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CHINA DOES AND WILL RESPECT VIETNAMESE INDEPENDENCE, DESPITE VIETNAM HAVING BEEN ONCE A PART OF CHINA|
No, China does not wish Vietnam to become a part of China all over again. That would be too complicated. All China wants, and all Vietnam wants, is for the two separate and independent countries to live in peace, sharing resources their ancestors used to share under one roof, but having two roofs does not mean they cannot share the same courtyard, or the surrounding gardens. This is simpler and more practical.
In 207 BC, Zhao Tuo, a general of the Qin emperor annexed Annam to Nan Yue (which included parts of Yunnan, Guangxi and Guangdong) and established the capital of all these lands in Guangzhou. In 111 BC, the Nan Yue kingdom, already ruled by Chinese generals and magistrates, was defeated by the Han Dynasty which succeeded the Qin Dynasty. For more than a thousand years, Nan Yue, that included An Nam, or Vietnam, was under Chinese sovereignty, up until 938 AD when Vietnamese generals defeated the Chinese forces, but even so, in the next one thousand years, some Vietnamese dynasties allied themselves with China, off and on.
The real traumatic events in Vietnam occurred when the French invaded Vietnam using modern firearms, from 1859 to 1885, using Saigon as their base, with forced indoctrination of the Vietnamese, who were then Buddhist in religion, Confucian in philosophy, and Chinese in culture, to adopt Catholicism and a Western alphabet, which deviated from the norm of Western pronunciation to such an extent that only Vietnamese can translate their Westernized words into Chinese pronunciations. One such example is the most popular surname in Vietnam, being written as Nguyen, but which is pronounced in the old traditional Chinese dialect of Nanyue as "Yun" or "Win (to appease the Western literati), which in Mandarin or Putonghua is pronounced as "Yuan". It can be seen from a phonetic analysis of Vietnamese words that they are actually still being spoken like a Chinese dialect, even though their French rulers have assigned a very different Western alphabet combination for them that failed to be accepted by the public. So, which is the native language of Vietnam? The spoken Vietnamese or the French written alphabet? The answer is a clear vote for the spoken or vernacular Vietnamese, as no Vietnamese uses the rules of French or English pronunciation for even their own names.
But, China and Vietnam need not return to the past in order to achieve a common future. They just have to know the past, without having to return to it. But this understanding gives them the key to the solution to their historically inherited problems of separation and independent sovereignty. One possible solution is to establish a system of equal use of resources without demanding identical citizenships in a defined INCLUSIVE ECONOMIC ZONE, as opposed to the highly divisive (intentional or not) of the Western-based LOS definition of EXCLUSIVE ECONOMIC ZONE. This concept of an INCLUSIVE ECONOMIC ZONE acknowledges there are disputes over the sovereignty over the region in question, with each side claiming absolute sovereignty over the region, but with both sides agreeing to allow a certain number of citizens or ships of the other side to stay and exploit the maritime resources of such an INCLUSIVE ECONOMIC ZONE (IEZ). Quantifying the number of persons, ships, or resources taken from an IEZ allows this concept to be flexible enough to be applied to regions claimed by both but which are not equidistant from both, and which have not been equally used traditionally by both. Quantification also allows a common effort at environmental protection, especially of endangered species, and avoids an exhaustion of maritime resources through overfishing.
So, we can be creative in constructing a hypothetical formula that the share of each country should roughly be equal to:
S = K * (L * P * L/A ) / D^2
S = strength of claim on the exploitable resources of an area in the IEZ of the country in question.
D = distance of that area from the nearest uncontested coastline of the country in question.
L = length of the coastline of the country, measured with rulers of 1 kilometer length.
P = population of the country in question.
A = area of the land mass of the country in question.
K = a coefficient to be determined.
Then, we can inject the factor of environmental protection and resource renewal into the model by first establishing the maximum amount of seafood that can be extracted from a region per year, and next the share of this maximum that each country can take from the region, as follows:
Fv = Fraction due to Vietnam = Sv/(Sv+Sc)*Rmax
Fc = Fraction due to China = Sc/(Sv+Sc)*Rmax
Sv = stregnth of Vietnam's claim
Sc = strength of China's claim
Rmax = maximum amount of maritime resources extractable from the region in question that is environmentally friendly and ecologically sustainable.
Is this the best equation, not really, but it is just one way to start thinking about how to share rather than fight over a sea of resources as two separate independent countries, when politically speaking, there is no way of going back to being simply one country again. This is the rationale of the European Common Market and the European Union. Maybe, Vietnam can learn this lesson from France, that gave it its Western alphabet, that where division fails, unity may be the best solution.