“The truth about the South China Sea issue” is the title of an article written by Uncle Redbean that TRE republished.
A TRE reader, Bernard K (Any relation of TRE hero Chris K?) commented on how Uncle Redbean misquoted a UN spokesperson, and twisted facts. As Uncle Redbean has not responded so far (Waiting for Beijing ro tell him what to say?), I produce the comments below this box.
No historical maps
But Bernard K was not the only person to diss Uncle Redbean and not get a response.
“Dinners are just dinners”, another TRE reader, is absolutely right about the origins of the “dashes in the sea”: it only originated in 1947 by of all people the KMT. It’s not based on any ancient Chinese map, something Uncle Redbean implies. A few years ago I flipped through a book of essays by HK academics on China’s maritime boundaries from ancient times to the Late Sung dynasty. The conclusion of the essays was that China in the period in question never had territorial claims to the South China Sea.
And given the expansionist maritime policies of the Yuan (invaded Java and Japan) and Ming dynasties (Cheng Ho’s voyages), that followed, there are no maps from that period laying claim to the South China Sea.
Dinners are just dinners:
July 27, 2016 at 10:15 pm (Quote)
Redbean is plain wrong. He describes some Proclamations and Declarations as Treaties when they are not. Proclamations and Declarations do not carry the same weight under International Law as Treaties.
The Qing Dynasty never had the 9 Dash Line nor the 11 Dash Line, so what weight does the claim hold? It would be different if you can find a genuine Qing Dynasty map showing the 9 Dash Line or the 11 Dash Line and Qing Dynasty records on a claim to these waters, reefs and shoals. Many historians know the KMT came up with the 11 Dash Line and the CCP came up with the 9 Dash Line – these boundary claims are modern inventions. It does not mean that they are recognised internationally or by the various claimants.
If a country starts drawing dashes on maps and claiming reefs and shoals, does that mean that they automatically belong to that country. It is leads to success in territorial claims, every country will be producing maps with lots of Dash Lines to claim islands, reefs and shoals at the expense of their neighbouring countries.
What is telling is the land reclamation works. If the claim was so strong, there would not be the need to carry out such extensive land reclamation works. These works are deliberately designed to strengthen the claim. The correct position is that PRC’s claim is weak at best and the reclamation works are illegal. The original position should be restored as should the destroyed coral reefs.
China has just lost a lot of international goodwill over the issue and will likely lose more.
Die-hard supporters of China will just spout or parrot their foreign affairs spokesman. Just rubbish without proper consideration of international law. Who can ever trust Beijing? Look at their human rights record.
Rating: +3 (from 3 votes)
July 25, 2016 at 7:02 pm (Quote)
Tsk tsk Redbean. Talk about stubborn. Again, picking the words of the UN spokesman out of context is disingenuous. You have deliberately left out the first part of his answer and left out the latter part of the second part (after I have already given u the link). Context and link.
Question: Thank you, Stéphane. As you know, the court… the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague ruled against China in the China Philippines dispute on the Law of the Sea. Do you think it has implications for other parties to similar disputes in the South China Seas?
Spokesman: Well, you know, we’re obviously aware of the decision rendered by the Tribunal, WHICH WAS ESTABLISHED under Annex VII of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. The Secretary General has consistently called on all parties to resolve their disputes in the South China Sea in a peaceful and amicable manner through dialogue and in conformity with international law, including the UN Charter. It remains important to avoid actions that would provoke or exacerbate those tensions. Yes?
Question: Following up on the South China Sea. Are every concerned countries advised to abide by the decision by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague?
Spokesman: You know, the UN doesn’t have a position on the legal and procedural merits of the case or on the disputed claims. And, you know, as for the details concerning the settlements of disputes mechanism under the Convention of the Law of the Sea that are set forth in paragraph… in Part XV and relevant annexes to that treaty; thus, the Secretary General does not have anything to add in this regard. Mr. Lee?
The last para taking into context means that the Sec-Gen has nothing to add but that the settlements are in Part XV & relevant annexes of UNCLOS. Meaning that UN has no legal and procedural merits except as stated in Part XV & relevant annexes of UNCLOS. If this was not a UN backed Tribunal, why would he even answer much less refer time and again to various Annex and mechanisms of UNCLOS?
You have UNCLOS procedures adhered to, you have ITLOS selecting the Tribunal, you have UN spokesman…..if it looks like a duck, walks liked one, quacks liked one, but oh no, to you it is a chicken.
Rating: -13 (from 19 votes)
July 25, 2016 at 7:09 pm (Quote)
Secondly, if you notice, Xinhua the MSM of China, had at no time make the claim that the tribunal is not UN backed up to the verdict on 12 Jul, and about 5 to 6 days after that then they came out with this new angle precisely to target gullible readers. Before that Xinhua had multiple interviews with ‘experts’ that disagree with the Tribunal but never a claim that it was not UN backed.
Thirdly, UNCLOS Annex VII cases arbitrated under the auspices of the PCA is not that novel. There were/are 12 cases using PCA under UNCLOS. Including one bwt Singapore and Malaysia: Malaysia v. Singapore, instituted in July 2003 and terminated by an award on agreed terms rendered on September 1, 2005 – Land Reclamation by Singapore in and around the Straits of Johor (Malaysia v. Singapore).
And if this is a US/Japan vs China saga, then don’t victimize Asean members, why don’t China go build something nearer America liked in the Hawaii Islands? Or even do it to Japan? And why don’t China sue Philippines using ICJ? Why asking only for bilateral talks only?