Barely a month after declaring its Air Defence Identication Zone (ADIF) over the East China Sea, China has upped the stakes in the South China Sea of which it claims 90 per cent. It says foreign vessels now need to obtain permission to fish or survey there. Unauthorised boats that enter Chinese waters could be fined and have their equipment seized. Analysts describe China’s poolicy as salami-slicing whereby Beijing makes one move here and another there, but never enough to provoke direct confrontation. Taiwan says it doesn’t recognise China’s new rules. Vietnam describes them as illegal and groundless. The Philippines is seeking clarification. And what will America do?