– USNI News – Islanders have the impression they “have been tacked on at the end,” as an “afterthought” when the United States announces a strategy that covers Oceania.
– Bloomberg – A study says climate change will cause 1 million species to go extinct. It could also lead to war.
– The Hill – Would America fight if Iran closes the Persian Gulf to shipping? Confides the Magic 8-Ball: “Signs point to yes.” Presidential administrations of both parties long have reserved the right to use force in the Gulf region when vital diplomatic, economic or military interests are in peril. And they always seem to be in peril in the Gulf.
– War on the Rocks – Beijing’s geopolitical moves continue to obfuscate its larger designs, surprise observers, and render the United States and its allies reactive. The prospect of a Chinese naval base in Cambodia offers a case in point.
– USNI Blog – Russia has been carefully observing the activities of the U.S and British navies in the Black Sea region. It protested through diplomatic channels that the main thrust of Sea Breeze 2018, a Black Sea exercise with Ukraine, was anti-Russian. And according to the Russian Institute of Strategic Research, it was not a coincidence when after Sea Breeze 2017, the United States revealed plans to build a maritime operations center in Ochakiv, a small city located between Crimea and Odessa at the mouth of the Dnieper River.
– CIMSEC – China’s Arctic policy has to be examined in the context of its domestic politics and its geopolitical and geostrategic concerns.
– War on the Rocks – Three major powers — which together account for nearly half of the global economy — are vying for influence in the Indian Ocean arena. India, China, and the United States each view the region through their own geostrategic frameworks, ensuring intense jostling at best or conflict at worst. India has the “Security and Growth for all the Region” framework, a combination of its Act (or Look) East and the Think West policies. China has the Maritime Silk Road, which is half of the Belt and Road Initiative. The United States has the Indo-Pacific Strategy (also known as the Free and Open Indo Pacific), a natural successor to the Asia-Pacific rebalance.
– War on the Rocks – History has time and again highlighted the importance of islands in establishing naval dominance. In the 21st century, maritime affairs have returned to prominence on the geopolitical stage. As countries debate an emerging security architecture in the Indo-Pacific, a key area is missing from the discussion: the role of islands. Much as they did in the past, islands will come to play a critical role in shaping the new order in the Indian Ocean region.
– Financial Review – The winter of a new cold war is coming between the US and China, renowned Hoover Institution and Harvard historian Niall Ferguson warned this week. Winning it might decide the 2020 US election. Losing it might be the end of a US dollar-dominated global financial system, if not worse.
– CNN – The secretive Diego Garcia military base may be 1,000 miles from the nearest continent, but it has all the trappings of a modern American town…
– Time – Amateurs talk tactics, generals talk logistics – is China’s looming demographic crisis a reason why it is not a long term threat to the U.S.?
– Foreign Policy – Robert D. Kaplan argues that the United States and China will be locked in a contest for decades. But Washington can win if it stays more patient than Beijing.
– Army Times – The Kremlin has proved that geographic boundaries can be redrawn without much more than stern words from the West. But absent harsher measures and greater push-back, the former commander of U.S. Army Europe warns that the Russian Federation won’t let up.
– National Interest – James Holmes says trouble with Russia and China top the list.
– USNI Proceedings – Former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd —in his keynote address at the New China Challenge conference in October—considered the strategic competition between the United States and China. This article is adapted from his speech.
– USNI Blog – What is Putin’s government up to? Oddly enough, counterinsurgent theory helps explain Russian motives and actions. So does thermodynamics.
– BBC – Does crisis beckon in the Black Sea? Could Russia and Nato even come to blows?
– CIMSEC – The Sea of Azov is a tiny and small sea that historically has not often earned much strategic attention from the countries that possessed it. However, history reveals that the strategic importance of the sea periodically rises when at least two countries possess the shores of this sea.
– War on the Rocks – What is the future of U.S.-Chinese relations? Will a rising China seek to overturn the U.S.-led international order? What is China doing inside the first island chain? In cyberspace? Orbital space? Is China more like Imperial Germany or is it more like France in the late 19th century? Dean Cheng and Brad Carson explore these questions and many more.
– New York Times Magazine – Saudi Arabia thought a bombing campaign would quickly crush its enemies in Yemen. But three years later, the Houthis refuse to give up, even as 14 million people face starvation.
– RUSI – The House of Commons Defence Committee has released a report looking at defence developments in the High North. It should serve as a timely reminder of defence priorities, both among decision-makers in London and the general public.
– USNI Blog – The Naval War College convened its second “Newport Arctic Seminar” this week to debate “principles of sea power” that ought to regulate interactions in the polar sea and along adjacent seacoasts…
– Washington Post – Robert D. Kaplan says that there is a direct contradiction between Trump’s aggressive economic nationalism and his administration’s commitment to defend the South China Sea. The South China Sea is not the United States’ home waters; it is China’s. Geography still matters. And because the United States is so far away, its only hope is to offer an uplifting regional vision that anchors its military one.
– War on the Rocks – Competition over critical infrastructure isn’t just confined to the maritime realm. In fact, access to airfields is just as essential to allow military aircraft to cover the vast distances across the Indian Ocean. This is why China and its competitors are paying ever more attention to securing access to airfields and to deny access to others.
– National Interest – America pushed Britain out of the Western Hemisphere, more or less, by the turn of the twentieth century. It did so by making itself the strongest contender in the New World, harnessing its burgeoning industrial might to build a navy able to command the waters Washington cared about most.