The Transformation of Security in the Asia/Pacific Region (Strategic Studies S)

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9780714646619: The Transformation of Security in the Asia/Pacific Region (Strategic Studies S)
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The security architecture of the Asia/Pacific region is in a profound transformation. Such changes are not without problems, which are discussed here.

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The security architecture of the Asia/Pacific region is in the process of profound transformation, partly occasioned by the end of the Cold War and partly due to the dynamic economic developments in East and Southeast Asia. The changes underway in the region amount to a very mixed picture. On the positive side, there is the collapse of the Soviet threat, the high rates of economic growth and levels of economic interdependence, the moves toward democratization, and the general acceptance of the need for enhanced multilateral cooperation. However, these changes have conduced to greater uncertainty and complexity in the regional security environment. Multipolarity is more fluid than bi-polarity. Interdependence can serve as a transmission belt for spreading security problems throughout the region. Democratization can reduce decisional flexibility and constrain negotiation and crisis management. There remain numerous issues of disputation, involving competing territorial claims and challenges to governmental legitimacy, some of which could potentially escalate to major regional conflict. Most countries in the region are energetically modernizing their defence forces, raising the possibility of a regional arms race. Some countries are acquiring particular new technologies (such as ballistic missiles) or weapons of mass destruction (such as nuclear or chemical weapons) which are extremely disturbing. This volume includes 12 contributions from both well-established and newer scholars of Asia/Pacific security matters. They are scholars who either live or work extensively in the region.

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