I feel that beyond the channels of normal, conventional diplomacy, a good old-fashioned show of force can have the desired effect. As well as deterring enemy countries these acts of sabre rattling also raise the morale of the military forces involves and reassure the public that they serve that their country is ready to defend them.
If such an action were effective, it wouldn't even be necessary to do it to begin with. It is totally ineffective because China is well aware of the character of the U.S. Commander in Chief. They are willing to fight us, they are feeling their muscles bulging, and they know our leader is a pusillanimous weakling, incapable of action. His little token actions in the Middle East do not impress any of our adversaries. They simply show him to be a media driven phony.
No, the use of force in the South China Sea is not an effective deterrent for communist and enemy countries. Shows of force such as these are viewed by enemies as hostile actions against them. As a result, these enemy countries may feel threatened by these displays, and these shows of force could lead to retaliation.
The U.S. Air Force recently launched three bombers at once int he South China Sea in a visible spot in the Pacific. Since the view of these three bombers, China reacted by attempting to create a "no sail zone" in Japan's territorial water and then flew their own bombers over the islands the two countries have been disputing over. China is essentially taking a look at what the U.S. is doing and making it a point to to use their own bombers as a means of retaliation and intimidation against Japan. China's behavior proves that shows of force will only cause them to react negatively in an attempt to prove to themselves that they still hold some kind of power.
Launching three bombers in the South China Sea will not be an effective deterrent against communism or potential adversaries in the region. This is such a small show of force that it is really more of a token than a military plan. Instead, the United States and Asian partners should work to form a strong defense against potential aggression in the South China Sea.