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Thread: The End of the Asian Century? East-West Relations in the Age of Trump

  1. #1
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Mar 2006

    Default The End of the Asian Century? East-West Relations in the Age of Trump

    The author Michael Auslin, one of America’s leading foreign policy experts, is promoting his book 'The End of the Asian Century: War, Stagnation, and the Risks to the World’s Most Dynamic Region', with events in London and I expect in the USA. He is an associate professor of history at Yale University. A regular contributor to The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and National Review. Plus an AEI scholar.

    Link to London event (90mins): and this from the "neo-con" organisers, Policy Exchange:
    ....a refreshing, critical perspective on the future of East-West relations in the age of Trump.
    Mixed review following the book being published a few days ago:

    Professor Auslin wrote this short commentary on the need for the UK to be involved in the Asia-Pacific region:

    I'll not comment on that!

  2. #2
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    Aug 2015


    Did Auslin even read this drivel before he wrote it?

    Firstly, there is no specific threat to freedom of navigation nor any closure of air and sea routes in the South China Sea. On the contrary, there are territorial and economic exclusivity disputes around fishing grounds and undersea oil and gas, rather than trade. The vast majority of the trade through the South China Sea benefits China, which conducts 98% of its trade from its ports.

    Secondly, the militarization of disputed features and fake islands is certainly concerning to the other claimants, but is no more threatening to freedom of navigation than the presence of a warship. If China can decide to start sinking foreign ships and downing foreign aircraft, so too can the US, Japan and once HMS Queen Elizabeth takes to the high seas, the UK.

    Thirdly, it may well be right to challenge any state attempting to “dominate the states around it”, but such moral considerations by established great powers contributed to the outbreak of war in 1914. In addition, every other permanent UN Security Council member has been the beneficiary of imperialism after World War II, except China. This is not to say that China deserves to have economic exclusivity over the South China Sea or to regard it as territorial waters, but I would suggest that accommodation by way of resource-sharing is probably the best solution, otherwise, China can simply frustrate all other claimants’ attempts to develop the resources of the SCS. Given China’s dependence on raw materials and the CPC’s dependence on economic growth, it is inconceivable that the meekest Standing Committee would stand idly by as the Philippines, Vietnam or Malaysia gain control of and profit from the SCS’ resources.

    Fourth, China would hardly interfere in a similar dispute between the US and Mexico (Gulf of Mexico) or the UK and Scotland (North Sea) or the UK and Spain (Gibraltar), even though it does brisk trade with the US, Latin America and Europe.

    Fifth, a truly hegemonic China would seek to control the Persian Gulf, given the reliance on Middle Eastern oil imports. If China seals off the SCS for any reason, it can be blockaded at Malacca and the First and Second Island Chains.

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