"China is confirming to the international community that it is a despicable, rogue state."
The international community today sees China as the international bully that it really is.
China’s expansionist activities in the South China Sea are in manifest violation of International Law, particularly the rules embodied in the United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). Beijing is a signatory to and has ratified its inclusion in the UNCLOS.
The UNCLOS recognizes the right of the Philippines to its exclusive economic zone, or the maritime area surrounding the external perimeter of the Philippine archipelago. This means only the Philippines may derive commercial benefits from that zone. Those benefits include fishing and oil and natural gas exploration.
Therefore, China cannot appropriate any part of that zone without the prior consent of the Philippines.
China’s illegal activities in the South China Sea forced the Philippines to sue Beijing in the UN Permanent Court of Arbitration. The Philippines won its case, but China refuses to recognize the arbitral ruling on the flimsy excuse that it did not consent to be sued in the case.
It’s a flimsy excuse because China is a signatory to the UNCLOS, and the Philippine case invokes the UNCLOS against China. Under the provisions of the UNCLOS, a signatory to the UNCLOS automatically gives its consent to being sued in arbitration cases involving the UNCLOS.
By groundlessly repudiating the foregoing PCA arbitral ruling, and by proceeding with its illegal expansionist activities in the South China Sea, China is confirming to the international community that it is a despicable, rogue state.
History itself shows that China should not be trusted.
China became the communist country called the People’s Republic of China in 1949. Red China, as the new country was called by the world, was not recognized by the UN. That recognition went to Nationalist China, which established itself in Taiwan.
Like what Nazi Germany did to Austria in 1938, China forcibly annexed Tibet in 1950. Today, the people of Tibet live in fear of the communists.
When communist North Korea invaded South Korea in 1950, the UN sent troops to push back the invaders. China joined the Korean War and fought on the side of North Korea.
After the Korean War ended in 1953, China encouraged the Korean communist despot Kim Il Sung to transform North Korea into the totalitarian, oppressive, provocative and depraved country it is today. China remains North Korea’s sole ally and supporter today.
China severed its alliance with the Soviet Union in 1960. China’s dictator, Mao Zedong, insisted that Chinese communism was better than Russian communism.
In 1962, China made an unsuccessful attempt to seize Indian territory. Because India staunchly resisted, Beijing withdrew.
China bullied its way to the UN in 1971 after getting the international body to award Taiwan’s seat in the assembly to Beijing. Its membership in this international peacekeeping body notwithstanding, China continued to be a rogue state.
In 1974, China seized the Paracel Islands off the coast of what was then South Vietnam. Today, China still occupies the islands and refuses to turn them over to Vietnam, despite their common communist ideologies.
Later in 1989, the ruthless communist government in Beijing enforced a violent crackdown on pro-democracy activists, resulting in widespread death. That incident is now known as the Tiananmen Square Massacre.
Over the past two decades, China has been lending money to developing countries in Africa. When the debtor states failed to pay up in due time, China took over their vast land holdings and strategic ports.
COVID-19, the deadly virus that has killed millions of people worldwide and disrupted the economies of the world, is suspected to have originated from China. Beijing’s refusal to cooperate with investigators from the World Health Organization further fanned this suspicion. It is further suspected that China secretly planned to use COVID-19 as part of its military arsenal.
Lately, China’s air force has been making provocative flights over Taiwan’s defense zone, prompting Taipei to declare that it will fight any attempt by China to invade the island.
China’s troublemaking in the South China Sea has also triggered the United States to announce that it will defend the Philippines in case of a Chinese war of aggression.
China professes to be a good friend of the Philippines, but its behavior in the South China Sea is not that of a friend. It is the behavior of one who is not trustworthy.
The Philippines should start dealing with China in the same two-faced manner Beijing has been dealing with Manila as the latter’s more diplomatic approach has so far failed to get the kind of response that it expects.
Whatever reason China proclaims to justify its current behavior in the South China Sea, prudence dictates that the Philippines must not trust China.