Weekend Roundup: Showdown Between the U.S. and China at Mischief Reef

Trouble is brewing between the U.S. and China over the aptly named Mischief Reef and other islets in the South China Sea, which China claims. The contretemps over these tiny shoals is an early proxy battle for the grand contest of the 21st century between the rising power of China and the established American world order.

Writing this week from Beijing, Yanmei Xie argues that the U.S. should be defending a global commons in the South China Sea, not naval supremacy. Shen Dingli writes from Shanghai that China has every right to “build sovereignty” there. Harvard professor and former chair of the CIA’s National Intelligence Council, Joe Nye, says the U.S. should stick to its long-standing policy of not getting involved in territorial disputes in Asia.

For the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square crackdown 26 years ago this week, we publish these never-before-seen photos. WorldPost China Correspondent Matt Sheehan reports from China this week on the tragedy of the capsized cruise ship in the Yangtze River and, in a lighter turn, the hippie-go-lucky Ultimate Frisbee culture among Chinese youth. China Youthology’s Hannah Lincoln writes from Beijing that China’s youth are turning away from luxury brands, which they see as associated with elitism and corruption.

Prominent Indian analyst Samir Saran makes the case for why the coming Asian Century might belong to India, not China. Former British Prime Minister and UN Special Envoy for Global Education Gordon Brown laments the suffering of Nepalese children as appeals for post-earthquake assistance to rebuild schools fall short.

Writing from La Paz, former Bolivian President Jorge Quiroga scores the mismanagement of Venezuela by President Nicolás Maduro and looks forward to his defeat —> Read More