Australia, UK, and the US are committed. China is threatening. And France is pissed. It’s an international soap opera of epic proportions taking place in one of the most important stretches of water in the world; the South China Sea, home to vital trade routes and a whole lot of oil and gas reserves. China has been creating islands in the region that’s become the key (water)front in potential cold war between Beijing and the West. A new alliance, “known as Aukus, was announced by US President Joe Biden, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his Australian counterpart Scott Morrison on Wednesday.” US and UK face backlash over Australia defense deal.

+ What’s the Auckus ruckus all about? “France will lose a nearly $100 billion deal to build diesel submarines for Australia under the terms of the initiative … But French and European Union officials went further, saying the agreement calls into question the entire cooperative effort to blunt China’s growing influence.” Biden angers France, EU with new Australia, UK initiative. “Some have compared Biden’s recent actions to those of his predecessor, Donald Trump, under Trump’s America First’ doctrine.” (OK, that’s Aukward…)

+ I rarely give homework over the weekend, but this is probably a good time to brush up on the topic. Here’s a quick video: Why is everyone fighting over the South China Sea?