• Global Commons

    U.S., partners work to expand warfighter technologies

    United States Strategic Command The United States Department of Defense (DOD) is working with international and industry partners to develop scalable, autonomous weapons systems aimed at countering the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) munitions buildup. Announced by Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks in August 2023, the Replicator initiative will streamline and accelerate delivery of innovative technology at scale. “Replicator is meant…

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  • Global Commons

    Allies and Partners invest in, collaborate on missile defense systems

    FORUM Staff Expanding nuclear and nonnuclear missile arsenals across the Indo-Pacific contribute to security dilemmas throughout the region. The People’s Republic of China (PRC) relies on growing capabilities — including intercontinental and inter-regional ballistic missiles along with medium- and short-range ballistic weapons — to assert expansive sovereignty claims. Meanwhile, a provocative North Korea persists with its United Nations-banned weapons programs,…

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  • Conflicts - Tensions

    Japan’s defense priorities outlined amid geopolitical tensions

    Marc Jacob Prosser Geopolitical tensions and technological innovation will continue to shape Japan’s defense priorities, analysts say, including external threats from North Korea and the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and internal challenges such as human resources and technological upgrades. Tokyo is developing safeguards to defend its interests against aggressors while supporting domestic defense advances. Hirohito Ogi, a senior research…

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  • Northeast Asia

    Japan, NATO discussing hotline for sharing security information

    FORUM Staff The expanding cooperation between Japan and NATO is continuing with negotiations to establish a hotline for rapidly sharing security information on such threats as cyberattacks and disinformation campaigns, including from the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and Russia. The communication tool could be modeled on the system used by the 31-nation security alliance, which can be used to…

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  • Conflicts - Tensions

    Taiwan blasts PRC’s ‘irresponsible’ civilian aircraft routes over strait

    FORUM Staff The People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) unilateral decision to move a civilian flight path closer to Taiwan and increase traffic on two routes over the Taiwan Strait poses safety and security concerns, officials said. Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) demanded the PRC “cease such irresponsible flight operations” and promptly begin negotiations. The PRC’s move took effect February 1,…

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  • Free and Open Indo-Pacific/FOIP

    Survey of escapees indicates worsening quality of life in North Korea

    Radio Free Asia A survey of more than 6,300 North Korean escapees paints a bleak picture of life in the isolated country: Food has grown scarcer amid a weakening economy and rampant corruption. Women play a more elevated role in families and society — not because of a heightened sense of equality but out of economic necessity, interviewees said. The…

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  • Free and Open Indo-Pacific/FOIP

    Philippine Coast Guard accuses PRC of dangerous maneuvers

    Agence France-Presse The Philippine Coast Guard accused Chinese vessels of dangerous maneuvers in early February 2024 near a reef off the Philippine coast. The Philippine vessel BRP Teresa Magbanua was patrolling around Scarborough Shoal, delivering provisions to fishing crews and ensuring their safety. The shoal, a rich South China Sea fishing ground, is within the Philippines’ internationally recognized exclusive economic…

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  • Partnerships

    Thailand, U.S. to hold annual military drills with troops from 30 nations

    Radio Free Asia Thailand and the United States will stage annual, large-scale military drills in late February 2024, with more than 10,000 troops from 30 nations expected to participate. As part of the maneuvers, Thai and U.S. personnel will salvage the Royal Thai Navy corvette HTMS Sukhothai, which sank during a storm in the Gulf of Thailand in December 2022,…

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  • Conflicts - Tensions

    CCP weaponizes law to gain strategic advantage

    FORUM Staff Chinese Communist Party (CCP) General Secretary Xi Jinping’s slant on international conventions favors the People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) objectives, often to other states’ detriment. These unilateral “lawfare” tactics are among the CCP’s gray-zone techniques in seeking global hegemony, analysts say. The CCP increasingly employs lawfare to gain leverage in Indo-Pacific waters, including the Taiwan Strait, and the…

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  • Partnerships

    Singapore-Thailand defense partnership crucial to Indo-Pacific security

    Tom Abke Formed over decades and evolving with the security environment in the Indo-Pacific, the defense partnership between Singapore and Thailand is among the region’s most robust and far-reaching, including joint efforts to secure the vital shipping lanes of the Malacca and Singapore straits, and regular military exercises. “It’s with only a handful of key foreign counterparts that the SAF…

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