Paracel Islands, CIA World Factbook. Last Updated-December 20, 2011
- “The Paracel Islands are surrounded by productive fishing grounds and by potential oil and gas reserves. In 1932, French Indochina annexed the islands and set up a weather station on Pattle Island; maintenance was continued by its successor, Vietnam. China has occupied all the Paracel Islands since 1974, when its troops seized a South Vietnamese garrison occupying the western islands. China built a military installation on Woody Island with an airfield and artificial harbor. The islands also are claimed by Taiwan and Vietnam.”
Poon, Derek. Naval Modernization and Power Projection in the South China Sea. Governing the South China Sea. Middlebury College, Winter Term 2006.
- “This website aims to provide an overview on naval and air modernization in the countries bordering the South China Sea.” Key findings: “Though there is a widespread attempt to modernize the militaries of countries bordering the South China Sea, there does not seem to be a region-wide arms race, defined as a ‘competitive building up of armaments by actors in a potential conflict that proceeds in an action-reaction pattern.’ Military expenditures as a percentage of GDP have been relatively stable. The large absolute increase in military expenditure, especially in China’s case, is a byproduct of its increase in absolute GDP. There is, however, indication that an arms race may occur in the near future, not on the acquisition of more arms, but on the acquisitions of specific weapons and counter-weapons. There is indication towards the acquisition of submarines and ASW equipment, especially on the part of China, Taiwan, Malaysia and Singapore. A focus on the acquisition of an air force that is capable of adequately defending claimed territory is also seen, as indicated by the recent acquisitions of 4th generation multi-role attack aircraft by nearly all countries in the region and the focus of acquisition of AEW&C aircraft and aerial refuelling tankers by China, Taiwan, and Singapore.However, none of the countries bordering the South China Sea remotely approaches the United States in military capability, allowing the US to remain a key out-of-theatre actor in the region.”
Puchala, Donald. Of Pirates and Terrorists: What Experience and History Teach. Contemporary Security Policy, Vol.26, No.1 (April 2005), pp.1–24.
- “Though never eliminated, and ever recurrent, piracy has been periodically suppressed. In light of the present-day challenges of international terrorism, therefore, the history of piracy might be usefully examined for possible lessons about dealing with transitional menacers.”
Reefs at Risk: A Map-Based Indicator of Threats to the World’s Coral Reefs. World Resources Institute.
- Published online and in print with the International Center for Living Aquatic Resources Management (ICLARM), the World Conservation Monitoring Center (WCMC), and the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), this is the first global assessment of coral reefs to map areas at risk from overfishing, coastal development, and other human activity. This global, map-based analysis evaluates human pressure on coral reefs worldwide and provides information and tools to better manage coastal habitats.
Ren Xiaofeng, A Chinese Perspective. Marine Policy Volume 29, Issue 2 , March 2005, Pages 139-146.
- Regarding the regime of military and intelligence gathering activities in the EEZ, China argues that the freedoms of navigation and overflight in the EEZ have certain restrictions including that the activity must be peaceful and not threaten to use force against the coastal State. This includes military surveys, military maneuvers, and military reconnaissance which are a form of battlefield preparation. These activities are also subject to due regard for the rights of the coastal State. China also argues that there are serious shortcomings regarding the regime of marine scientific research (MSR) in the EEZ and that marine surveys or military surveys carried out by MSR platforms require the consent of the coastal State.
Richardson, Michael. A Time Bomb for Global Trade: Maritime-related Terrorism in an Age of Weapons of Mass Destruction  MarStudies 1; (2004) 134 Maritime Studies 1.
- “The world has not experienced a major terrorist attack using ships or containers – at least not yet. But it is clear that terrorists can see the potential of using the maritime trading system to conceal weapons or agents for attack purposes or to provide funding or support for their operations….”
Roach, Ashley. Enhancing Maritime Security in the Straits of Malacca and Singapore. Journal of International Affairs; Vol. 59,1, Fall 2005 pg.97.
- Examines the various threats posed to shipping and the marine environment in the Straits of Malacca while reviewing the steps needed to give law enforcement officials the means to combat piracy in the area.
Rosenberg, David. ASEAN-China Relations: Realities and Prospects, edited by Saw Swee-Hock, Sheng Lijun and Chin Kin Wah. Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, 2005. Book Review. The China Journal; Issue 56; July 2006; 229-231..
