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Showing posts from December 11, 2013

Monitoring Airspace Over the East China Sea

A Japan Air-Self Defense Force Boeing E-767 Airborne Warning and Control System is able to monitor the skies above the East China Sea. (Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images)


As China and Japan continue to patrol and monitor their declared air defense identification zones in the East China Sea, both countries are trying to enhance their situational awareness in the disputed region by bolstering their airborne early warning and control capabilities. Although Japan has historically had more advanced airborne early warning and control systems, China is quickly catching up. In theory, improved capabilities would benefit both countries as they compete with one another other for primacy in these contested waters.


Airborne early warning and control systems are critical tools for monitoring expansive airspace. Compared to ground-based and naval radars, early warning and control aircraft can much more rapidly deploy to a contested zone and can generally track and identify sea-skimming …

Russia Strengthens Ties With Vietnam


Editor's Note: This is the first of a three-part series about Russia's intensifying focus on East Asia. Part 1 examines Russia's traditional interests in the region and its closer relationship with Vietnam.

Recent challenges in exporting energy to Europe have made an orientation toward Asia more desirable for Moscow. Russia's economy depends on hydrocarbon exports, and while Western Europe is attempting to become less dependent on Russia by seeking new energy sources, Asian markets have large and indiscriminate appetites for energy.

Although Russia's focus in Asia traditionally has been on China, Japan and South Korea, it also has ties to Southeast Asia, which remains a strategically significant -- though not absolutely essential -- area for Moscow's efforts to extend its influence and energy exports eastward. Notably, Moscow recently struck a spate of energy and defense deals with Hanoi in an effort to strengthen their relationship, open up new markets f…