Courtesy Reuters

SINGAPORE guards the western gateway of the Pacific. Situated at the extreme southeastern corner of Asia, where the tongue of the Malay peninsula protrudes into the East Indies, it is so favored by geography that ships plying between Suez and Japan as well as between India and Australia must pass within a mile of it. Off Singapore the waters of the Indian Ocean, the China Sea and the Java Sea meet. Like Panama, Gibraltar and Suez, it is one of the great focal points for shipping, where geography forces far-flung lines of communication to converge.

The strategical significance of Singapore

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