The papers in this volume demonstrate a variety of views about what is happening at sea in the Asia-Pacific region, but there is widespread agreement that the region is a very maritime one and that geostrategic considerations largely determine the distinctive policies that the many countries of the region adopt. Perhaps for that reason, history and the continuing sensitivity it generates, is crucial. There is, however, much diversity of view about the nature and immediate significance of the American ‘rebalance’ towards the Asia-Pacific region, and what its long-term consequences will be for the developing relationship between Washington and Beijing. Recommendations about how both sides should handle the economic, political and military dimensions of this relationship abound. In this debate the tensions between China’s anti-access/area-denial strategies and the Pentagon’s ‘Air-Sea Battle’ response will be crucial. While very aware of such dangers, the region’s leaders nonetheless realize that continued peace, not least at sea, is the greatest stake of all because that is what their prosperity and political survival depends on.


Security Sector Reform Political Survival Strait Time Nuclear Weapon State Yasukuni Shrine 
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© Geoffrey Till 2015

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