April, 2016 International Law

Richard Javad Heydarian
A specter is haunting Asia—the specter of full Chinese domination in the South China Sea. Latest reports suggest that China could soon move ahead with building military facilities on the Scarborough Shoal, a contested land feature it has occupied since 2012. This would allow China, according to a Mainland source, to “further perfect” its aerial superiority across the contested waters.


by Burak Bekdil, Hürriyet Daily News
Tragically, and in his own words, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan thinks (or pretends to think) that the primary reason behind terror in Turkey is to prevent Turkey from getting into the world's top 10 economies. "We very clearly see that it does not suit some people's interests for Turkey to become one of the top 10 economies in the world ... And they try to steer Turkey away from its goal through the scourge of terror."

By Daniel Wei Boon Chua

America can't take war off the table.
Territorial disputes in the South China Sea—involving China, Taiwan, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and the Philippines—are destabilizing the region. Although not a claimant, the United States has a vested interest in the outcome. The U.S. Seventh Fleet has been operating in the area since the Cold War, and the maritime disputes involve the Philippines, a close American ally.


cc Flickr National Museum of the U.S. Navy, modified, public domain

Geopolitical Monitor, Robert Shines
Tensions in the South China Sea, specifically the Spratly Islands, are set to continue as the U.S. and China continue playing their game of “chicken” with one another. However, these military tensions between the two powers are only symptoms of the fact that China already perceives the U.S. as the chicken in the region.