Asia’s middle powers face a trilateral dilemma stemming from their relationships with the U.S. and China. This paper uses the Australian example to examine the dilemma. It shows that Australia has bound itself to the U.S. because of domestic political factors, cost considerations, a belief that it can keep its interests separate, and its perception of regional threats. The paper then argues that others are likely to resolve their trilateral dilemmas in ways that make the regional strategic dynamic more competitive.
Australia and Asia’s Trilateral Dilemmas: Between Beijing and Washington?
Nick Bisley is Professor of International Relations and Executive Director of La Trobe Asia at La Trobe University, Victoria, Australia. Recent publications include: “A Rebalance to Where? U.S. Strategic Geography in Asia,” in Survival: Global Politics and Strategy (2013), and “China’s Rise and the Making of East Asia’s Security Architecture,” in the Journal of Contemporary China (2012). Email: <email@example.com>.
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Nick Bisley; Australia and Asia’s Trilateral Dilemmas: Between Beijing and Washington?. Asian Survey 1 April 2014; 54 (2): 297–318. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/as.2014.54.2.297
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