SCMP review – ‘superb and timely’

SCMP review – ‘superb and timely’

Posted by on Nov 4, 2014 in South China Sea | No Comments

Ben Richardson of the South China Morning Post has given the book a great review. My thanks to him for these fine words, among others, “Hayton makes full use of his trade-craft to spin a page-turning thriller packed with anecdotes, historical characters and eye-witness accounts”. Since the SCMP, more-or-less, overlooks the South China Sea, this […]

US Speaking Tour – October 2014

US Speaking Tour – October 2014

Posted by on Sep 25, 2014 in South China Sea | No Comments

  I will be visiting the northeastern US in the second half of October to talk about the South China Sea. I’m doing about ten talks in all and most of them will be open to the public (although you might need to check or reserve a place in advance). There might even be an opportunity […]

A business angle – interview with BNN

A business angle – interview with BNN

Posted by on Sep 24, 2014 in South China Sea | No Comments

Why the South China Sea matters to business – an interview with the Canadian business channel BNN. Topics included the importance of the US pivot to the region, the overlap between the regional territorial disputes and the wider strategic relationship between the US and China, how much oil and gas is really in the sea? […]

First review – “A splendid book”

First review – “A splendid book”

Posted by on Sep 15, 2014 in South China Sea | No Comments

A really excellent review of the book by The Economist, “Bill Hayton’s splendid book lucidly covers these disputes in all their complexity from virtually every angle—historical, legal, political, economic and strategic. A journalist with the BBC and author of a previous book on Vietnam, he tells a good yarn, even when the topic is as […]

China’s construction boom in the Spratlys

China’s construction boom in the Spratlys

Posted by on Sep 9, 2014 in South China Sea | No Comments

What’s changed as a result of China’s massive construction projects in the Spratly islands? Legally – nothing – but strategically – we wait and see. All the features that the PRC occupies in the Spratlys would be naturally underwater at high tide, so building on them, doesn’t mean they will count as ‘territory’ under international […]

China’s Epic Fail in the South China Sea

China’s Epic Fail in the South China Sea

Posted by on Aug 5, 2014 in South China Sea | No Comments

    By whatever metric you choose, China’s recent oil-drilling adventure in the South China Sea was a disaster. No new oil will reach Chinese consumers, no new maritime territory has been gained and regional advantage has been handed to the United States. ASEAN solidarity has held firm and the positions of ‘pro-Beijing’ forces in […]

China’s false memory syndrome

China’s false memory syndrome

Posted by on Jul 10, 2014 in South China Sea | No Comments

    The nationalist academics and government committees of the first half of the 20th century have bequeathed the Communist Party an “official history” that is demonstrably false. It is this, and not the threat of nationalist mobs on the streets that makes the South China Sea disputes so intractable and dangerous. But to concede […]

Clashes and artificial islands, BBC interview

Clashes and artificial islands, BBC interview

Posted by on Jun 6, 2014 in South China Sea | No Comments

  An interview for BBC World News about developments in the South China Sea – particularly the release by the Vietnamese government of video showing a Chinese ship chasing and sinking a Vietnamese fishing vessel and allegations from the Philippines government that China is constructing new artificial islands in the Spratlys. The interviewer is Kasia […]

China incompetent? The tale of the oil rig

China incompetent? The tale of the oil rig

Posted by on May 19, 2014 in South China Sea, Vietnam | No Comments

            What has China achieved by sending its oil rig to drill off the Paracel Islands? It has managed to rupture relations with its brother communists in Vietnam, incensed Vietnamese popular opinion, generated gigabytes of critical international media coverage, revived the “China Threat” discourse in Southeast Asia and unified ASEAN […]

Vietnam’s protests aren’t just about China

Vietnam’s protests aren’t just about China

Posted by on May 16, 2014 in South China Sea, Vietnam | No Comments

          Dramatic images of Vietnamese workers vandalising Chinese-owned factories appear to be yet more proof that an angry nationalism is taking hold in East and South East Asia. The reality is a little more complex. Although passions are certainly rising over the fate of a few specks of rock in the […]