This chapter discusses the unfolding of the most recent tension from May 2009, when Vietnam submitted to the United Nations its data on the extension of its continental shelf, until the Sino-Vietnamese agreement of October 11, 2011 to resume negotiations and more strictly control expressions of nationalist public opinions. It argues that the dispute over sovereignty to the Spratly islands is not the key to conflict resolution. The chapter argues that conflict resolution is possible, on the basis of international law, and that China and Vietnam have a potential for taking the lead in that endeavour. The chapter concludes that the best way forward for China and Vietnam in the South China Sea may be to combine several venues at the same time: bilateral as well as multilateral talks, and active participation in international attempts to clarify certain aspects of the law of the sea, notably the impact of small islands on the delimitation of maritime zones.