Surely you have heard the news — China has been dredging up coral reefs and creating artificial islands in the South China Sea with the purpose of enforcing their claims to “indisputable sovereignty” of their “Nine Dash Line”, and has defiantly continued to do so in the face of legal condemnation by the Hague’s Permanent Court of Arbitration. While the reactions of the United States and other nations to China’s island-building campaign have been vocal, some U.S. analysts and experts have been largely dismissive of the new islands’ potential effects on the regional balance of power.
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