IN THE JOURNAL | INDONESIA 360
Neighborhood insecurity
October-December 2017
By: Keith Loveard

As the underpinning arc that forms the southeastern boundary of the continent of Asia, Indonesia cannot help but be affected by current tensions in the region, not least between the United States and China. An aggressive posture by US President Donald Trump threatens to collide head-on with China’s aspirations to become a leading superpower, in particular in Asia. Into this problematic equation comes a blustering North Korea, threatening to create a moment like the assassination of Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo in 1914, plunging the world into war.

Increasingly, foreign policy analysts see the emergence of a Thucydides Trap situation, in which the contest for primacy among superpowers has the potential to turn chaotic with the smallest spark.

Caught in the middle



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