- The global implications of China’s rise are nowhere more evident than in its relations with ASEAN. ASEAN-China relations must contend with three formidable challenges: how to cope with a rising China when it becomes a superpower in its own right; in an East Asian region with – for the first time – both a strong China and a strong Japan; and with a United States which aims to maintain its sole superpower status. The major security issues facing ASEAN-China relations are nontraditional ones such as the internal impacts of globalization due to the financial crisis of 1997, the destabilizing world market pressures on domestic society, and the increasing economic competition among member-states that test the evolving bonds of a growing ASEAN. China’s foreign policy reorientation and post-Cold War global market forces have opened an extraordinary window of opportunity for strengthening ASEAN-China relations.
Rosenberg, David, Beyond the Scarborough Scare: Joint Resource Management in the South China Sea, e-International Relations, May 1, 2012.
- Tensions in the South China Sea have been rising in recent years due to two major factors. The first is the growing competition for scarce resources, especially hydrocarbons and fisheries. The other factor is the seemingly intractable disputes over sovereignty claims in the South China Sea. Given the high degree of regional economic inter-dependence, it is not surprising that there have been numerous incidents and conflicts involving survey vessels and fishing boats on the seas. However, there are still no routine or well-tested ways to resolve these low-level but frequent conflicts. These issues are discussed below, along with a consideration of the prospects for joint resource management for the Scarborough Shoal.
Rosenberg, David. Biodiversity, Geology, and the Wallace Line in Southeast Asia. South China Sea WWW VL. Winter-Spring 2000.
- Southeast Asia is an area of extraordinarily high biodiversity. This high diversity in land and sea is a result of three major factors: the overlap of independently evolved species ranges, high rates of local speciation, and differentially high survival among temporally and spatially heterogeneous habitats. This has resulted in perhaps the highest degree of biodiversity in the world, especially in the archipelagos of Indonesia and the Philippines. One major indication of this is the large number of tropical habitats in the area. Over 30% of the world’s coral reefs are found in southeast Asia. The source of this biodiversity can be found in the geological formation of the South China Sea.
Rosenberg, David. Contested Borderlands of the South China Sea, BBC World Service, 21 April 2009.
- On 8 March 2009, the Pentagon reported that five Chinese ships had confronted an unarmed US ocean surveillance ship, the USNS Impeccable, and engaged in “reckless and dangerous maneuvers” about 70 nautical miles or 120 kilometers south of Hainan Island. The Impeccable incident demonstrated how volatile unresolved questions can be. What US military activities are permissible in China’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) in the South China Sea? How does the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) govern territorial claims in these waters?
Rosenberg, David. Coral Reef Pollution in the South China Sea, South China Sea WWW VL. Winter-Spring 2000.
- Over 30% of the world’s coral reefs are found in Southeast Asia, especially around the archipelagos of Indonesia and the Philippines. These coral reefs provide a habitat for the highest biological diversity in the world (Wilkinson et al. 1993). Most shallow marine biota reach their peak diversity in these areas. These reefs are under threat from anthropogenic pressures as a result of population growth, urbanization, and economic growth in the area. Reefs are being degraded and damaged by land and sea based human activities, including organic and inorganic pollution, sedimentation, and overfishing.
Rosenberg, David. Dire Straits: Maritime Security in the South China Sea, Asia-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus, April, 2005
- From the Taiwan Strait to the Strait of Malacca, security concerns are growing around the South China Sea. While the Bush Administration sees a resurgent Chinese military threat across the Taiwan Strait and a terrorist threat in the Strait of Malacca, many countries between the Straits are more concerned about security for their maritime resources from the threats of competitors, traffickers, poachers, and pirates. How can these competing security priorities be resolved?
Rosenberg, David. “Environmental Pollution around the South China Sea: Developing a Regional Response to a Regional Problem,” Resource Management in Asia-Pacific Working Paper No. 20, Division of Pacific and Asian History, Research School for Pacific and Asian Studies, The Australian National University, 1999.
- “This paper provides one case study of how the member-nations of ASEAN – the Association of Southeast Asian Nations – are attempting to deal with a major cause of transboundary air pollution, smoke haze from forest fires.”
Rosenberg, David, Governing the South China Sea: From “Freedom of the Seas” to Ocean Enclosure Movements, Harvard Asia Quarterly, December 2010.
- – Who governs the South China Sea? Who controls access to its considerable resources? Who ensures safety and security for its many stakeholders? Three movements have emerged that attempt to provide answers to these questions. First, a resource control movement of coastal nations wants to assert and extend Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) claims under the 1994 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). With population growth, consumer demand, and technological capabilities, coastal states are interested in controlling and exploiting the natural resources in their EEZs. Second, a conservation movement has been evolving to ensure environmentally sustainable resource use and to preserve the natural biodiversity of the sea as a public trust and not for private exploitation. Third, and oldest, there is a security movement of international stakeholders who want to preserve freedom of the seas and the straits of the South China Sea and its archipelagic waterways for their commerce and naval vessels. This article examines these three movements and the converging and diverging trends among them. It finds a paradox: regional integration has exacerbated resource nationalism.
