What do the Falklands, Parsley and Paracel Islands, or, if you please, Malvinas, Laila, and Xisha Islands have in common?  They are treeless rocky slabs of land that don’t have much going for them. And nations are prepared to go to war to get and keep them.

Argentina and Britain famously fought a war over the Falklands in the 1980s, and Morocco and Spain were able to settle their differences over the Parsley Islands without bloodshed back in 2002, but the latest crisis in a long-running territorial feud between China and Vietnam is still taking shape. Indeed, with China allegedly sinking a Vietnamese vessel off the disputed Paracel Islands this week, the estranged allies are likely heading for either a flashpoint or a face-saver. And either way, it’s about far more than who gets to fly their flag on the island – and it has implications for any country that’s fueled by oil and gas. [Read more]

http://wp.me/p4sUqu-vD – Michael’s Blog