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Use in the Indo-Pacific region.  Share of islands

Use in the Indo-Pacific region. Share of islands

The US is organizing a summit with Indo-Pacific island nations to reaffirm its commitment to working with countries of geostrategic importance in the region and watched over by China. Washington is now looking at those countries’ priorities on climate change

Nello Report The official released by the White House did not refer to China, but to “history, values ​​and personal relations” in what was later interpreted as a US-Pacific summit to be held in Washington on September 28 and 29. Island nations will reflect the broadening and deepening of our cooperation on key issues such as […] A Free and Open Indo-Pacific Development”.

This last step makes the scope of the subject clear. “A free and open Indo-Pacific“Concept is (Created by the late Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo) with the US approaching Chinese activities in the region. Allegation of Militarization To create a hegemonic dimension, it is based on a demand for independence and transparency and moves beyond building a system of alliances aimed at containing Beijing.

Small countries like island nations have their own importance in this planned geostrategic system. Washington has long sought the support of these Indo-Pacific nations as well. But it faces difficulties, and a summit in the US capital in three weeks shows the Biden administration wants to step up efforts to counter China’s growing diplomatic influence in the region.

As part of the strategic conflict with Beijing, the Biden administration feels the need to renew ties with those countries — something similar is happening with Africa, and indeed another has already been announced. Summit with all actors of the continentand held at the White House in December. China’s presence in the Indo-Pacific is deep (the region is a natural strategic basin for Beijing), a region of primary importance to global rules, and Washington does not want to risk losing dominance.

There is no shortage of symbolic events fueling these American concerns. For example: Three days ago, the Solomon Islands They declared It will prevent all foreign military ships from docking in their ports. A week ago, Honiara left unanswered requests to stop a US Coast Guard ship and a British Royal Navy ship: the Solomon Islands had signed on months earlier. Defense agreement with China.

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At the summit, Biden must prove credible, and push for, the attractive alternative the Chinese model offers. The concept of “Democracy”Beyond the flash trend unleashed in recent days. Agreement with the Solomon Islands (which Honiara signed despite widespread dissent from Australia, New Zealand, Japan and clearly the US) and a ten-day visit by the Foreign Minister, Wang YiHelp build a consensus around Beijing in the Indo-Pacific (esp Global Security Initiative considered by the party/state as the basis for the governance of the world order as an alternative to being led by the West).

At the same time, this Chinese activity attracts the attention of Washington, which is not so much tasked with building influence – it already exists and is significantly more desirable than China. America wants to prove that they have not lost touch, that they are still the reference model and, above all, will remain so in the future. This is a huge challenge – and it is not limited to the Indo-Pacific island countries.

For decades, the United States has disengaged diplomatically with Oceania, opening opportunities for China to increase its influence in the region. At the same time — also through Chinese infowar — the perception that the United States had abandoned the region was fueled. Now we’re at a point where we’re being pushed into counterforce, and Washington must hold back against its moves and the changed sentiments they’ve created.

The work is clear, and the summit at the end of September is a point of momentum and synthesis. In April, Daniel CrittenbrinkAssistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, E Kurt Campbell, National Security Council coordinator for the Indo-Pacific region, toured Solomon Islands, Fiji and Papua New Guinea. In June, the United States, along with Australia, New Zealand, Japan and the United Kingdom, launched “Blue Pacific Partners” to “build closer ties with governments in the Pacific.” Joint Declaration. In July, Vice President Kamala Harris Hosted a Pacific Forum meeting in which the US announced it would open embassies in Kiribati and Tonga and restore peacekeeping forces in the region. In August, Under Secretary of State Wendy Sherman New Zealand has convened a meeting of representatives of Pacific Island nations in Wellington.

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Sherman pledged U.S. assistance to “combat illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing and support inclusive economic growth,” among the issues those countries are addressing along with the larger, existential issue of climate change. Some island nations in the Indo-Pacific region are at risk of having part of their territory under related measures. Global warmingAnd it’s a gateway for American business — one that has caught up with its predecessor’s dangerous repudiation with the Biden administration.

“America has to worry about each of these countries and the direction they’re taking,” he explained Howard Stauffer, associate professor of homeland security at the University of New Haven. “The Chinese will give them money so we can provide them with other things like strategic military protection in case of an attack and assure them that we are fulfilling our obligations under the Paris Agreement. [sul clima]Because many of these countries will drown [a causa dell’innalzamento del livello del mare]”.

2015 Chinese Communist Party Secretary M, Head of State Xi Jinping, announced the creation of China’s South-South Climate Cooperation Fund, which will allocate $3.1 billion to help developing countries mitigate the effects of climate change. In April, Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Xie Feng, the Climate Action Cooperation Center for Pacific Island Countries was launched in Liaocheng, Shandong. According to Beijing’s story, the center will build the capacity of Pacific island nations to deal with climate change.

For the United States, rebuilding a scenario of hegemonic influence in the region is important from a military strategic perspective. Many of these island nations play a role in the waterways connecting Australia with the Indo-Pacific region. Canberra’s value in US strategy for the region is not a vicariance; As the Solomon Islands close the Coral Sea from the north, it cannot be thought that Australia blocks access to the Pacific. That’s certainly an exaggeration, but this kind of dynamic is not lacking from Risko in strategic planning.

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Maintaining one’s priorities in indirect contexts, however, requires marrying respect for others, and for Washington the moment was decisive. The US must demonstrate credibility against the Chinese offer (another example: Capitol Hill struggles to approve a $60 million project for ocean climate resilience in Oceania, which pales in the face of the $3.1 billion promised by Beijing). At the same time, the United States can demonstrate the weaknesses, inconsistencies, and dangers of the model proposed by China—and, as Sherman warned, many countries accept these arguments about the “risks of working with authoritarian regimes.”

If it is true that politico-military issues are at the top of America’s priority list, the United States is called upon to listen to the needs of those island nations seeking protection from disasters. Climate change The main form of protection for their development. Events like the summit at the end of the month also help demonstrate listening.