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"Asian" NATO

Thursday, September 22, 2011 - 16:11

The idea about the formation of political and military alliance that can counter China has been discussed by politicians and researchers for a long time both in the West and in Asia-Pacific region.
The first attempt was the creation of military alliance of the USA, Australia and New Zealand (ANZUS) in 1951, which still exists today. Alliance commitments of the satellites of the United States make their participation in almost all wars of the USA necessary. So it was in Vietnam, Malaya, Iraq and Afghanistan. In the 2004-2005 there was international scandal, and the reason for it was the decision of the Australian Government that in case of an armed confrontation between the USA and China over Taiwan, the official Canberra refuses to send its military to support one of the parties. Later, it was forced to change its mind in favor of the policy pursued by Washington.
A new political-military alliance called the Southeast Asia Collective Defense Treaty (Southeast Asia Treaty Organization - SEATO) was created in 1954 according to the U.S. initiative. This structure brought together Britain, France, Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Pakistan, Philippines, Cambodia dependent territories and South Vietnam. It was mainly directed against the Communist expansion in Asia-Pacific region, which was largely promoted by China. The organization that in two years has been developed into a serious military-political block formed the basis for the troops from these states in the fighting in Vietnam. The gradual weakening of France in Indochina, the provision of independence to the colony of Malaya from the UK in 1957, which later formed into several states, the separation of Bangladesh from Pakistan, determined the collapse of the organization in 1977
An attempt to create a new military-political alliance was made by the United States in 2004. It can be called the Union of the four nations according to the number of its components. Thus, it includes the USA, Japan, Australia and India. The reason for the consolidation was the idea of the need to join efforts of the states of the Indian and Pacific oceans to the joint notification, response and emergency response to earthquakes and tsunamis like the one that occurred in 2004 near the island of Sumatra. The initiator of the creation of a "core group" was the United States. Despite the fact that it collapsed 10 days after its inception, the American politicians still offered to reformat the new structure into a stable international organization whose primary purpose is the protection of democratic values. Despite the short time existence of a "core group", the idea of the Union of Four Nations received a second wind in 2006-2008. Special role in the joining played the USA and Japan. The interest of the United States in this process is not clear: They tried to help organizations to strengthen alliances with a number of the states of the Pacific and Indian oceans not only in terms of bilateral relations, but also through closer cooperation between the states of the Union. So, all four states of the military-political bloc of the USA had strong diplomatic and economic relations, but they were added by the alliances with each other.
Moreover, the United States tried to promote the idea of transforming Japan into a sort of "Britain in Asia", and to make India into "Japan in Asia." Americans strongly encourage Japan to play a more active role in the Asian space. As for India, they wanted to enhance cooperation in the field of nuclear technology which is of a special interest for India. The outcome of Washington was signing the Agreement on Cooperation in the field of "civil" atom. On the 28 June 2007 the U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice achieved the joining of India to the Union of four nations.
As for Japan, Washington's policy reached its maximum effect during the administration of the Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. He played an important role in reviving the idea of the Union of Four Nations. He started promoting this initiative at the state level in 2006. The politician considered the association of pro-democracy Japan, USA, Australia and India into a single coalition to be extremely important. But, unlike the situation in 2004, he believed that the foundation of the new association should be the strengthening and further promotion of democratic values, human rights and freedoms in other countries in Asia.
Shinzo Abe, the same as the U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, played the role of a "battering ram" in promoting Sino-American policy in such an important country as India. Having performed visit to India in 2007, Japanese Prime Minister put forward the idea of creating a "Greater Asia" which will be formed through a dialogue with the democratically-minded leaders of the region.
This idea was to lead to the formation of a block of the liberal-democratic countries, but in reality, the direction of the organization was vividly manifested in enhanced military cooperation among the members of the Union of the four nations. So, in 2006 the leaders of Japanese land, sea and air defense forces of Japan paid a visit to New Delhi, and the Indian Defense Minister and the Chief of Staff of the Air Force of India visited Japan. The result of these visits was the fact that two countries signed an agreement on cooperation in defense and security. In March, 2007, Indian Foreign Minister held a first round of talks within the framework of the Strategic Dialogue between the two countries.
As for Australia, it set out the aim to strengthen the military and commercial interaction. So, in March, 2006 Australian Prime Minister John Howard visited India, where there was an agreement in the field of economy and trade, and also four memorandums were signed in the field of defense, customs, civil aviation and biotechnology.
On March 13, 2007 Australian Prime Minister paid a visit to Japan, where he signed a joint declaration on security guarantees, which was called a "military pact" by some analysts. Also there was promised to strengthen cooperation in the field of intelligence service, supporting peace and taking measures to minimize the number of victims of natural disasters. In addition, the establishment of Advisory Council on Cooperation in the field of security, consisting of ministers of defense and foreign ministers from each side was announced. On June, 2007 there was the first meeting of the four ministers in such format.
