Has Vietnam Changed the Balance of Power in the South China Sea? (East Sea)

Vietnam has just upped the ante (so to speak) in this part of the world. My news sources here in Russia have expressed the confirmation of this data…

Vietnam signed contracts for the purchases of submarines and planes from the Russian side,” he said without elaborating after Russian arms exporter Rosoboronexport signed an agreement to supply “special material” to the Vietnamese navy.

The Inter-fax news agency said that Russia will sell Vietnam six (6) diesel-electric submarines of “Project 636” type, more widely known under its NATO codename “Kilo”, for a total of around $2 billion. These subs will be built at a rate of one per year until completed at a shipyard in St. Petersburg.

Inter-fax also said that Russia had also discussed a deal for delivery of eight Sukhoi Su-30MK2 jet fighters to Vietnam. With a possibility of twelve more in the future.

Vietnam, China and other countries have longstanding competing claims of sovereignty over parts of the South China Sea, which Vietnam calls the East Sea, including the potentially oil and gas-rich Spratly and Paracel island chains.

Changing the balance of power in this area may take more than a few subs and jets, but Vietnam just purchased a pile of bargaining chips that you can not ignore…

Windows to Russia!
comments always welcome.

PS: The claim that China says they own rights to is the red outline in the sea area. Kinda looks like China went a little crazy when they drew that line. All those other countries got a little bit upset. Oil is one of the roots of all wars…