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Flashpoints

Will China’s military rival the United States’ in the Pacific? Will Japan abandon the constitutional fetters on its own military? How will India respond to the String of Pearls strategy? The Diplomat has put together a team of leading analysts to offer must-read, regular commentary on the big defence and security issues in the Asia-Pacific.

Will Gotabaya Revisit Sri Lanka’s Hambantota ‘Debt Trap’ With China?
November 19, 2019

Will Gotabaya Revisit Sri Lanka’s Hambantota ‘Debt Trap’ With China?

By Ankit Panda
The new president’s election manifesto pledged to “revisit” the 99 year lease transfer of Hambantota port.

China’s Indigenous Carrier Transits Taiwan Strait
November 18, 2019

China’s Indigenous Carrier Transits Taiwan Strait

By Ankit Panda
The transit comes shortly after President Tsai Ing-wen announced her running mate.
US Defense Secretary: US Could Alter Military Drills to Boost North Korea Talks
November 15, 2019

US Defense Secretary: US Could Alter Military Drills to Boost North Korea Talks

By Associated Press
Mark Esper said that he is open to the possibility of altering U.S. military activities in South Korea if it would help advance a diplomatic deal with North Korea.

US Intermediate-Range Missiles in East Asia: Critical Deterrent or Needless Provocation?
November 15, 2019

US Intermediate-Range Missiles in East Asia: Critical Deterrent or Needless Provocation?

By Steven Stashwick
It isn’t clear that the United States necessarily needs land-based intermediate missiles to achieve the missions they are envisioned for.

Vietnam Needs to ‘Struggle’ More in the South China Sea
November 15, 2019

Vietnam Needs to ‘Struggle’ More in the South China Sea

By Derek Grossman
Assessing Hanoi’s strategy after the Vanguard Bank standoff with China.

Authoritative North Korean Statement Warns US of ‘Greater Threat’ If Talks Fail
November 14, 2019

Authoritative North Korean Statement Warns US of ‘Greater Threat’ If Talks Fail

By Ankit Panda
In a rare move, the statement was attributed to a spokesman for the powerful State Affairs Commission of North Korea.

Chinese National Pleads Guilty to Stealing Trade Secrets From US Petroleum Company
November 13, 2019

Chinese National Pleads Guilty to Stealing Trade Secrets From US Petroleum Company

By Ankit Panda
Hongjin Tan, a 35-year-old Chinese national, is charged with stealing trade secrets from a U.S. petroleum company.
India to Kick off Military Exercise Involving 40,000 Troops Near Pakistan’s Border
November 13, 2019

India to Kick off Military Exercise Involving 40,000 Troops Near Pakistan’s Border

By Franz-Stefan Gady
A corps level exercise of the Indian Army will be held from November 13 to 18 in Rajasthan.

Death of a Caliph: The Islamic State in Khorasan Province After al-Baghdadi
November 13, 2019

Death of a Caliph: The Islamic State in Khorasan Province After al-Baghdadi

By Saurav Sarkar
ISKP continues to pose a real threat to Afghanistan, despite al-Baghdadi’s death.

China Warns Vietnam to Not ‘Complicate’ South China Sea Dispute By Seeking Legal Arbitration
November 09, 2019

China Warns Vietnam to Not ‘Complicate’ South China Sea Dispute By Seeking Legal Arbitration

By Ankit Panda
Beijing warned Hanoi to not “complicate matters.”

Is India Ready to the Play the Role in Asian Geopolitics That the US Has Long Sought?
November 08, 2019

Is India Ready to the Play the Role in Asian Geopolitics That the US Has Long Sought?

By Robert Farley
In what ways will India's capabilities benefit the strategic interests of the United States and its allies and partners?
How Ulysses S. Grant Helped Solidify the American Position in East Asia
November 07, 2019

How Ulysses S. Grant Helped Solidify the American Position in East Asia

By Robert Farley
Grant's efforts may have changed the course of America's engagement with Asia.

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