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Anu Masi Policy Background Paper 003
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Anu Masi Policy Background Paper 003

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  • 1. h�p://asi.anu.edu.auANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU- PolicyMASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASIANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASIANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU- BackgroundMASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASIANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASIANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU- PaperMASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASIANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASIANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASINo. 3, 29 August 2011 Controlling the Seas in East Asia? Aileen Baviera The Australian Na�onal University & The MacArthur Founda�on Asia Security Ini�a�ve
  • 2. ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASIANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU- INTRODUCTION power military competition. Combined, Chi- na’s increasing naval power, the vigorous in-THERE IS some debate about whether mul- terest of the US in asserting naval primacy,tilateralism or bilateralism (including US and the growing assertiveness of Japan posemilitary alliances) provides more effective serious challenges to the future securityapproaches to security dilemmas facing East architecture of the Asia-Pacific. In particular,Asia. One might apply this question to the they threaten to undermine the cooperativemaritime security challenges in the region. security institutions and norms that have been painstakingly developed since the endAt least four interlocking layers of potential of the Cold War. However, the most urgentmaritime conflict exist in East Asia today. security concerns relate to conflicting terri-These include: (1) territorial and sovereignty torial claims among regional states.disputes over islands and atolls in the Eastand South China Seas; (2) disputes over CLAIMANT STATES’ APPROACHES TOundefined or overlapping maritime boundar- MARITIME DISPUTESies and legal jurisdiction issues; (3) threatsto maritime safety and sea-lane security; To what extent have bilateral and multilat-and (4) military competition for sea control eral approaches involving various claimantamong major powers. states succeeded or failed thus far in miti- gating the region’s maritime conflicts?Most worrisome is the challenge of great Bilateral–multilateral questions are espe- cially relevant to the Spratlys disputes: East Asia currently faces serious China has become more adamant that these challenges to its maritime security, be resolved bilaterally whereas the Associa- tion of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) of which the most worrisome is the has pressed for a multilateral process. Sino- potential for great power military Vietnamese tensions, for example, have competition for control of the seas. increased significantly, with China blocking Vietnam’s exploration activities and Vietnam There are also territorial disputes, seeking to “internationalize” the dispute. for which solutions have been In terms of the Senkaku/Diaoyu dispute, elusive. Bilateral and multilateral multiple rounds of bilateral negotiations on resolution efforts between claimant demarcating the maritime boundaries have states have had limited success, led not to delimitation but to a “principled while the US-centered “hub-and- consensus” where Japan and China have agreed to cooperate in a “transitional pe- spokes” alliance system has at riod.” There had been indications of both times exacerbated tensions. governments trying to downplay tensions but in September 2010, ill feelings escalated Challenges lie ahead, but there following the collision between a Chinese trawler and Japanese Coast Guard vessel, are steps that can be taken. China leading to large-scale protests. must be given a seat at the rule- making table, all states’ legiti- Bilateralism has been shown to be insuf- mate security concerns must be ficient for building mutual assurance, with acknowledged, and a balance be- temporary de-escalation of tensions usually the only achievement. In the case of the tween coordinated responsibility Spratlys, the fact that multiple parties are and autonomy must be achieved. involved has been a major structural obsta- cle to any exclusively bilateral approach.
  • 3. ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASIANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU- Bilateralism is also vulnerable to changes in without the participation of many affectedthe overall political climate of relations, to countries, and also in choosing to keep ei-domestic interest groups, and to opposition ther silent or equivocal about the status offrom other neighboring states whose own then Japanese-occupied territories, the USrights may be infringed. Joint development helped sow some of the seeds of the con-projects and other functional cooperation ar- temporary conflicts.rangements can thus easily fall apart. At the height of the Cold War, the US consol-Multilateral cooperation has likewise achieved idated its alliances with Japan, South Korea,limited outcomes. In the China–Japan and South Vietnam, and the Philippines, amongJapan–Korea territorial disputes, multilat- others, and with only a few exceptions care-eral approaches have not been established, fully avoided entanglement in territorialwhereas the South China Sea disputes disputes.have been the subject of both official and“track two” multilateral diplomacy. Only the Yet the posture of US neutrality has beenASEAN-China dialogue, however, directly ad- more myth than reality. For instance, USdresses territorial and maritime jurisdiction recognition of Japan’s