The Philippine and Vietnamese navies will hold a beach party to bond over their common mistrust of China, and forget — just for a day — their mistrust of each other.
Reuters reports that in June a delegation from the Philippine navy will travel to the disputed island of Southwest Cay, currently held by Vietnam. There, sailors from the two navies will drink beer, listen to music and play volleyball in celebration of their improved relations.
The islet is part of the disputed Spratly Islands, of which parts are claimed by the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, Taiwan and China. The beach party symbolizes the way in which smaller countries have had to find new alliances in order to contain China’s growing might.
Southwest Cay was cunningly seized from the Philippines by Vietnam 40 years ago, when its Philippine occupiers left it momentarily to visit another island. However, these days the two nations share concerns over China’s assertiveness and recently agreed to expand cooperation. China warned them not to do joint military exercises, so a barbecue and beach volleyball will have to do for now.
- Why Cell Phone Reception Is Getting Worse
- The Dirty Secrets of Alternative Plastics
- Israeli Family Celebrates Release of Hostage Grandmother
- We Should Get Paid for Our Online Data: Column
- The COP28 Outcomes Business Leaders Are Watching For
- The 100 Must-Read Books of 2023
- The Top 100 Photos of 2023
- Want Weekly Recs on What to Watch, Read, and More? Sign Up for Worth Your Time