The world knows there are troubled waters in the South China Sea. This vital sea has long been regarded as a major source of tension and instability in Asia. The tense geopolitical standoff between China and Vietnam continues to create confusion for many observers since both nations invoke both history and international law to justify their respective claims of sovereignty. The complex and deeply rooted relationship of these two nations and their prominently argued issues over atolls, oil rigs, exclusive economic zones (EEZs), freedom of navigation, military surveillance, security interests, unexplored vast oil and gas reserves, and fisheries has only succeeded in forging a closer tie between two former enemies: the United States of America and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.
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