Last of 2 parts
This is the second instalment (the first was published last Friday) of Chapter 9 of my book, Debacle: The Aquino Regime’s Scarborough Fiasco and the South China Sea Arbitration Deception, which discusses this development in detail, with the appropriate citation of sources of data and statements. The book is being printed now, to be distributed in the first week of January, pre-orders at https://rigobertotiglao.com/debacle/.
CHINA’s massive island-building blitz is a version — of the classic (although not always successful) response to international disputes — the so-called “sunk costs strategy.” This means, crudely, that a nation would succeed in convincing a belligerent rival not to invade if it invests heavily in arms and even a defensive wall.
The billions of dollars that China has spent in building its artificial islands and the facilities within was a strong signal to the US that any decision of a tribunal that China has no claims in the South China Sea (SCS) will be ignored. To illustrate in a vivid manner: an elite US Navy team could probably have taken over Mischief Reef before 2013. Now, it would require a brigade to capture the huge facility in Mischief Reef.
It is astonishing — or a case of colossal stupidity — that the Aquino 3rd regime, as well as the US strategists who shepherded the arbitration suit thought that through “lawfare,” they could get China to give up its seven reefs in the Spratlys, or that the Chinese would not do anything in response to such “new form of warfare.” It was a huge miscalculation on the part of the US, as was indeed the Obama administration’s entire “Pivot to Asia” policy.(more…)