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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 defense and security issues in the Asia-Pacific.

New Rule From US Commerce May Help Limit Spread of North Korean Cybercrime
October 21, 2021

New Rule From US Commerce May Help Limit Spread of North Korean Cybercrime

By Jason Bartlett
How does a new rule barring the export and resale of cyber “intrusion software” to China and Russia without the proper license mitigate the North Korean cyber threat?

Chabahar Port and Iran’s Strategic Balancing With China and India
October 21, 2021

Chabahar Port and Iran’s Strategic Balancing With China and India

By Soroush Aliasgary and Marin Ekstrom
Both China and India seek to use Chabahar port for their own strategic interests. Iran can use that competition to its own advantage.
Pacific Nations Have an Interest in Challenging China’s Expansive Maritime Claims
October 18, 2021

Pacific Nations Have an Interest in Challenging China’s Expansive Maritime Claims

By Phuong Vu
Small island nations have a strong reason to prevent the de facto acceptance of Beijing's interpretations of international law.

The Gaps in the New Regional Security Architecture for the Indo-Pacific
October 16, 2021

The Gaps in the New Regional Security Architecture for the Indo-Pacific

By Hanns W. Maull
The current effort – including AUKUS and the Quad – is missing three critical ingredients compared to early efforts in Cold War Europe.

Explaining the PLA’s Record-Setting Air Incursions Into Taiwan’s ADIZ
October 14, 2021

Explaining the PLA’s Record-Setting Air Incursions Into Taiwan’s ADIZ

By Adrian Ang U-Jin and Olli Pekka Suorsa
Multiple reasons likely contributed to the spike in incursions and sorties in early October.

The Shift in China-US Competition
October 13, 2021

The Shift in China-US Competition

By Hoang Vu and Thuc D Pham
The change from all out to “responsible” competition presents an opportunity for the Indo-Pacific. 

The German Elections and Angela Merkel’s China Legacy
October 13, 2021

The German Elections and Angela Merkel’s China Legacy

By Frederick Kliem
A new government must re-adjust Germany’s China approach. Fortunately, the likely new coalition is well-placed to do so.
Unpacking Claims of Secret North Korean Intelligence Operations
October 12, 2021

Unpacking Claims of Secret North Korean Intelligence Operations

By Jason Bartlett
North Korean intelligence capabilities, tactics, and targets have evolved over the decades.

COVID-19 Is Reshaping Global Pharmaceutical Competition – to Asia’s Benefit
October 08, 2021

COVID-19 Is Reshaping Global Pharmaceutical Competition – to Asia’s Benefit

By Hannah Elyse Sworn
The valuable experience gained by Asian companies during the pandemic could upset the West’s monopoly in high-value drugs more generally, with implications for global access to medicines.

In Numbers: Urbanization and Climate Change in the Asia-Pacific
October 08, 2021

In Numbers: Urbanization and Climate Change in the Asia-Pacific

By Diplomat Risk Intelligence
A new DRI Trendlines report describes, among other things, how climate change and urbanization interact in the Asia-Pacific, leading to new traditional and non-traditional security risks.

How AUKUS Could Enhance Philippine Strategic Culture
October 07, 2021

How AUKUS Could Enhance Philippine Strategic Culture

By Joshua Bernard Espeña and Don McLain Gill
The nation's policymakers recognize the convergences between the new trilateral partnership and their own security needs.
What Do Taiwanese Think of China’s Record-Setting Incursions Into Taiwan’s ADIZ?
October 06, 2021

What Do Taiwanese Think of China’s Record-Setting Incursions Into Taiwan’s ADIZ?

By Brian Hioe
Chinese military aircraft have broken consecutive records in the past week. What message is Beijing trying to send, and is it being received as intended?

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