ASEAN : Facing Defense and Global Security Challenges

“Most people want security in this world, not only liberty”

Henry Louis Mencken-American journalist, 1880-1956

Defence and security is an essential for the sustainability of a nation. National security is the requirement to maintain the survival of the state through the use of economic, military and political power and the exercise of diplomacy.

Each country and nation in the world not only requires independence only, but also requires a sense of security. To realize a sense of security that the state will try to fill it by using the components of the defense. In this new era, defense components of a country becomes more complex than before. Defense system can be made by each country, as well as collectively. One sample form of collective defense is the defense cooperation within the NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization).

After the second world war the countries in the world no longer divided into two poles. In the beginning after the second world war,  this world controlled by the power of USA with its allies. Over time the emerging new powers that have the potential to become a rival to the USA. The strength came from countries that have begun to emerge as a developed country such as China, India, and Brazil. That may have triggered the emergence of new groups in the map of international politics and defense.

ASEAN as a regional organization will be affected by it. For that ASEAN also needs to make efforts to improve regional defense capability.

ASEAN Summit in last May 2011, provides an opportunity for its 10 member states to review the defense and security context of the continuing thrust as a pivotal regional grouping engaged in aligning major power interests in Southeast Asia. In strategic terms, there are five dimensions of military security that together define the political, economic and socio-cultural success of the ASEAN Security Community.

First, Satelllite-based cyber defense: the use of satellite communications technology to transmit, encrypt, capture and control the transmission and content of military communications in space, including tracking and intercepting systems utilized and deployed by the military.

The United States, Russia, Japan and China dominate space-based defense technology. European countries, Australia, South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore provide first and second-tier advanced communications technology systems deployed by land, sea and air forces.

Second, Strategic Nuclear: nuclear weapons with high-grade explosive capability with launch-capabilities of over 6,500 kilometers from land, sea and air. The United States and Russia lead the field with over 8,000-12,000 strategic nuclear warheads with command and control capabilities. China and India have fewer warheads, shorter launches as well as lesser command and control capability.

Third, Ballistic Nuclear: nuclear weapons with launch capability at ranges of 1,500-2,000 kilometers.The United States, Russia, China, India, France, the United Kingdom and North Korea are states that possess warheads and delivery systems linked to tactical nuclear weapons, deployed in tandem with conventional forces.

Fourth, Tri-Service Conventional Defense: “The military balance” usually associated with distribution and the quality of conventional army, navy and air forces’ ability to defend territorial integrity and maintain “deterrence” in conventional terms. The US is the only power with Carrier Strike Group (CSG) capability in the region as well as worldwide.

Fifth, Undersea Capability: deployment of undersea nuclear powered/nuclear-weapon submarine deployment, armed with strategic missile strike capabilities. Only the United States has the range capability in terms of numbers and accuracy, with Russia, China and India actively developing anti-ship missile capability, designed at enhancing their respective “strategic space” and “far sea” presence.

The above macro-security dimensions underwrite both the intra-regional and trans-regional economic relations. Japan, South Korea and later China benefited from American “security assurance” that provided economic, trade and invesment commitments in the Pacific. ASEAN today has become a community of 10 nations with a combined GDP of US$1.4 trillion.

The security, trade and investment complementarities linking Northeast Asia, Southeast Asia and the Indian Ocean are covered by America’s critical role as the “security assurance” underpinning trans-regional stability. It survived upheavals in Southeast Asia, periodic crises over the Taiwan Straits and occasional tensions in the Korean peninsula.

The rise of China and India as regional and global economic powers has given rise to a desire by both nations to enhance “strategic space” in their respective “core areas of national interest”, in Northeast Asia and the Indian Ocean respectively. China and India’s core area of security presence will be taken into greater account as each nation increases its conventional power capability and affects ASEAN’s stance on regional security.

Reference : Juwono Sudarsono – @ Jakarta Post

Perihal alfanpresekal
Mahasiswa Teknik Komputer - Universitas Indonesia

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