U.N. Doesn’t Give America Its “Seat at the Table” in Maritime Disputes

Walter Lohman /

Call it the old “seat at the table” argument. The U.S. Senate should ratify the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), the argument goes, in order to give America “a seat at the table” in resolving maritime disputes. It’s an argument that has been made so many times that even its proponents no longer understand it.

Recent developments in the South China Sea indicate that at best American support for UNCLOS is irrelevant to managing, let alone resolving, disputes in the Western Pacific. (more…)