan A. Feigenbaum is Vice Chairman of the Paulson Institute at the University of Chicago. He previously served as U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for South Asia, U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Central Asia, and Member of the U.S. Secretary of State’s Policy Planning Staff with principal responsibility for East Asia and the Pacific.

    Robert A. Manning is a fellow at the Brent Scowcroft Center for International Security at the Atlantic Council. He served as a senior counselor to the U.S. undersecretary of state for global affairs from 2001 to 2004, as a member of the State Department policy planning staff from 2004 to 2008, and on the National Intelligence Council’s Strategic Futures Group from 2008 to 2012.

  13. #178
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Thinking about the importance of the Andamans

    The Andaman And Nicobar Islands: India’S Eastern Anchor In A Changing Indo-Pacific | WOTR | Mar 21 2018

    Critically situated near the Malacca Strait, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands could significantly alter the maritime dynamics in the Indo-Pacific. While the islands have been envisaged as a platform for offensive capabilities, their true benefit today lies in furthering maritime domain awareness and maintaining a naval advantage for India and its friends.

    In addition to formulating a coherent strategy for the role of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands in its national maritime approach, Delhi must also find a way to make use of its partners in addressing the islands’ lack of physical infrastructure. While India has neglected its naval priorities, the maritime domain gives it an opportunity to establish itself as a leading regional actor. These maritime advantages will help India balance and respond to a rising and assertive China in its neighborhood.
    Last edited by Double Edge; 21 Mar 18, at 16:57.

  14. #179
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    A Spanish company lost its concession. What to make of it. Vietnam has agreements with other countries too

    Emptiness of US rhetoric has been exposed by China bringing Vietnam to heel | SCMP | Apr 15 2018

  15. #180
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    What did Vietnam expect? The US to goto war with China to defend Vietnamese claims?

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