Blog Post

The South China Sea ruling and China’s grand strategy

July 13, 2016, Richard C. Bush III

In the wake of the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea's ruling this week, the question going forward is how China will respond. Will it double down on the aggressive and coercive activities of the past six years, behavior that has put most of its East Asian neighbors on guard? Will it continue to interpret the Law of the Sea in self-serving ways that very few countries accept? Or, might China recognize that its South China Sea strategy has been an utter failure and that its best response is to take a more restrained and neighborly approach?

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