Commentary: The Indo Pacific, a security diamond, a 10-year Quad?, Channel NewsAsia, 10 November 2017

Channel NewsAsia carried a commentary by Assistant Professor of Social Sciences Rohan Mukherjee regarding a strategic framework for a free and open Indo Pacific involving the US, Australia, Japan and India. This grouping is known as the Quadrilateral, or Quad, which many US and Japanese strategists see as the bedrock of a secure and prosperous Indo-Pacific region. This was first proposed by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in 2007 and he had reprised this vision after his recent election victory. When China had first heard of this proposal, Dr Mukherjee noted that they strongly objected to this group as they had viewed it as an initiative at containing them. China’s rapid rise in the region over the past decade threatens to undermine this framework, added to this are internal contradictions within the Quad and a weakened US which make it less likely that a ‘free and open Indo Pacific’ will happen. Dr Mukherjee opined that greater constructive leadership from Washington was perhaps the only way this might still become a reality.


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