J. Michael, writing at The National Interest:
The Chinese leadership is well aware that waging war on two fronts can be disastrous for even the most battle-hardened militaries. But war isn’t what it has in mind, and it will likely go to great lengths to avoid such an outcome: permanent conflict, is instead the current strategy.
With two (or four) different fronts that can be activated almost at will, Beijing has therefore ensured it can satisfy the demands of an increasingly nationalistic public by proving that it is standing up for China’s interests and not backing down despite all the external forces that are conspiring against it.
China’s Response to the South China Sea Arbitration Ruling
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