Compromise in South China Sea?

Examining China’s regional approach.

Beijing leaves little room for compromise in South China Sea

Linda Jakobson’s recent report,¬†China’s Unpredictable Maritime Security Actors, is an important contribution for China watchers, especially for those who seek to understand the relationship between Chinese actions associated with its maritime disputes in Asia and its broader strategic approach to the region. This relationship is an important policy question because observers, including myself, worry that the past two years of assertive behaviour in the East and South China Seas foreshadows Beijing’s approach its neighbourhood when ‘fully risen’.

Anxiety about heavy-handed Chinese hegemon-like behaviour in the future has grown because many observers believe China’s approach to maritime disputes is the product of a deliberate and systematic strategy carefully harmonised within China’s party-military-civil structure. In short, what the region has been experiencing is a well thought out and superbly executed strategy.

Jakobson’s report says ‘not so fast,’ at least with regard to maritime disputes.

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