Asia Pacific

Brief: Russo-China Naval Drills

Background: By many accounts, the bilateral relationship between Russia and China is at an all-time high. It’s welcome news for Beijing and Moscow, and...

The Trouble With China’s Tech Titans

When Jack Ma got slapped down by the Communist Party of China late last year, the natural assumption was that his biggest sin was...

A Picture of China’s Expansion

(click to enlarge) The rapid pace of Chinese growth has expanded the country’s need for natural resources, especially farmland, timber and inputs needed for emerging...

The Road to 2040: A Summary of Our Forecast


Dec. 2, 2015 We look into the future and forecast what the world will look like in a quarter of a century. We predict several disruptions in the global structure by 2040 and conclude that much of the instability over the next 25 years will be focused in the European and Asian continents.

Here is a summary of some of our key predictions for the next 25 years.

The Road to 2040

Dec. 2, 2015 We look into the future and forecast what the world will look like in a quarter of a century. We predict several disruptions in the global structure by 2040 and conclude that much of the instability over the next 25 years will be focused in the European and Asian continents.

Brief: Complications in South Asia

Background: Despite what a map may say, there are large swaths of land throughout South and Central Asia where no one is fully in...

Russia Invests in Southeast Asia

(click to enlarge) This week, Russia’s foreign minister met with the secretary-general of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to discuss relations between Moscow and...

China’s Search for a Negotiated Settlement

Last week, China celebrated the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party. The celebration included a plan for the invasion of Taiwan,...

China, Russia and the Strategy of Indirection

Europe was the primary battleground of the Cold War. NATO adopted a defensive strategy because it saw no value in conquering Eastern Europe and...

Wolf War and Peace

Chinese President Xi Jinping did the unexpected earlier this month during a speech delivered to a Politburo study session: He told his government to...

Daily Memo: Europe Shoots Down Summit With Russia

EU goings-on. On Thursday, the EU rejected a proposal submitted by France and Germany for a summit with Russia. Poland and the Baltics states...

Brief: NATO’s Concerns Over China

Background: NATO has had a bit of an identity crisis ever since the Soviet Union collapsed. Not only is there no longer a primary...

How the Competition Against China Could Improve NATO

Last week, U.S. President Joe Biden started a European tour in the United Kingdom, including a stopover at the G-7 summit. He met with...

Brief: Russia’s Eastward Turn

Background: Russia is following the trend and looking east, hoping to solidify its position on the Northern Sea Route and defend its remote eastern...

Southeast Asia’s Strategic Disunity

Just about any time the Association of Southeast Asian Nations makes news, it seems to be for doing a whole lot of nothing. That's...

Brief: Chinese Warplanes in Malaysian Airspace

Background: China's biggest strategic challenge is preventing foreign powers from using the first island chain to box in Chinese forces or blockade vital Chinese...

COVID-19: Made in China?

In a recent interview, Dr. Anthony Fauci was asked whether he was confident that COVID-19 developed naturally. He has long maintained that though it...

Brief: China’s Growing Role in Central Asia

Background: Over a relatively short period, China has strengthened its position in Central Asia, becoming a key trading partner and investor in what is...

The US and South Korea’s Shaky Alliance

South Korean President Moon Jae-in will arrive in Washington for a state visit this week with the U.S.-South Korean alliance appearing to have regained...

Brief: Why Mexico’s President Is Apologizing to China

Background: When it comes to U.S.-Mexican relations, the U.S. has the advantage in almost every way that matters. Mexico City has few options but...

Recent Articles

East Asia is the world’s most dynamic economic region. Since the early 1980s, annual trans-Pacific trade has outpaced trans-Atlantic trade.

The center of gravity in East Asia is the relationship between the two countries with the region’s largest economies and strongest militaries – China and Japan – and their individual and collective relationships with the United States.

The key to this relationship is China’s internal economic and domestic political situation. When China is unified and strong, as it is at the moment, its influence in the Asian mainland is pervasive, with the peripheral states in southeast Asia looking to Japan and the United States for balance. When China goes through a fragmentary phase, as it did from the mid-19th century until the communists took power in 1949, the peripheral states can at times assert themselves.

Despite some saber-rattling in the South China Sea, East Asia’s challenges in recent years have had more to do with economics than with aggression. But it is important to keep in mind that the last 30 or so years in Asia have been something of an aberration. For most of the 20th century, East Asia was rife with instability and war.

U.S. strategy in East Asia is two-fold. On one hand, the U.S. seeks to maintain a balance of power between Japan and China. On the other hand, the U.S. employs a maritime strategy whereby it cultivates close relationships with island nations in the western Pacific to maintain its control over trade routes and contain the Chinese on the mainland.

Read Regional Assessment

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Required Reads: Asia Pacific

From our 2021 Forecast...

China needs and will search for access to global markets by using intelligence and economic power as political leverage. This will create friction with nations with which it needs economic relations, particularly European countries.

Asia Pacific in our Memos

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Latest Posts

The Volatile Global Food Supply

(click to enlarge) The pandemic has aggravated an already alarming situation regarding the cost and accessibility of food worldwide, as the director general of the...

Daily Memo: The US and Philippines Reportedly Reach Key Deal

Agreement reached. The U.S. and the Philippines may have finally put to rest concerns over one of the biggest threats to their Mutual Defense...

COVID and Cars

We have moved into the true second phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. Previous phases were merely passing bubbles. This one appears real. Until now,...

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