US interests in the South China Sea disputes

12/07/2014


As tensions in South China Sea flared again between China and its Southeast Asian neighbors over disputed territory, especially Vietnam and the Philippines. The United States has paid more and more attention to the region and those disputes.
While the US is not among the half-dozen claimants in the South China Sea, Washington says it has a national interest in peaceful resolution of the disputes. Why exactly the region is so directly important to U.S. interests?
The South China Sea functions as the throat of the Western Pacific and Indian Oceans – a mass of connective economic tissue where global sea routes coalesce, accounting for $1.2 trillion in U.S. trade annually. It is the demographic hub of the 21st-century global economy, where 1.5 billion Chinese, nearly 600 million Southeast Asians and 1.3 billion inhabitants of the Indian subcontinent move vital resources and exchange goods across the region and around the globe. It is an area where more than a half-dozen countries have overlapping territorial claims over a seabed with proven oil reserves of seven billion barrels as well as an estimated 900 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. And, the South China Sea carries 40 percent of world trade. And here are two of the US’s allies, Japan and Philippines, which also have disputes with China.
So it’s not strange when US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton once declared that “The United States has a national interest in freedom of navigation, open access to Asia’s maritime commons and respect for international law in the South China Sea, and that America seeks “a collaborative diplomatic process by all claimants for resolving the various territorial disputes without coercion.”
And, in last two months when China has deployed its Haiyang Shiyou – 981 oil rig and maritime forces into Vietnam’s Economic Exclusive Zone, which led to escalating tensions in the region. US has expressed serious concerns and objections to these actions. The Obama administration has been increasingly critical of China’s assertive actions and has called on it to clarify its expansive claims in accordance with international law.
At the fourth annual South China Sea Conference of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) on “Recent Trends in the South China Sea and U.S. Policy” on July 10 and 11, scholars and senior policymakers were under no illusion that Beijing would tame its ambitions on its own any time soon.
“Now is the time to change our dialogue and be less deferential in our diplomatic speak”, said Republican Mike Rogers, chairman of the Intelligence Committee of the US House of Representatives.
He accused China of “gluttonous, naked aggression” in its drive to control territory and resources in the South China Sea and called on the government to be more direct and aggressive when dealing with China, echoing the point of view of the White House.
At the conference, Rogers called for the US to increase intelligence sharing and military cooperation with other nations in the region to push back against China and show that it is not the sole and dominant power.
“Any military in the world that uses its power to bully, intimidate and destabilize the economy of the world, is not in the United States’ best interests, nor of our allies nor our friends” Rogers told the conference.
Patrick Cronin, senior director of the Asia-Pacific Security Program at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), said Washington and its allies need to impose costs on China’s behavior.
“We have to make the Chinese leadership understand that unilateral change and the rule of force is not acceptable” he said at the conference.
On July 10th, The US Senate also passed the Resolution S.RES.412 on the East Sea, requesting China to return to the status quo as it existed before May 1, 2014. China’s territorial claims and actions have not been clarified under international law, including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, constitute a unilateral attempt to change the status quo by force, and appear to be in violation of the 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea. It also reaffirms the strong support of the US Government for freedom of navigation and other internationally lawful uses of sea and airspace in the Asia-Pacific region.       
So, we can see how much US has paid interests in the region generally and in the South China Sea disputes in particular. What we want to know is how deep US would interfere into these. Let wait and see!
Chia sẻ bài viết ^^
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All comments [ 10 ]


Hùng Quân 12/7/14 21:46

Come on US, let kick China's ass!

Huy Quốc 12/7/14 21:49

The South China Sea carries 40 percent of world trade. And here are two of the US’s allies, Japan and Philippines. This region is so important to the US interests and they will not let China do what they want here.

Hoàng Lân 12/7/14 21:52

I'm so glad that The US Senate also passed the Resolution S.RES.412 on the East Sea, requesting China to withdraw its oil rig and forces from Vietnam's EEZ.

Quân Hoàng 12/7/14 21:57

US will be a balancing power to break the China's dream, making it to be a nightmare!

Quốc Cường 12/7/14 22:01

The United States has a national interest in freedom of navigation, open access to Asia’s maritime commons and respect for international law in the South China Sea. And it is so crucial in military, especially when China is escalating its military presence in the region.

Vân Nhàn 12/7/14 22:03

Should we hope for US presence here? I still concern this.

Lê Tín 12/7/14 22:06

It's so ironic that US and China are both former enemies of Vietnam, we are so fateful huh.

Phạm Hiếu 12/7/14 22:10

We need more and more international supports and when the support come from US, it's the most influential.

Huy Lâm 12/7/14 22:12

China’s territorial claims and actions have not been clarified under international law, including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, and appear to be in violation of the 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea.

Quốc Kiên 12/7/14 22:15

I think US will play an important role in resolving the disputes and restraining China's aggressive actions.

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