sovereignty overdisputes. In 2002, the ASEAN-China Decla- the Kuriles islands, disputed by the Sovietration on the Conduct of Parties in the South Union/Russia, was reiterated in FebruaryChina Sea became the dispute’s first official 2011 amid indications of cooperation be-multilateral agreement. tween Moscow and Beijing against Japan.Multilateral agendas for security coopera- Likewise, in the Senkaku/Diaoyu dispute,tion have tended to be more comprehensive, while the US only acknowledges that Japanemphasizing shared interests and common “effectively administers” the islands, it hasgoals, in contrast to bilateralism’s emphasis said that it considers the islands as fallingon competitive goals. In seemingly intracta- within the scope of its defense obligationsble disputes over oil and gas, a multilateral to Japan. In contrast, Washington has notcode of conduct may moreover provide more recognized the Philippine claim to the Kalay-stable foundations for conflict avoidance, in aan Islands (part of the Spratlys) and haspart because state behavior becomes sub- been more equivocal regarding any obliga-ject to group scrutiny. tion to defend the Philippines if any aggres- sion were to occur against it in relation to itsMARITIME DISPUTES AND THE SAN claims.FRANCISCO SYSTEMTo what extent has theUS-centered “hub-and-spokes” or “San Fran-cisco” system mitigatedor exacerbated theseterritorial disputes? Andis this system likely tocoexist with, or inte-grate into, a compre-hensive multilateralsecurity architecture inthe future?History shows that, inframing the San Fran-cisco Treaty in 1951 Photo: US Pacific Fleet on Flickr
  • 4. ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASIANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU-MASI ANU- Nonetheless, the US still has the means to ABOUT THE AUTHORpursue other bilateral and multilateral op-tions for helping to resolve these disputes. Aileen Baviera Professor of Asian StudiesMuch has changed in recent years, with the Asian CenterUS showing greater readiness to engage University of the Philippineswith the issue. This shift can only be under-stood in the context of a refocusing on the Aileen Baviera is professor of Asian Studies at the Asianmaritime domain in US security strategy, Center, University of the Philippines. She is also editor-in-increasing concern over China’s military ad- chief of Asian Politics and Policy, published by Wiley-Black- well and the Policy Studies Organization. Previously, she hasvances, and the need to manage the impact been dean of the Asian Center and head of the Center forof the financial crisis on regional percep- International Relations and Strategic Studies of the Philippinetions of US power. Frictions in the US hub- Foreign Service Institute. In 2010, she was a visiting fellow ofand-spokes network of alliances, moreover, the ARC Centre for Policing and Security and on joint appoint-underscore the need for new approaches. ment to the Australian National University and Griffith Uni- versity, Australia. Her research interests include contempo- rary China studies, international relations, Philippine foreignBUILDING A MARITIME REGIME policy, Asia-Pacific security, and Asian civil society.It currently seems that the various territo- TERMS OF USErial disputes in East Asia will be addressedprimarily among the claimants themselves. Permission is freely given to publish this paper in its entiretyConsequently, the role of the alliance sys- or in part in any newspaper, wire service, internet network, newsletter or blog, providing that full credit is given to thetem will be based on US efforts to level the author(s), the Department of International Relations (ANU),playing field, for instance by providing its and the MacArthur Foundation. Kindly inform the editor (seepartners training and equipment to better below) and provide details as to where and when the publi-address their maritime security and territo- cation occurred.rial integrity concerns. ABOUT THE ANU–MACARTHUR ASIA SECURITY INITIATIVEIn pursuing engagement, the US must alsoclarify: (1) what its intentions are in the In May 2009, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foun-pursuit of its “global commons” strategy; dation launched the Asia Security Initiative (ASI) – a world-and (2) how this concept relates to state wide network of 27 policy research institutions which aimedsovereignty as well as sovereign rights that to develop new ideas for overcoming the security challengeslittoral states hope to exercise under the faced by Asia-Pacific nations. The ANU has been one of the Initiative’s partner institutions through the ANU–MacArthurLaw of the Sea Convention. Asia Security Initiative (ANU–MASI) Partnership. This Partner- ship has led to numerous research conferences and publish-Significant challenges lie ahead. In fact, be- ing outcomes, including the Asian Security Seminar Seriesyond the territorial disputes, a key question and the ANU–MASI Policy Background Paper Series.for East Asia concerns how regional statesmight be brought together to design an in- CONTACT THE EDITORclusive maritime security regime collectively. David EnvallUltimately, such a regime must: Editor ANU–MASI Policy Background Paper Series} allow China as stakeholder and potential Department of International Relations spoiler to sit at the rule-making table; School of International, Political Strategic Studies College of Asia the Pacific The Australian National University} acknowledge the legitimate maritime E-mail: anumasi@anu.edu.au security concerns of all states concerned; http://asi.anu.edu.au/papers and Please cite as: Baviera, Aileen (2011) “Controlling the Seas} provide a balance between coordinated re- in East Asia?” ANU–MASI Policy Background Paper, No. 3, 29 sponsibility and autonomy in dealing with August. common maritime security challenges. n

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