Now, within days he's done another correct thing. Obama directed a US destroyer to pass within 12 miles of man-made island in the Spratly chain now claimed by the Chinese. Their claim is outrageous given that the Spratlys are at least 500 miles from any Chinese territory. But it's worse than that.
The Chinese claim these islands and basically the entire South China Sea all the way to the Filipino, Vietnam, Malaysian and Brunei coasts. And these claims extend more than a 1000 miles from China. And they have enraged all of the SE Asian neighbors bordering this sea and have been "strong-arming" the Vietnamese and the Filipinos from time to time with showdowns and use of force.
|The Chinese Claim "Ownership" of the Entire South China Sea. To Hell With Everyone Else! This Figure Shows the UN's 200 mile Economic Exclusion Zone recognized by most of the World|
Such claims are outrageous and provocative. It would be as if the US suddenly claims offshore rights all the way to Newfoundland which include active oil and gas production and exploration in offshore Canada! (yes, there is offshore production in Newfoundland). And it would be like the US claiming the right to drilling in lucrative oil and gas acreage just offshore of Campeche, MX where the Mexicans are producing about 1 million barrels per day. But this is exactly what the Chinese are claiming. They are claiming rights to existing offshore oil and gas production underway in Vietnamese waters! Untenable and outrageous!
For example, in May 2014, China set a drilling rig within the 200 mile exclusion zone claimed by Vietnam but only 75 miles from Hainan Island to drill. It was accompanied by a huge flotilla of navy ships. Rioting erupted in Vietnam and they chased Chinese nationals out of Vietnam at knifepoint if not gun point.
Basically the Chinese claim to own EVERYTHING! This is a pure power play that can not stand.
Down with the Chinese Communist imperialist pigs!