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Of Tensions, Escalations, Triggers and Inevitable Events

Tensions between nations -  big, small, rising and developing, along with national tensions between governments and their people, have escalated with alarming frequency across our World. 

Today, the tension that existed in Ukraine from Russian menacing, has moved beyond escalation and has reached a level where the impact of many triggers could push that country into civil war; or witness further Russian incursions onto Ukraine sovereign territory; or achieve some stability with the help of NATO. Ukraine simply is incapable of gaining stability alone. Referendums, by pro Russian factions seeking to break away from Kiev, amount to additional triggers in the Ukraine crisis even as a national vote, which now seems impossible, looms on May 25; and against a background of news from Moscow, that Putin intends to deploy new submarines and warships to its Black Sea fleet, part of which is based in Crimea. 

Compounding our current affairs today is China's new aggression on the South China Sea, where, since last weekend, China has unilaterally started oil drilling in Vietnamese waters. Vietnam has protested and has requested talks with Beijing, but as of this morning, Beijing had not respond to its old friend Vietnam. Meanwhile, China has banned other vessels from within two miles of its drilling operations in Vietnamese waters. Tran Duy Hai, Vietnam's deputy head of the national border committee, has complained that: "On May 4, Chinese ships intentionally rammed two Vietnamese Sea Guard vessels...Chinese ships, with air support, sought to intimidate Vietnamese vessels. Water cannon was used." In mounting this aggression against a weaker Vietnam, China, has picked a small player to humble into Beijing's expansion. Though International Conventions allot to sovereign nations a 200-mile exclusive economic zone out from their land borders, China has laid claim to almost the entire South China Sea. China has claimed some "nine-dash" line historical map as proof of its claim to the South China Sea. In acting in this manner, China has determined that Beijing will abide only by Chinese interpretations of law and not by International Conventions like the rest of the World. China's aggression with respect to this recent spat with Vietnam, has brought to the triggering phase, previous tensions on the South China Sea. 

Moreover, with regards China's aggression against the Philippines -  an ally of the United States(US), which President Barrack Obama has just reassured that the US will defend against attacks; China will now tread more carefully. Late last year, the Philippines asked for help in fending off China's incursions into Philippine waters. As US and Philippine forces are engaged in military exercises, the Philippines maritime police yesterday, took a Chinese fishing boat and crew of 11 into custody for fishing in Philippine waters. The Philippines has confirmed finding more than 350 turtles on the vessel in light of the fact that many turtles in the seas around the Philippines are protected under Philippine law. Some of the turtles were already dead, Reuters reported this morning. The Philippines also took a Philippine fishing vessel into custody that was carrying a cargo of some 70 turtles. China is demanding the Philippines release the vessel and crew. 

Tensions could be harnessed but ever so long; escalations usually ensue and inevitable conflict result. Events on the South China Sea fuel by China's aggression onto the sovereignty of other nations, underscore the degree of escalation of tensions to a triggering point. Nobody likes nor wishes war, but the integrity of the sovereignty of peoples must be safeguarded and protected.