For decades, China has claimed exclusive sovereignty over the South China Sea, citing a 1947 map. But five other countries — Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam — also lay claim to parts of it, and in 2016 an international court struck down Beijing's arguments. Now, for the first time, the United States too has officially supported that ruling. Here's a look at who claims what in one of the world's busiest waterways.
For decades, Beijing has laid claim to vast swaths of the South China Sea, over the objections of its neighbors and even international courts. And until two days ago, the United States had avoided taking a strong stance on the question. Not anymore.
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Ian Bremmer shares his insights on this week's World In (More Than) 60 Seconds:
Number one, Trump vs Fauci. What's going on here?
Well, I mean, you know, it's a health leader who is quite popular across Dems and Republicans in the United States and an environment where President Trump is looking for folks to blame. And, you know, it's hard. China's been a big piece of this but hasn't been adequate in explaining why the red states are now doing so badly, for example. And why it continues to persist beyond Europe. And so, he's looking for others. And Fauci has been the most coherent, the most credible in the Trump administration, but has made mistakes. And certainly, also has been willing to come out and speak independently of the Trump administration, including criticizing the Trump administration in a way that Dr. Birx, for example, or the head of the CDC has not. And that's why you're starting to see anonymous opposition against Fauci. You're seeing some of the campaign proactively say they think Fauci has been a cold shower on the economy and has been Dr. Doom, Mr. No. It's funny, Larry Summers, my friend, was called Dr. Kevorkian by Obama when he was secretary there, because he was always providing the negative outlook. I can't imagine how Larry Summers would survive in the Trump administration right now.