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Archive for the tag “regional security”

India And Pakistan Are Quietly Making Nuclear War more Likely

The Pakistan navy is likely to soon place nuclear-tipped cruise missiles on up to three of its five French-built diesel-electric submarines. It has also reached a deal with China to buy eight more diesel-electric attack submarines that can be equipped with nuclear weapons. These are scheduled for delivery in 2028. Even more disturbing, Pakistani military authorities say they are considering the possibility of putting nuclear-tipped cruise missiles on surface vessels like the Zulfiqar.

Read Here – Vox

Small Dots, Large Strategic Areas: US Interests In The South Pacific

Given the rapidly shifting geopolitical landscape – or, more accurately, seascape – of the South Pacific, the region poses several strategic challenges to the US and its allies. As Australian National University’s Joanne Wallis has argued, over the past several years the South Pacific has seen the creation of alternative regional institutions, increasing Chinese investment and strategic focus, diminished New Zealand and Australian influence, and US strategic neglect.

Read Here – The Lowy Institute

A Russian Role In Central Asia That America Can Live With

The ongoing war in Eastern Ukraine casts a long shadow over areas of shared American and Russian interest, making the Obama administration’s 2009 “reset” in relations appear a distant memory. However perceptions have shifted in the intervening six years, common concerns still exist between Washington and Moscow; chief among them: terrorism. For this reason, U.S. officials can look with (quiet) approval to Russia’s pursuit of a more robust security presence in Central Asia.

Read Here – The National Interest

How Israel Can Live With The Iranian Nuclear Agreement

For Israel, the bigger problem with the deal is the omission of guidelines on Iran’s regional activities. Changes to the United Nations Security Council embargos on arms deals and ballistic missile technology, for example, are not conditional on Iranian behavior apart from direct violations of the agreement. This is to be expected, as it is not a peace treaty that could have included provisions governing all the country’s activities in the greater Middle East. Israel, however, considers these activities to be legitimate areas of discussion, since the nuclear program is but one component of Iran’s larger strategic threat to Israel.

Read Here – Foreign Affairs

China’s Stealth Wars

China is subverting the status quo in the South and East China Seas, on its border with India, and even concerning international riparian flows – all without firing a single shot. Just as it grabbed land across the Himalayas in the 1950’s by launching furtive encroachments, China is waging stealth wars against its Asian neighbors that threaten to destabilize the entire region, says Brahma Chellaney.

Read Here – Project Syndicate

China Checks The US Picket Line

The passing year was the People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) first opportunity to get up close and personal with the United States’ pivot back to Asia, the strategic rebalancing that looks a lot like containment.

The PRC spent a lot of 2012 wrestling with contentious neighbors emboldened by the US policy, like Vietnam and the Philippines; combating American efforts to nibble away at the corners of China’s spheres of influence on the Korean peninsula and Southeast Asia; and engaging in a test of strength and will with the primary US proxy in the region, Japan.

Read Here – Asia Times

Fool’s Errand: America’s Pivot to Asia

Turning around a modern naval warship at sea is a slow and difficult process. Turning around whole fleets of warships, aircraft carriers and other air and naval forces, and reorienting defense spending for weapons systems that are typically planned decades in advance, is a lot harder – especially when it’s being done in the context of a widely expected downturn in U.S. military outlays. But that’s what the administration of President Barack Obama is trying to do with the much-touted “pivot” from the Middle East to Asia.

It’s a fool’s errand: far too costly, and politically counterproductive. As an example, already questions are being raised about the $396 billion F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, developed to be the U.S. military’s fighter jet of the future. But the F-35 was designed for a time when the Pentagon was focused on NATO and the Middle East, and according to the New York Times, the F-35 is now “facing concerns about its relatively short flight range as possible threats grow from Asia.”

Read Here – The Diplomat

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