About the Journal
Chinese Naval Strategy, the United States, ASEAN
and the South China Sea
Author: Leszek Buszynski
Volume 8, Number 2 (Winter 2012), pp. 19-32.
The South China Sea has become a focal point for US-China rivalry which makes it such a critical issue today. China’s naval strategy demands control over the South China Sea for the various missions the navy has set itself. It justifies China’s assertive actions that have been intended to press the ASEAN claimants, Vietnam and the Philippines in particular, to recognise Chinese sovereignty. The United States cannot accept Chinese control over the South China Sea, it has reacted to China’s assertiveness by repositioning its forces in the Asia Pacific and strengthening security ties with the ASEAN claimants. ASEAN itself becomes sidelined in this rivalry and struggles to maintain its relevance, the proposals it has promoted to resolve the South China Sea dispute such as the code of conduct lose importance. Rather than discussing a resolution of the issue it would be more realistic to negotiate an agreement preventing incidents at sea or similar measure which would reduce the likelihood of conflict.
About the Author
Leszek Buszynski is a Visiting Fellow in the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre of the Australian National University. He was previously a professor of International Relations in the Graduate School of International Relations at the International University of Japan, and before that Senior Research Fellow and Coordinator of the Graduate Program in Strategic Studies at the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre at the Australian National University. He has published widely on Asia Pacific security issues. firstname.lastname@example.org.