International Security


Table of Contents

Question 1

One source of insecurity in East Asia is the instability from North Korea. Recently, North Korea has performed some actions that have gone against the agreements that countries in East Asia agreed on. As a result, North Korea poses a very big terrorist threat to the region. This year, the country has forced two nuclear tests and fired over twenty missiles to test its military strength.  The resulting effect is that other countries view this as a terrorist threat, because why else would a country be practicing for war if there is no war? China is wary, not to push North Korea’s buttons because there is no telling what would happen if they were provoked. North Korea isn’t backing down either, and it continues to test its weapons, causing more tension amongst East Asian countries. Currently, North Korea is almost a de Facto nuclear country and can easily threaten any country in the region or in the world (Godwin, 2008). It leads to a crisis and a lot of unnecessary tensions in the region because there is no telling what the country might do. What is even more threatening being the country’s ability to produce the weapons at such a fast rate. Once it is able to make such a weapon, it will change the security concerns and urgency of the region to a new level. Unless there is a way to end the programs, the threat could become permanent, and North Korea will fully become a nuclear state. A second threat in the region is ISIS which has been in the area since 2016 (Liu, 2016). Via social media, the terrorist group has managed to mobilize terrorist to carry out attacks in Indonesia, Malaysia and Bangladesh. Never before have east Asian countries faced such a threat, therefore, are they not well prepared to handle the terrorists. The East China Sea is also a cause of insecurity in the region due to the Chinese coastguard presence (Revere, 2016). Right now, all is well but is an important point to signal Japans’ military might in East Asia and a way of telling Tokyo to stay away from the South China Sea.

The sources of Chinese power are their buildup of arsenal and its economic power. Over the past few years, China has managed to build up its own arsenal of weapons by studying what the US has. It also has the capacity to engage in cyber warfare and other non-kinetic forms of war.  The massive buildup of power poses the question as the whether China is doing it for legit reasons or it wants to become a superpower and replace the United States (The National Security Strategy of The USA, 2002).  There is assurance that China is simply building its arsenal and economic might to protect itself against an imminent threat, but there are concerns. The massive arsenal reserves, the advantage it has due to its location, and the inception of a blue water navy suggest otherwise (Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, n.d.). It is clear that the country wants to keep its options open if a war breaks out. Economically, the country is a giant and will continue growing as so. Currently, it is using its economic influence to coerce allies to align themselves with her. China also has space warfare capabilities meaning that they can shoot satellites out of space (Tiezzi, 2015). Satellites are important for communication, and when they were launched into space, there was no consideration that someone could actually make a plan to shoot them down. Currently, the US is trying to find replacement options in case the satellites they have in space which serve military purposes are brought done by the Chinese. When it comes to defense

China is concerned about a shifting international environment, economic and social changes and a wealth of social contradictions (Yang, 2017). The international environment is not stable right now, with countries like the US bracing themselves for war in case North Korea is provoked enough to attack. Generally, there is unrest in most parts of the world. And that is enough to a cause of security concern in China. Additionally, the economic environment is good for the country right now, and generally all East Asian countries (Ximbo, 2000). As a result, China uses its economic might to coerce or force countries to do its bidding. It associates itself with countries it feels has some sought of benefit towards it. 

Question 2

Globalization is the interaction of international powers and practices through trade, culture and other social practices. Over the past years, there has been a rise in globalization as well as a rise in international insecurity, especially in the US (Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China, 2017). The United States has a powerful army but is unable to protect itself from nonphysical matters such as technology assets and information. Technology and information have a very big impact on the security of a nation. Terrorist activities are harder to monitor due to globalization because it is not stated carrying out an attack, but single people or groups of people. These people cause of threat, and since it is not a specific country carrying out the attack, it becomes hard to monitor or carry out retaliatory attacks. Globalization has greatly increased the skills and potential of terrorists due to the huge amount of resources available to them. To add on that, globalization has provided an avenue where people can easily obtain weapons and use then in destruction. International online shopping has made it possible for some people to access high power weapons- weapons they couldn’t have had access to if at all the world was not a village (Moore, 2011). The result is that smaller powers can procure these weapons and create an imminent threat because they will have arsenals which are not proportionate to their economy. States that were already powerful also become stronger at the same time states that weren’t powerful also make an effort to become stronger. The resulting effect is America will be at risk because another country can easily carry out an attack due to the weapons procured. 

International terrorism has been on the rise and can be attributed to globalization. When different cultures interact, there will be sympathizers for terrorists, and they can easily get the funding they need. Moreover, the linkages terrorists form is important in passing the message and performing the attacks. The linkages can span countries, and they can prove useful if the terrorists want a place to stay or want to procure some weapons (Donnely, 2017). It has facilitated the movement of terrorists across borders because globalization has enables some areas to be free of border passes and patrol. For instance, in Europe, one can travel anywhere as long as they have an EU passport. The resulting effect is terrorists can easily transverse these borders and cause harm.

Technology also poses a greater threat to US security than efforts by Russia and China to project their power beyond their borders. A rise in tech has broadened the scope by which attacks could be carried out. Currently, attackers still prefer bombs over bots, but it has been proven that a technological attack could be just as lethal. In 2013, Syrian rebels took over the Huffington Post, Twitter and the New York time and that was just a glimpse of what cyber terrorism could do (CATO INSTITUTE, 2015). The thing with cyber terrorism is that at times it is hard to pinpoint the origin, but it receives a lot of media attention, sometimes blowing the situation put of control. Technology has also made it possible for people to collect funds, especially terrorists. His could lead to faster, mobilization and planning, a far cry from what was possible before technology came into play. It is now easier to set up illegal websites and other methods of getting fund from sponsors and sympathizers. Funds go a long way; they are used to coerce more people into terrorism, pay workers and buy weapons (CATO INSTITUTE, 2015). Perhaps the ability to buy more weapons it the biggest threat because now other countries or terrorist organizations have the ability to threaten o even carry out attacks, they can also carry out surveillance, and be aware of secrets about the US army. To add on that, technology has made it easy for information to be generated and spread faster into the world, therefore; threats can be spread in lighting speed globally. Technology poses a greater threat to the US because it has the ability to mobilize attacks.

The US has a big military, and China has asserted its military power, especially in the East China Sea (Al-Rodhan & Kuepfer, 2007). The country has also expanded its arsenal to the extent it seems an international threat. The weapons coupled with the economic prowess of the country seem a very big threat. Russia is not a different story. It also has a big war chest, and its economic might makes it a major threat. It has supported countries such as Syria, and all these actions seem like a threat to the US. However, neither are an as big threat as technology, globalization and weak states. A weak state has developed and gathered weapons big enough to poses a threat to the US. An example is North Korea which is almost a fully nuclear country. Globalization has made it easy to traverse the globe, get weapons and recruit more people (Coats, 2017). Actually, with the rise of globalization, there has been an increase in the number of terrorist attacks. It is now easier for people to cross borders especially with some regions doing away with custom passes. Therefore, smaller groups of people can be collected across borders, and a terrorist activity carried out on American soil. Technology, on the other hand, has made it easier for the collection of funds and spreading of messages. Technology has also made it easier for cyber-attacks, and that is very bad when it comes to economics. 

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