The Japan-Australia joint declaration on security cooperation and Asia-Pacific strategic geometries

National security Australia Pacific Area Asia

William Tow, of the Australian National University argues that the March 2007 Japan-Australia Joint Declaration on Security Cooperation was symbolic of one of two possibilities that Australia foreign policy must chose between: 'a strategy of regional engagement designed to pursue community-building and avoid security dilemmas, or one that designates China as a rising strategic challenge that ultimately cannot be accommodated and thus must be contained with like-minded allies.' Despite the fears that the Joint Declaration represents a step in the militarization of the foreign policies of both countries, Tow concludes that the Joint Declaration 'will not constitute an enduring or even very important component of the Asia-Pacific region's future security architecture. I am not convinced that this agreement or the concurrent strategic geometries borne from hedging, balancing and bandwagoning now under way in the region will result in complete instability or lead to inevitable conflict.'

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