The floods across China, and especially in Jiangxi province, look to be the worst in decades. In recent days Xi has issued two directives on flood work. Xi probably wants 2020 over as much of the rest of us do. The US State Department announced earlier today that it is “aligning the U.S. position on the PRC’s maritime claims in the SCS with the [Arbitral Tribunal] Tribunal’s decision”. “Sovereignty and territorial integrity 主权和领土完整” is a core PRC interest and this shift strikes at that. Of all the recent US moves against China this may be the one that could provoke the strongest response. But it also may be useful to Xi and the CCP, as it is yet another rallying point for patriotism in the face of US attempts to keep China down and thwart its great rejuvenation.
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