Rosenberg, David. Managing the Resources of the China Seas: China’s Bilateral Fisheries Agreements with Japan, South Korea, & Vietnam, Asia-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus, June 2005
- The press is filled with reports on the multiple conflicts erupting in the China seas: territorial conflicts, resource conflicts, and historical conflicts. There is one area, however, where remarkable progress is being made in cooperative resource management. China has been making slow but steady progress in negotiating a network of bilateral agreements with Japan, South Korea, and Vietnam to manage their common fishery resources.
Rosenberg, David, Christopher Chung. Maritime Security in the South China Sea: Coordinating Coastal and User State Priorities, Ocean Development & International Law, 39:1, 51 – 68.
- Maritime security concerns in the South China Sea are increasing for several reasons: higher volumes of shipping traffic, protection of Exclusive Economic Zone resources, piracy, terrorist threats, greater international scrutiny of ports and shipping, and the modernization of regional naval and coast guard forces. Coastal states and international user states have many overlapping interests in the South China Sea; for example, in promoting safe navigation through its busy sea lanes. On other issues, in particular, anti-piracy or anti-maritime terrorism measures, they have different views about the seriousness of the threat and the responses necessary to address it.
Rosenberg, David, The Paradox of the South China Sea Disputes, The China Story Journal, April 2013
- The paradox of these South China Sea disputes is that the escalation of maritime confrontations, resource conflicts and competing territorial claims has occurred among Asian countries that otherwise reflect an extraordinarily high degree of cooperation on matters of trade and commerce. Hence regional, and global, economic integration has had the unintended effect of intensifying resource competition and territorial nationalism around the South China Sea. Will these discords and tensions lead to a regional arms race? That depends on the intricate interplay of three factors: resource competition, resource nationalism and military modernisation programs.it.
Rosenberg, David, The Political Economy of Piracy in the South China Sea, Naval War College Review, Summer 2009, Vol. 62, No. 3
- This article attempts to analyze piracy through the perspective of political economy, with an emphasis on state and market stakeholders and on the economic, technological, and institutional factors affecting ocean governance of piracy.“Regional and international stakeholders share many overlapping interests— for example, in promoting safe navigation for commercial shipping. On antipiracy or antiterrorist enforcement measures, however, they have had conflicting views. Littoral states are insistent that the process of achieving regional maritime security should be locally initiated and led. They are willing to accept external assistance, but they contend that ultimately they must have the authority and capability to provide that security.
Rosenberg, David, The Rise of China: Implications for Security Flashpoints and Resource Politics in the South China Sea,” in Pumphrey C., ed., The Rise of China in Asia: Security Implications, Strategic Studies Institute, January 2002
- Examines five major issues: 1. Conflicting territorial claims to the numerous islands and reefs in the region, in particular, the Spratly Islands and Paracel Islands, 2. conflicting claims to potential oil and natural gas reserves around these islands, 3. maintenance of freedom of navigation in the face of rising shipping traffic, 4. piracy and sea robbery, and 5. environmental pollution and resource depletion issues. How cooperative or confrontational has China been in resolving these conflicts in the South China Sea?
Rowan, Joshua P. The U.S.-Japan Security Alliance,Asean, and The South China Sea Dispute, Asian Survey, Vol. XLV, no. 3, May/June 2005.
- “The situation in the South China Sea—where sovereignty and oil and natural gas interests are converging—creates a flashpoint with significant policy implications for the US, Japan, and other Asian nations. Only the U.S.-Japan security alliance, operating in conjunction with the Association of Southeast
Asian Nations, can safely foster a long-term solution.”
Roy, Dennis. Tension in the Taiwan Strait. Dept. of National Security Affairs, Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey. March 2000.
- Roy discusses the PRC’s motivations for threatening Taiwan, the potential impact of economic interchange across the Strait on Taiwan’s security, the possible forms a PRC-Taiwan conflict might take, the role the USA plays in Taiwan’s security, and approaches to alleviating the PRC threat to Taiwan.
San Pablo-Baviera, Aileen. The China factor in US alliances in East Asia and the Asia Pacific. Australian Journal of International Affairs; Vol. 57, No. 2, July 2003, 339-352.
