Asia’s Cauldron: The South China Sea and the End of a Stable Pacific

Asia's Cauldron: The South China Sea and the End of a Stable Pacific Author Robert D. Kaplan
ISBN-10 0812984803
ISBN-13 9780812984804
Year 2015-01-06
Pages 256
Language English
Publisher Random House Trade Paperbacks
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NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BYFINANCIAL TIMESFrom Robert D Kaplan named one of the worlds Top 100 Global Thinkers by Foreign Policy magazine comes a penetrating look at the volatile region that will dominate the future of geopolitical conflict Over the last decade the center of world power has been quietly shifting from Europe to Asia With oil reserves of several billion barrels an estimated nine hundred trillion cubic feet of natural gas and several centuries worth of competing territorial claims the South China Sea in particular is a simmering pot of potential conflict The underreported military buildup in the area where the Western Pacific meets the Indian Ocean means that it will likely be a hinge point for global war and peace for the foreseeable future In Asias Cauldron Robert D Kaplan offers up a vivid snapshot of the nations surrounding the South China Sea the conflicts brewing in the region at the dawn of the twenty first century and their implications for global peace and stability One of the worlds most perceptive foreign policy experts Kaplan interprets Americas interests in Asia in the context of an increasingly assertive China He explains how the regions unique geography fosters the growth of navies but also impedes aggression And he draws a striking parallel between Chinas quest for hegemony in the South China Sea and the United States imperial adventure in the Caribbean more than a century ago To understand the future of conflict in East Asia Kaplan argues one must understand the goals and motivations of its leaders and its people Part travelogue part geopolitical primer Asias Cauldron takes us on a journey through the regions boom cities and ramshackle slums from Vietnam where the superfueled capitalism of the erstwhile colonial capital Saigon inspires the geostrategic pretensions of the official seat of government in Hanoi to Malaysia where a unique mix of authoritarian Islam and Western style consumerism creates quite possibly the ultimate postmodern society and from Singapore whose benevolent autocracy helped foster an economic miracle to the Philippines where a different brand of authoritarianism under Ferdinand Marcos led not to economic growth but to decades of corruption and crime At a time when every days news seems to contain some new storylarge or smallthat directly relates to conflicts over the South China Sea Asias Cauldron is an indispensable guide to a corner of the globe that will affect all of our lives for years to come Praise for Asias Cauldron Asias Cauldron is a short book with a powerful thesis and it stands out for its clarity and good sense If you are doing business in China traveling in Southeast Asia or just obsessing about geopolitics you will want to read it The New York Times Book ReviewKaplan has established himself as one of our most consequential geopolitical thinkers Asias Cauldron is part treatise on geopolitics part travel narrative Indeed he writes in the tradition of the great travel writers The Weekly Standard Kaplans fascinating book is a welcome challenge to the pessimists who see only trouble in Chinas rise and the hawks who view it as malign The Economist Muscular deeply knowledgeable Kaplan is an ultra realist who takes a non moralistic stance on questions of power and diplomacy Financial TimesFrom the Hardcover edition

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