In this week’s episode of The E.R., FP’s David Rothkopf, Seyward Darby, Rosa Brooks, and Kori Schake debate the recent ruling from the International Court of Justice regarding China’s claims of sovereignty in the South China Sea. The panel starts with the first, most salient question: What does this judgment actually mean when it comes to China’s cooperation? Yes, the committee at The Hague holds significant authority, but is its ruling really enforceable? The panel has a spirited discussion on whether or not this will change China’s behavior in the South China Sea or if Beijing will act only in its national interests, as the United States and Russia have done before, when it comes to the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea.
With the upcoming U.S. presidential elections, the panel then turns to what the Chinese think about the campaign so far and which of the two candidates they would like to see as the next U.S. president. Why is it that so many people in China feel that having a Republican in office will serve their country better in terms of trade and economics? And why does Donald Trump’s wealth seem to matter? And, finally, the panel looks at how the future U.S. president might redefine America’s role in the Asia-Pacific region.