The trial of Separiano, the young Indonesian man who was caught attempting to blow up the Myanmar embassy in Jakarta, has raised questions about the future of Muslim-Buddhist relations in Indonesia and across the wider ASEAN region.
Missing the good old days? When there were only two large powers having a global ideological war? Recent events in Egypt, Libya, and Syria, among others, make clear that it has become harder to predict the driving force of international politics and security.
The biggest issue for the US-Japan alliance is China. Washington and Tokyo must address the direct challenges that Beijing poses to regional security as well as manage the impact of China’s rise on their bilateral relationship.
The unfolding international response to Typhoon Haiyan, in the same super-destructive league as the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, Cyclone Nargis in 2008, and Japan’s 2011 triple disaster, has again underscored the importance of the naval dimension to Humanitarian and Disaster Relief (HADR) operations across the Indo-Pacific.
The Third Plenary Session of the 18th Communist Party of China Central Committee focused on deepening China's economic and political reform. Among the long list of "to-dos" released after the meeting, the most concrete, and perhaps the most eye-catching, is the establishment of a State Security Committee (SSC).
Achieving a “new type of great power relations” with the United States is a cornerstone of China’s emerging foreign policy. But it remains a brittle one. Although first expressed by former President Hu Jintao, the term has achieved elevated status since President Xi Jinping’s summit meeting with President Barack Obama at Sunnylands, California, some four months ago.
"History" again raised its ugly head when Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo failed to get even a brief session with South Korean President Park Geun-hye while they were both in Southeast Asia earlier in October.
At the APEC Economic Leaders Meeting in Bali earlier this month, there was no missing the cold atmosphere between ROK President Park Geun-hye and Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo. Their frosty interactions were like a scene from a Korean drama, especially when contrasted with the warmth shared between Park and Chinese leader Xi Jinping.
Not even the sharpest media spin can spare the United States from criticism making the rounds in East Asia over President Barack Obama’s inability to show up for the ASEAN-led summit season earlier this month. The contrast could not be clearer.
The world stands on the threshold of a stunning demographic transformation. Over the next few decades, global aging will affect everything from the shape of the family to the shape of the geopolitical order. Perhaps most fatefully, it could throw into question the ability of societies to provide a decent standard of living for the old without imposing a crushing burden on the young.