How America is losing the battle for the South China Sea
Some optimists have pointed to small developments—such as China this year permitting Filipino and Vietnamese fishing around Scarborough Shoal for the first time since 2012—as encouraging signs that the Hague’s ruling is having a positive effect on the South China Sea.
Most observers see it much differently. With the U.S. government focused on North Korea, China this summer has made substantial progress in further establishing de facto control over most of the South China Sea.
Aside from an uptick in U.S. Navy freedom-of-navigation operations in the South China Sea, the administration seems uninterested in reinforcing international law.
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