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China Builds Artificial Islands In South China Sea 192

Posted by samzenpus
from the mine-now-I-take-it dept.
An anonymous reader writes about a Chinese building project designed to cement claims to a disputed region of the South China Sea. Sand, cement, wood, and steel are China's weapons of choice as it asserts its claim over the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea. China, the Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam, Taiwan, and Brunei have sparred for decades over ownership of the 100 islands and reefs, which measure less than 1,300 acres in total but stretch across an area about the size of Iraq. In recent months, vessels belonging to the People's Republic have been spotted ferrying construction materials to build new islands in the sea. Pasi Abdulpata, a Filipino fishing contractor who in October was plying the waters near Parola Island in the northern Spratlys, says he came across "this huge Chinese ship sucking sand and rocks from one end of the ocean and blasting it to the other using a tube."

Artificial islands could help China anchor its claim to waters that host some of the world's busiest shipping lanes. The South China Sea may hold as much as 11 billion barrels of oil and 190 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, according to a 2013 report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration. China has considered the Spratlys—which it calls Nansha—part of its territory since the 1940s and on occasion has used its military might to enforce its claim. In 1988 a Chinese naval attack at Johnson South Reef, in the northern portion of the archipelago, killed 64 Vietnamese border guards.
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China Builds Artificial Islands In South China Sea

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  • All wars ... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ColdWetDog (752185) on Sunday June 22, 2014 @11:02PM (#47295783) Homepage

    Are resource wars.

    And start out rather like this.

  • by K. S. Kyosuke (729550) on Sunday June 22, 2014 @11:04PM (#47295789)
    ...why we really need to get weaned off of fossil fuels. Otherwise it's like the next day's heroin fix, only with oil.
  • Re:All wars ... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by K. S. Kyosuke (729550) on Sunday June 22, 2014 @11:21PM (#47295839)

    Clearly you're too young to remember the Cold War, a war of Ideology.

    So...it was a war for human resources? :-)

  • Re:All wars ... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by AHuxley (892839) on Monday June 23, 2014 @12:28AM (#47296035) Homepage Journal
    Re "Are resource wars."
    China has learned from history and will not allow its own well funded emerging brands, own exporters and needed imports to be contained, slowed and encircled like the Soviet Union was.
    China has to ensure its own flagged ships can move freely to bring value added Chinese branded finished goods to any market globally without any interference.
    China can see it is been rapidly encircled by regional tame puppet governments and dictated one sided treaties again.
    China has to be able to diplomatically and politically show land use and possession that it will not be reduced China to the role of foreign branded factories and limited shared export earnings.
    China is been confronted, contained in Africa, South America and Asia over raw materials. A lot of effort went into trade and aid resulting in real progress and infrastructure as a gift from China. Other nations linked basic food aid to post colonial political lectures.
    The EU seems more open to lucrative high technology transfers that China is working to expand.
    China still has a few years to build on the image and branding of its own quality, price competitive brands globally. Until then it is more dependant on whim of outside forces. China also has to contain foreign backed NGO's, environmental groups, separatist and well funded faith based groups trying to distract and alter its plans for growth.
    A huge diaspora is able to bring any technology back as it is been developed in any advanced country, for almost free.
    China just has to build its own brands in time - low cost, disruptive on price, good quality and stop renting tech with every product sold (foreign set expensive codecs, standards).
    China is in a global race to get its own products to a waiting global market. ie AC this has an ongoing effort since the 1960's over many generations and via different nations for trade, energy and jobs. Other nations opt to spend their gold on weapons, ever more distant wars or deceptive political charity.
  • Occupation (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 23, 2014 @01:38AM (#47296189)

    The islands belong to whoever lives there and manages to chase others away. If China successfully put troops and guns on them, then the islands are theirs, end of story.

  • by shutdown -p now (807394) on Monday June 23, 2014 @03:00AM (#47296361) Journal

    In the event of a nuclear war between US and China, Russia would fetch popcorn and watch the show. It would be an epic win on all counts - the major potential adversary with a large land border and a likelihood of future conventional conflict completely annihilated, and another major potential adversary significantly weakened and likely going isolationist for decades to come to lick its wounds. Meanwhile, Eastern Europe without US as a de facto guarantor of security would be having a real fun time dealing with Russia in such a new reality.

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