- “The ‘China factor’ in the contemporary US alliance system can be understood by asking the following questions: (1) what are China’s perceptions of and concerns regarding the US alliance system as a whole and regarding specific bilateral military alliances of the US?; (2) where does China figure in the American post-Cold War worldview, and what role does the United States itself see its alliances playing in relation to China?; (3) to what extent are the current bilateral alliances of the US directed against China, in the view of US allies; and (4) how might the reshaping of the international security environ ment following the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States affect China’s perceptions and attitudes towards future alliance developments?”
Saw Swee-Hock, and Sheng Lijun, Eds. ASEAN-China Relations: Realities and Prospects. Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies; 2005.
- The past decade has witnessed rapid development in ASEAN-China relations. Both sides now have more in common than before, though differences still exist. ASEAN and China have established a promising strategic partnership ensuring peace, stability, co-operation as well as prosperity for the region. New challenges will, however, continue to emerge to test the resolve of the partnership. This book – an ISEAS conference report with 24 detailed chapters – examines some of the areas of convergence and divergence and the possible trajectories of the development of ASEAN-China relations.
Schippke, Wolfgang -The Spratly Islands
-Wolfgang Schippke provides an eclectic collection of reports, maps, and historical data on several islands in the South China Sea, circa 1998.
- Archive of a currently inactive moderated electronic news list about environmental change and policy in Southeast Asia. The acronym stands for: Southeast Asian Science-Policy Network. Coverage: between early 2000 and June 2009.
Security and Maritime Conflict in East Asia: Publications, 1998-2001
- Articles and dissertations on the South China Sea. Note: This project – sponsored by the University of Oslo and the International Peace Research Institute of Oslo – has ended and is no longer active.
Sharma, O. P. An Indian perspective. Marine Policy Volume 29, Issue 2 , March 2005, Pages 147-151.
- “The 1982 UNCLOS does not curb military activities in foreign EEZs. By specifically prohibiting certain activities in the territorial sea, it follows that such activities are permissible outside of it… However, due to new threats and technological advances, the authority, capability and jurisdiction of coastal States is being enhanced. Thus guidelines are needed to avoid certain contradictions.” Part of a special issue on “Military and Intelligence Gathering Activities in the Exclusive E conomic Zone: Consensus and Disagreement.”
Shie, Tamara Renee. Ports in a Storm? The Nexus Between Counterterrorism, Counterproliferation, and Maritime Security in Southeast Asia. Pacific Forum CSIS, Issues & Insights, Vol. 4, No. 4, July 2004.
- “This paper recommends greater regional cooperation; an increase in cost burden-sharing, technological collaboration, and capacity building; the creation of a truly regional maritime security initiative; and the adherence to and new proposals for UN maritime security conventions.”
Singh, Ruchi, Background Report on the USNS Impeccable Incident of March 8, 2009, Middlebury College, June 2009.
- A compilation of news reports, journal articles, maps, photos and videos.
Skaridov, Alexander S. Naval activity in the foreign EEZ—the role of terminology in law regime. Marine Policy Volume 29, Issue 2 , March 2005, Pages 153-155.
- “Definitions of terminology are the key to the application of the Law of the Sea. Definitions of a term can be determined from its generic characteristics and specific differences.” Part of a special issue on “Military and Intelligence Gathering Activities in the Exclusive Economic Zone: Consensus and Disagreement.”
Smith, Gary J., Multilateralism and Regional Security in Asia: The ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) and APEC’s Geopolitical Value, The Weatherhead Center for International Affairs Harvard University, 1997.,
- “Major powers traditionally do not wish to be tied down by middle and small sized powers, but institutions are emerging in Asia, such as the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) and the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) group, in which multiple small and middle sized powers play leading roles.”
Snyder, Craig, The Implications of Hydrocarbon Development in the South China Sea, International Journal, LII, Winter 1996-97:
- “This paper will explore how the possibility of economic windfalls due to resource exploitation add to the the difficulty in reaching any agreement among the rival claimants.”
Snyder, Scott, The South China Sea Dispute: Prospects for Preventive Diplomacy, United State Institute of Peace, 1996,
- Outlines the various territorial claims involved in the disputes over the South China Seas and evaluates the prospects for success of several of the proposed resolution mechanisms.
Song, Yann-Huei. Declarations and Statements with Respect to the 1982 UNCLOS: Potential Legal Disputes between the United States and China after US Accession to the Convention. Ocean Development & International Law; Vol. 36, No. 3, 2005.
