Saturday, July 30, 2016

Realism has to prevail in the South China Sea

George N. Tzogopoulos, "Realism has to prevail in the South China Sea,"

image from article
The recent ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) on the South China Sea is perceived in the Western media discourse as a "victory" for the Philippines and a "defeat" for China. Idealists might be keen on urging Beijing to comply with the decision according to their own interpretation of how countries have to behave in the international arena. Nonetheless, similar cases in the past demonstrate that the notion of idealism has been more applicable in academia and the intellectual debate rather than in day-to-day politics where realism prevails. There is no better figure for this approach than former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. ...
[T]he dilemma over which foreign policy ideology has to prevail in the case of the South China Sea following the recent ruling seems here to be almost non-existent. While idealism can only serve public diplomacy purposes and jeopardize peace, realism might lead to necessary compromises and guarantee a better future. China will be among the actors to define this future. ...

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