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China’s rise has upset the global balance of power, and the first place to feel the strain is Beijing’s back yard: the South China Sea. For decades tensions have smoldered in the region, but today the threat of a direct confrontation among superpowers grows ever more likely. This important book is the first to make clear sense of the South Sea disputes. Bill Hayton, a journalist with extensive experience in the region, examines the high stakes involved for rival nations that include Vietnam, India, Taiwan, the Philippines, and China, as well as the United States, Russia, and others. Hayton also lays out the daunting obstacles that stand in the way of peaceful resolution. Through lively stories of individuals who have shaped current conflicts—businessmen, scientists, shippers, archaeologists, soldiers, diplomats, and more—Hayton makes understandable the complex history and contemporary reality of the South China Sea. He underscores its crucial importance as the passageway for half the world’s merchant shipping and one-third of its oil and gas. Whoever controls these waters controls the access between Europe, the Middle East, South Asia, and the Pacific. The author critiques various claims and positions (that China has historic claim to the Sea, for example), overturns conventional wisdoms (such as America’s overblown fears of China’s nationalism and military resurgence), and outlines what the future may hold for this clamorous region of international rivalry.
Wie Geografie Geschichte macht Weltpolitik ist auch Geopolitik. Alle Regierungen, alle Staatschefs unterliegen den Zwängen der Geographie. Berge und Ebenen, Flüsse, Meere, Wüsten setzen ihrem Entscheidungsspielraum Grenzen. Um Geschichte und Politik zu verstehen, muss man selbstverständlich die Menschen, die Ideen, die Einstellungen kennen. Aber wenn man die Geographie nicht mit einbezieht, bekommt man kein vollständiges Bild. Zum Beispiel Russland: Von den Moskauer Großfürsten über Iwan den Schrecklichen, Peter den Großen und Stalin bis hin zu Wladimir Putin sah sich jeder russische Staatschef denselben geostrategischen Problemen ausgesetzt, egal ob im Zarismus, im Kommunismus oder im kapitalistischen Nepotismus. Die meisten Häfen frieren immer noch ein halbes Jahr zu. Nicht gut für die Marine. Die nordeuropäische Tiefebene von der Nordsee bis zum Ural ist immer noch flach. Jeder kann durchmarschieren. Russland, China, die USA, Europa, Afrika, Lateinamerika, der Nahe Osten, Indien und Pakistan, Japan und Korea, die Arktis und Grönland: In zehn Kapiteln zeigt Tim Marshall, wie die Geographie die Weltpolitik beeinflusst und beeinflusst hat.
The first book to comprehensively break down the politics and tensions among the countries of the western Pacific, by a foreign correspondent who has witnessed it firsthand In the sphere of future global politics, no region will be as hotly contested as the Asia-Pacific, where great power interests collide amid the mistrust of unresolved conflicts and disputed territory. This is where authoritarian China is trying to rewrite international law and challenge the democratic values of the United States and its allies. The lightning rods of conflict are remote reefs and islands from which China has created military bases in the 1.5-million-square-mile expanse of the South China Sea, a crucial world trading route that this rising world power now claims as its own. No other Asian country can take on China alone. They look for protection from the United States, although it, too, may be ill-equipped for the job at hand. If China does get away with seizing and militarizing waters here, what will it do elsewhere in the world, and who will be able to stop it? In Asian Waters, award-winning foreign correspondent Humphrey Hawksley breaks down the politics—and tensions—that he has followed through this region for years. Reporting on decades of political developments, he has witnessed China's rise to become one of the world's most wealthy and militarized countries, and delivers in Asian Waters the compelling narrative of this most volatile region. Can the United States and China handle the changing balance of power peacefully? Do Japan, the Philippines, South Korea, and Taiwan share enough common purpose to create a NATO-esque multilateral alliance? Does China think it can even become a superpower while making an enemy of America? If so, how does it plan to achieve it? Asian Waters delves into these topics and more as Hawksley presents the most comprehensive and accessible analysis ever of this region.
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