The Shangri-La Dialogue was held over the weekend of June 3 to 5, at where else, Shangri-La Hotel, Singapore.
It was the last chance for the US and China to come to an agreement for resolving issues of the South China Sea.
But there wasn't much hope of that, and instead the representatives for each country took the opportunity to warn or threaten each other.
And of course, the China Apologists took to the comments section of the online newspaper to explain how China was merely asserting her rights, while the US was an interloper interfering in regional matters that were not their concern.
It was propaganda on autopilot.
The rise of China has raised the hopes of the Nanyang Chinese Apologists/Chauvinists in whose eyes the Middle Kingdom can do no wrong. There is no point debating them as their heads are filled with the glory days of China, and their hearts are heavy with the remembered ignominy of China's humiliation at the hands of the Western Imperialist powers of yesterday (about 300 to 50 years ago).
Once you understand that their heads and hearts are firmly anchored in the past, then can you understand their anachronistic response to the present and the future are futile, irrelevant, inappropriate, reactionary, and emotional.
[See Understanding China in 6 parts]
If SG had kept our heads and hearts in the past (or up our arses) at Independence, we would never have progressed as much. Or at all. Instead, we have worked with the British who were our colonial masters, and we invited the Japanese, who occupied Singapore, to invest in our economy.
And we sought new partners and new opportunities.
And we worked as much as we could with Malaysia.
And we grew and we prospered, not by holding grudges or feeling a need to vindicate ourselves, or to even historical scores.
China Apologists have selective tales and anecdotes of Western belligerence, pointing to the West militaristic excursions in Philippines, in Vietnam, and Japan.
And yet, Philippines after kicking the US, their former colonial masters, out of Clark Airbase, and Subic Bay, are now turning to the US. Vietnam after a traumatic war with the US, spontaneously welcomed Obama, and are showing signs of pivoting to the US. Because of China.
And it is not for us to tell China that they should focus on the future. The cooler heads in China (I hope) will know that the future lies ahead, not behind them. Not in rehashing history or attempting to rewrite history. Not in trying to settle old scores, because really, history does not keep score. Only losers keep score.
Which is what the Nanyang Chinese Apologists/Chauvinists are wont to do.
And the Chinese people are also responding with emotions and populist rhetoric that hijacks the policy making process, and puts pressure on the Chinese Government to be more militarily assertive.
That said, there are elements in China that may be that immature. And that is worrying.