1st Edition

Explaining Contemporary Asian Military Modernization
The Myth of Asia’s Arms Race

  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after April 19, 2021
ISBN 9780367506780
April 19, 2021 Forthcoming by Routledge
224 Pages 21 B/W Illustrations

USD $160.00

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Book Description

This book proposes a novel theoretical framework of ‘interactive arming’, in order to explain armament dynamics in contemporary Asia.

Frequently, the modernisation of contemporary naval forces in Asia is described as an "arms race", with the underlying assumption being that weapons acquisitions and increases in defense expenditure are competitive and bilateral and due to conflicting purposes or mutual fears. This book argues that the concept of an ‘arms race’ is an unsuitable one for explaining contemporary military modernisation in 21st century Asia. Instead, it proposes a novel and innovative concept of ‘interactive arming’, and argues that what drives conflict is political rivalry and not weapons acquisitions. Instead of perceiving of arming as abnormal behavior, the book views arming as a natural strategic behavior of states and military modernisation as a basic requirement for a state’s ability to survive.

This book will be of much interest to students of Asian security, strategic studies and International Relations in general.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction

2. The "Arms Race" Fallacy

3. Arming in Asia

4. Complex Decision-making

5. The Geostrategic Environment

6. Complementary Behavior

7. Political Rivalry

8. Conclusion

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Sheryn Lee is a Lecturer in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology, Macquarie University, Australia.