- “This article discusses the implications of U.S. accession to the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) for the future development of Sino-American relations in the areas of ocean law and politics. The declarations and understandings contained in the Senate Resolution of Advice and Consent to U.S. Accession to the UNCLOS are examined in detail in the context of previous maritime conflicts between the United States and China.”
Song, Yann-Huei. The Overall Situation in the South China Sea in the New Millennium: Before and After the September 11 Terrorist Attacks. Ocean Development & International Law, Vol. 34, Issue 3-4, 2003.
- “This contribution reviews the overall situation in the South China Sea (SCS) between 2000 and June 2002. A number of important new developments and policy events have occurred during this period, including: the expansion of India’s military presence from the Indian Ocean into the SCS; the efforts taken by Japan to promote cooperation in the SCS to deal with maritime security issues; the increase of military exercises conducted by both the claimants and nonclaimants in the SCS; the improvement of diplomatic relationships among the claimants, in particular, between China and the member states of ASEAN; the election of George W. Bush as U.S. President; the EP-3 incident and the September 11 terrorist attacks….”
South China Sea, GlobalSecurity.org
- Overview, maps, and statistics on the South China Sea and its islands
South China Sea Informal Working Group, Managing Potential Conflicts in the South China Sea
The South China Sea Informal Working Group at the University of British Columbia, Canada provides a fourm for Track II discussions about the jurisdictional conflicts in the South China Sea. This website provides detailed reports and information about meetings, seminars and workshops about the South China Sea organized by the Research and Development Agency in Indonesia, along with the Department of Foreign Affairs.
South China Sea, US Department of Energy, Energy Information Agency, Analysis Brief
- “The South China Sea is rich in natural resources such as oil and natural gas, but ownership of the resources is in dispute. The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) has not yet resolved ownership disputes in the South China Sea. The 1982 convention created a number of guidelines concerning the status of islands, continental shelves, exclusive economic zones (EEZ), enclosed seas, and territorial limits. UNCLOS states that countries with overlapping claims must resolve them by good faith negotiation.“
Spratly Islands, CIA World Factbook
- Basic information on the geography, society, economy, transportation, and security of the Spratly Islands. Sample: “The Spratly Islands consist of more than 100 small islands or reefs. They are surrounded by rich fishing grounds and potentially by gas and oil deposits. They are claimed in their entirety by China, Taiwan, and Vietnam, while portions are claimed by Malaysia and the Philippines. About 45 islands are occupied by relatively small numbers of military forces from China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam. Brunei has established a fishing zone that overlaps a southern reef, but has not made any formal claim.” Last update: December 2011.
The Spratly Islands Dispute, American University, Inventory of Conflict and Environment (ICE) 1997
- Case #21 in the American University, Inventory of Conflict and Environment, Trade & Environment Database of categorized case studies on conflict and the environment.
Stenseth, Leni. The Imagined China Threat in the South China Sea. University of Oslo.
- “Some argue that China’s policy is driven by a national ambition to take control of the entire Spratly area by military means. But is this really China’s intention?”
Studeman, Michael, Calculating China’s Advances in the South China Sea/ Identifying the Triggers of “Expansionism,” Naval War College Review, 1998.
- “This article examines circumstances surrounding China’s occupation of nine reefs in the Spratly island group in 1988, 1992, and 1995, in support of the thesis that economic threats have been the triggers for China’s appropriation of territory in the South China Sea.” Keywords: PLAN, Mischief Reef, petroleum
Student-Faculty Collaborative Research Projects Online in the South China Sea WWW VL
-Middlebury College, 1999-2008
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- Examines five major issues: 1. Conflicting territorial claims to the numerous islands and reefs in the region, in particular, the Spratly Islands and Paracel Islands, 2. conflicting claims to potential oil and natural gas reserves around these islands, 3. maintenance of freedom of navigation in the face of rising shipping traffic, 4. piracy and sea robbery, and5. environmental pollution and resource depletion issues. How cooperative or confrontational has China been in resolving these conflicts in the South China Sea?
Tensions in the South China Sea have been rising in recent years due to two major factors. The first is the growing competition for scarce resources, especially hydrocarbons and fisheries. The other factor is the seemingly intractable disputes over sovereignty claims in the South China Sea. Given the high degree of regional economic inter-dependence, it is not surprising that there have been numerous incidents and conflicts involving survey vessels and fishing boats on the seas. However, there are still no routine or well-tested ways to resolve these low-level but frequent conflicts. These issues are discussed below, along with a consideration of the prospects for joint resource management for the Scarborough Shoal.