Monday, April 9, 2012

East Sea solution:To remove the "cow tongue" first

By Tran Kinh Nghi-Independent researcher 
It is somehow strange that  the world has been consuming so much effort and time, and even bloodshed in case of Vietnam yet to find a solution to the conflict of  East Sea (internationally known as South China Sea). It is even more strange that this issue only appeared since 2009 when Beijing suddenly announced its nine-knotted line looking like the tongue of the cow) only basing on random sketch by a general under the Chang Kai-shek's regime. As a matter of fact this line was never known to public before and is not substituted with any latitudes or longitudes. 

Maybe, Beijing  assumes itself that China is  now strong enough to carry out their dream of expansion and domination of the East Sea (?). However, people wonder if any reason for such a vague line to exist without any  legal ground could have any "effect" by internal norm? Or how could the Chinese hegemonism  be once more successful with their acrobatic magic of  "turning nothing into something"? 

Chinese coast gaurd vesels contantly ramping and harussing  Vietnamese fishing boats
If any country has the right to draw its borderlines  on the sea like the ​​Chinese does, the British could draw their borders into a long tongue to get ragged islands of Portland down the Southern Latin America; and borders of  the U.S.A.could cover most of the Pacific;  Australia and New Zealand could share ownership of the South Pacific and Antarctica ; and many other countries could have the right to do so here and there. If any country could take historical footprints of ships sailing across certain waters to claim "ownership" of a sea , then the Mongols could claim sovereignty over the East China Sea and down to the northern spots in the East Sea. So, one can not imagine what will happen to peace, security and stability of the world, especially along international sea-routes, if every national states would do so arbitrarily on a global scale. 

If any state could just draw itself  some vague dashed lines without any data of magnitudes or landmarks and claims it's "core interest" , then what will happen to the world at large? The way of claiming  territory like that only happens in the wildlife, and now  it happens with the case of China drawing its line in the East Sea! The ambiguous boundaries encompassing the East Sea, most of which infringe upon the continental shelf, territorial waters and entire exclusive economic zones of other littoral states. Even if the islands and rocks being occupied by Chinese forces in the middle of the Sea, by  international law and practice, are not at all eligible to claim sovereignty over the waters around. But the danger is that  Beijing allows it self to implement the so-called sovereign right over the region by acts of war  directly violating  vital interests of it's neighboring states- the first victims are Vietnam and the Philippines. China has been repeatedly threatening to attack these two countries. In many cases the Chinese navy solders  in civilian cloth act like gangsters and sea pirates looting and harassing thousands Vietnamese fishermen.  

In short, no one else but China is actually causing risk of hot war in this region. So, the international community should better not take time to discuss solutions while the Chinese had insistently denied any multilateral solution. Let's  first of all request Beijing to officially renounce its unjustified dashed line. People of  the littoral states and other relating parties of interests in the East Sea never accept such monopolist claim of China. Any lingering schemes or  stubbornness from the Chinese side  shall only detrimental  the interests of other stakeholders and of itself alone. /.

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