India’s non-alignment ship hasn’t sailed yet

Author: Darshana M. Baruah, Observer Research Foundation

Since Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power, India has developed a distinct maritime outlook in its diplomacy and security policy. For years, there was a lack of political will to look toward India’s maritime interests. Read more…

Fighting insurgency on the India–Myanmar border

An Indian Border Security force soldier patrols in the Indian state of Assam. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Rahul Mishra, ICWA

On 31 March 2016, a tribunal set up by the Indian government upheld a ban on the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (Khaplang) (NSCN(K)) for five years. The case pertains to the 4 June 2015 attacks carried out by NSCN(K) insurgents on Indian military personnel, which claimed the lives of 18 Indian soldiers. Read more…

Trouble at sea for the US and its Asian allies

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump waves to the crowd during a campaign stop at the First Niagara Center, in Buffalo, USA, April 18, 2016. (Photo: AAP).

Author: James Curran, University of Sydney

In the capitals of America’s Asian allies, two phenomena are combining to intensify already uneasy relations with Washington. The first is China’s continued assertiveness in the South China Sea. Beijing’s militarisation of these contested territories Read more…

Need to face the facts in Asia

President Barack Obama listens to Chinese President Xi Jinping's opening remarks during their joint news conference in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington on 25 September 2015. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Hugh White, ANU

The Obama administration has never plainly acknowledged that it faces a major challenge from China to the US-led order in Asia, and it has therefore never clearly explained its strategy to deal with that challenge. Because it has never been clearly explained, the strategy has never been carefully scrutinised to see whether it has a credible chance of working. Read more…

Australia’s fraught decision on submarines

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida listen to a reporter’s question during a joint press conference in Tokyo, on 11 June 2014. A submarine deal would fundamentally change the Australia–Japan security relationship. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Editors, East Asia Forum

Australia is about to embark on its single biggest ever military acquisition. The Future Submarine Program (SEA1000) will see Australia purchase 12 submarines to replace its ageing Collins-class fleet.

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There’s more to Japan–Australia security ties than submarines

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe bow to Australian and Japanese national flags as they review a guard of honor in Tokyo on 18 December 2015. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Yuki Tatsumi, Stimson Center

Australia’s selection of a replacement for its Collins-Class submarine, termed the SEA1000 program, is entering its final stages. The competitive evaluation process set up by Australian government is nearing completion as the five-person Advisory Expert Panel finishes up its consideration of French, German and Japanese bids. Read more…

Strategy under the surface of the Australia–Japan sub deal


Author: H. D. P. Envall, ANU

The ‘competitive evaluation process’ Australia is now applying to decide who manufactures the country’s future submarines looms as a potential tipping point for the Japan–Australia strategic partnership. If the two countries were to enter into a long term relationship to build these submarines, a closer strategic partnership across the board becomes more likely. Read more…