Wednesday 06 Oct 2021 | 22:49 | SYDNEY
Wednesday 06 Oct 2021 | 22:49 | SYDNEY

Response to reader query on US bases


Andrew Carr


23 November 2011 11:20

Responding to Matt Zurstrassen's questions, Reuben Hintz writes:

Based on this link, it appears that the US Marines headed to Darwin will not be coming from any specific locale; nor is there any direct link to the Okinawa to Guam relocation that has been on indefinite hiatus for several years now. Of course the more basing options in the region the Pentagon has, the more flexibility it has in negotiating future agreements with the Japanese and South Korean governments.

As for the question about the correlation between Asian countries' economic relationships with China and their security relationships with the US, it is very interesting that it appears to be essentially a negative one. Almost every country in the region now has China as their largest trading partner and this trend seems to be only accelerating. At the same time, in the last year nearly every country in the region, with the exception of North Korea, seems to be doing nearly everything it can to build a stronger political-military relationship with the US. The latest addition to this trend, to the surprise of almost everyone watching, seems to be the Myanmar government.

Japan and South Korea's success, at least so far, in balancing the two seemingly contradictory relationships is a much more difficult question. It is always dangerous to run to cultural stereotypes when the questions get difficult, but in discussions with other students and officials from Asian countries about this apparent contradiction between their economic and security relationships, it is always striking to me that they don't really see much of a contradiction at all. Then again, considering China is America's second largest trading partner, maybe we don't really see one either.