Brittle West Pacific is testing ground for future global geopolitics

China and Russia staged joint military exercises in August 2013 (photo:dpa)
China and Russia staged joint military exercises in August 2013 (photo:dpa)

The West Pacific has become the centre of global political and strategic interactions. China, the United States, Russia and Japan are each defining their future global role in that regional context. All four pursue national strategies which are bound to display ambivalences and none seems capable of achieving hegemonic dominance. Given the multitude of conflicting local and historic claims, tensions and events, and the continuing military build-up in the region, this most important economic growth zone can face disruptive challenges with global economic, political and social consequences.

FOUR of the world’s most powerful nations - China, Russia, Japan and the United States - are see...

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