De-classified US strategy document on the Indo-Pacific – ASEEMA (aseemamag.com)
United States de-classified a document titled ‘US Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific on 13th of January. The de-classified document consists of 10 pages and is likely to be only a part of the larger document. It is extremely unusual to de-classify a document before its scheduled date, in this case it was to be in the year 2043. When one studies this document, there’s hardly anything that can be deemed classified. Whatever is written is not very different from US strategy documents in the public domain. In so far as US’s objectives in the Indo-Pacific are concerned, these were already known. Hence the motives of ‘de-classifying’ this document seems rather to convey a message domestically. One, it shows the efforts of the incumbent towards the Indo-Pacific.
January 27, 2021 – By Amruta Karambelkar
The recent US decision regarding Taiwan should also be seen from this perspective. Nonetheless the document is interesting and serves as another opportunity to discuss the Indo-Pacific. It perhaps intends to communicate to the countries of the Indo-Pacific and to China that the US is very much active in the region, and is going to be here for a long time. The document makes it clear that China’s attempts at regional hegemony will be challenged by a network of like-minded countries under the US leadership.
Description of US’s interests, Aims and Strategy in the Indo-Pacific.
US preeminence in the Indo-Pacific is deemed to be inevitable for US’s interests globally. The document lists out US’s national security challenges and the first and foremost is the question about maintaining US primacy in the Indo-Pacific region, ‘preventing China from establishing new, illiberal sphere of influence’, ensuring that North Korea does not threaten the US. US’s aim is to maintain ‘economic, diplomatic, and military access’ to the Indo-Pacific, which is described as ‘the most populous region of the world and more than one-third of the global economy’. It intends to achieve these goals by reinforcing its alliances, strengthening its partners and forging new relationships, with the overarching goal of ‘enhancing credibility and effectiveness’ of its alliances. This is aimed at preventing China’s attempts at dissolving US’s regional network. Ultimate goal is that ‘US and its partners on every continent are resistant to Chinese activities aimed at undermining their sovereignty, including through covert and coercive influence’.
(…) Militarily, the US wants to prevent Chinese superiority in first island chain and dominate ‘all domains’ outside of it.
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