In March, 2006 was convened the first meeting of the Trilateral Strategic alliance consisting of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the United States, Japan and Australia. The outcome of the discussion was the statement that this alliance was "the basic structure in promoting stability and regional security". One of the main topics of discussion was "the promotion of cooperation with India." It was possible thanks to the visits of Condoleezza Rice and Shinzo Abe, and in April 2007 was held its first joint military exercises involving troops of Japan, the United States and India in the Pacific Ocean. And in September of that year, military exercises of the navies of the USA, Japan, India, Australia and the Philippines in the Bay of Bengal. In addition NATO and Japan raised the topic of extension of embargo on the arms delivery to China.
Further development of the Union of four Nations showed that it failed to evolve into a kind of stable international organization and remained as some theoretical construct. Perhaps this is due to the change of political leadership in Japan and the USA. But, nevertheless, the active development of this idea showed that the potential to create a pro-American, and at the same time, anti-Chinese alliance in Asia-Pacific region is high enough.
Growing at an exponential rate the resource use in the Asia-Pacific region, particularly China, create conditions for more and more conflicts between China, the Asian "tigers" and Japan. But while China has not begun active foreign intervention, its neighbors also do not make attempts to get united against this. On the contrary, they are actively engaged in mutually beneficial trade with Beijing. But at the same time they are preparing for a possible Chinese attack. For example, Japan, bypassing its own constitution, strengthens its forces of self-defense, it is also engaged in combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, since 2008 it has been building helicopters (or according to a standard classification - "light carriers"), and it is currently developing its own fighter jet of the fifth generation. Secretary-General of the Japanese Cabinet, Yukio Edano said: "China's modernization of the armed forces, and the increased activity along with the lack of transparency in this area cause concerns." India increased its costs for defense. Only in 2011 this number increased for more than 11%. In 2009, on the border with China it places the first squadron of new Su-30MKI fighters. This year was introduced the second squadron of these aircrafts, including in the Chinese border strip. Even being located at a considerable distance from Beijing, Australia takes steps to a possible escalation of the situation throughout the Asia-Pacific: it agreed to build the U.S. military base in Geraldton. Since 2007 missile launches and air targets in all of East Asia and Middle East have been monitored from this base.
The most likely scenario of a military confrontation in the Pacific is the one in which US-led states combine to provide economic and political pressure on China, especially by the embargo, closure of borders on the way from India to Japan. In this case it is essential that there is an agreement on this kind of joint actions given by Russia and Kazakhstan, which are the allies of China according to SCO. This will seriously undermine the economic power of China, and will provoke the strongest tension in the country, because in this case the export and import markets will be closed. Tensed domestic political and social environment can be used by the enemies of the Chinese government for organizing protests.
But this option of consolidation can only be possible in case of a major incident connected with the Celestial policy in the outer space. Something like the sinking of a ship that is allegedly peaceful, skirmishes on the border, or because of the brutal suppression of the "regime" of "peaceful" democratic-minded speeches of youth, students, minority groups within the country, unleashing of a major border conflict with a small country. Occasion can be created, but what is more important is to make it huge. In this case, China would be forced to either slow down its economic development, giving control over its economies to international financial organizations and multinational corporations, or to conduct offensive military operations. It is unlikely to use the second option because of the considerable backlog of its military spending (78 billion dollars) from the United States (636.3 billion), Japan ($ 51.8 billion), India ($ 30 billion), Korea ($ 24 billion) and other countries in the region.
America's elite, in order to destroy its chief rival in the struggle for the world’s leadership, may sacrifice its allies such as Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. They will experience the first blow of the Chinese Army. We had the opportunity to observe this course of events on the example of the First and the Second World Wars, when the USA contributed significantly to the outbreak of fire in Europe, and they only intervened in the last stage of the war. The idea that such wars, because of the presence of a number of countries opposing nuclear weapons, are impossible – is the illusion. On the contrary, the fastest way to solve the demographic problem in China and India is precisely through such interventions. The main thing is to build a system of effective missile defenses which is being done by the United States, and to be the first to attack the enemy.
The loss of U.S. global leadership involves not only the loss of windfall profits of the American elite, but also the overall reduction of the current level of consumption and living standards, because in this situation the United States will not be able to get the most profitable and strategically important concessions in the areas they need, and to impose its policies of TNCs to the small, medium and even large countries. It seems that to eliminate the threat of "the American way of life", we see the consolidation of almost all the society in the United States and the West, which may forget about democracy and human rights, but not to fall out of the safe "golden billion".
Thus, we can conclude that the prospects for anti-Chinese and pro-US alliance in the Asia-Pacific region are high enough. In order to prevent the formation of an alliance and bloc of states, China needs to hide its foreign policy ambitions for some time, at least until its military budget exceeds similar indicators as the U.S. budget that can only happen in some time.
Of course, the global war between China and pro-American bloc is the last option, but this possibility must also be considered. Most likely, the anti-Chinese policies of the main geo-strategic leader will be aimed at easing Celestial, at stimulating competition among Chinese elites. History of China said that the main factor that held back its development was the internal civil wars. If there were no such wars, the population of the Empire would have exceeded a billion during the middle Ages. Such mass of people would have long ago swept away all the nearby states. But this did not happen thanks to the temporary but very serious internal wars. Thus, apart from China's constraint in foreign policy, it’s necessary to carry out more intensive work in the domestic space.

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