Asia-Pacific Security: Less Uncertainty, New Opportunities

In This Review

Asia-Pacific Security: Less Uncertainty, New Opportunities

Edited by Gary Klintworth
St. Martin's Press, 1996
308 pp. $49.95
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In this useful volume, a group of scholars, most of them Australians at the Australian National University, offer a comprehensive and well-balanced picture of strategic trends developing in the Asia-Pacific region. There is a particularly penetrating analysis of American policy in the Pacific by Coral Bell and a cautiously optimistic conclusion by Klintworth. The volume serves as a useful antidote to the recent broad-ranging, illuminating, and pessimistic analysis of Barry Buzan and Gerald Segal in Survival, the journal of the International Institute for Strategic Studies. Bell concludes that the United States will continue to play the dominant role in Pacific affairs and "remains a necessary balancer." Klintworth and his colleagues conclude that the case for pessimism on the security outlook for the Asia-Pacific region is wanting. Grounds for cautious optimism include the continued engagement of the United States in the region, the likelihood of continued strong economic growth, and the development of regional economic, diplomatic, and other forms of cooperation.