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East Asia Forum

Middle power conundrum amid US–China rivalry

South Korean President Moon Jae-in meets with Australian PM Scott Morrison in Canberra, Australia, 13 December 2021 (PHOTO: Lukas Coch/Pool via REUTERS)

Author: Shin-wha Lee, Korea University The international community has faced an unprecedented social and economic shock due to three ‘big bangs’ — increasing US–China strategic competition, the fourth industrial revolution and the COVID-19 crisis. These three big bangs are interrelated…

ASEAN and the new geopolitics of the Indo-Pacific

China Premier Li Keqiang attends Southeast Asian leaders virtual summit Tuesday 26 October 2021 without Myanmar military leader Min Aung Hlaing after its top general failure of Myanmar's army to adhere to a peace road map it had agreed with the southeast Asian bloc following the coup in February.

Author: Amitav Acharya, American University Southeast Asia is no stranger to strategic competition. But its ‘new geopolitics’ is different from those that existed during the Cold War. In fighting communism, the United States extended its security umbrella to the region.…

Cambodia is China’s leverage point on ASEAN

Sailors stand guard near petrol boats at the Cambodian Ream Naval Base, Sihanoukville, Cambodia, 16 July 2019 (Photo:Reuters/Samrang Pring).

Author: Davis Florick, Missouri State University Chinese interference has negatively impacted Cambodian politics and allowed Prime Minister Hun Sen to lean more fully into authoritarianism. As illiberalism calcifies in Cambodia, the country grows further isolated from the international community —…