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  • Author: Alex Brouse, Dustin McDonald
  • Publication Date: 11-2014
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: High tensions in Northeast Asia are cause for considerable alarm. Of particular concern for the maintenance of global security are the disputes over Senkaku/Diaoyu and Dokdo/Takeshima islands. Strong grievances rooted in history and rising nationalistic sentiment in China, South Korea and Japan have made the positions of the respective parties currently irreconcilable. The tension surrounding the issue of territorial control, particularly between China and Japan, has the potential to spark a military confrontation. Due to a lack of empathy and the propensity to overestimate threats from neighbours, the region is especially volatile. Public commitments by US President Barack Obama in support of the US-Japan Mutual Security Treaty could ensure that any military confrontation between China and Japan might quickly escalate and draw the United States into direct conflict with China. In order to improve empathy, a concerted effort must be made to change the channel and work on issues where interests do align. Nowhere do the interests of China, South Korea, Japan and the United States align more than on the issue of North Korean denuclearization. By working together on an issue of mutual concern, these four countries can counter the rapid erosion of trust. By cultivating a cooperative attitude, tensions can be lowered, increasing the prospects for peaceful management of current acute disputes.
  • Topic: Conflict Prevention, Arms Control and Proliferation, Diplomacy, Peacekeeping
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, China, South Korea
  • Author: Kai Sun
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: As China's presence in the Arctic grows, international attention on China in the Arctic also grows. This paper clarifies why China is interested in the Arctic and its role in joining the Arctic play, and touches on future trends in this regard. The paper begins with a discussion of China's recent Arctic capacity building and diplomacy, and the surge of interest in Arctic affairs by Chinese social scientists and strategists in recent years. China looks north for basically four reasons: it is influenced by environmental changes in the Arctic; it is drawn by the business opportunities arising from the opening of the Arctic passages and better access to Arctic resources; and it is also committed to maintaining good governance in the Arctic — which is also in its best interests.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, Economics, Oil, Natural Resources, Governance
  • Political Geography: China, Israel
  • Author: James Manicom
  • Publication Date: 11-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: The United States and Canada have simultaneously re- invigorated their diplomatic and military postures toward the Asia-Pacific region. As two of the world's closest allies, it is worth exploring the possible synergies and tensions between their efforts to identify areas of possible policy coordination. Canada has considerable assets that could support US diplomacy in the region, including the legacy of its good offices and its close ties with the US military; however, these assets are outweighed by three liabilities. First, Canada's diplomacy to the Asia-Pacific is driven by its desire to diversify away from the US market. Although relatively innocuous in isolation, the politics of this shift, driven by growing concern in Canada about whether the United States remains a reliable market for energy exports, adds a layer of complexity. Second, Canada's closer economic ties with China could undermine its willingness to support the United States on tough regional security issues in the Asia-Pacific. Third, and related, Canadian silence about navigational freedoms, the primary security issue between the United States and China in East Asia, has not gone unnoticed. This paper argues that, on balance, Canada may not be an ideal Pacific partner for the United States.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation, Diplomacy, International Trade and Finance, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Canada, East Asia, Asia, Australia/Pacific, Asia-Pacific
  • Author: Daniel P. Erikson
  • Publication Date: 04-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: The presidency of Barack Obama ushered in a welcome honeymoon period in US-Latin American relations following eight years of the Bush administration's polarizing policies towards the region. Early optimism has been tempered by the reappearance of tensions in hemispheric relations. They include the rise of Brazil as a regional power, the role of Venezuela and the continued strain in US-Cuban relations. Regional relations are further complicated by China's growing economic presence in Latin America, increased ties with Iran and Russia, different US and Latin reactions to the June 2009 coup in Honduras, and the crisis response to the January 2010 earthquake in Haiti. Still, the US has potential to advance a strategy of substantive, issue oriented engagement designed to rekindle the early goodwill that resulted from Obama's election to the White House.
  • Topic: International Relations, Diplomacy
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, China, Latin America, Haiti