After a gap of 75 years, the Japanese are back to operating fighter jets from flat-deck warships at sea. The last time the Japanese Navy launched a plane from an aircraft carrier was during the World War II (1939-1945).
‘Quad’ has some ‘steel to its spine’ The first ever ‘in-person’ meeting of leaders of the newly-minted four- nation grouping recommitted to partnership, shared security and prosperity—a free and open Indo-Pacific.
The meeting also led to crucial announcements detailing joint efforts on developing critical technology, infrastructure development and addressing climate change besides sharing satellite data, cooperating in space and cyber domains. The four countries will also fund and finance research by 100 scholars each year by way of fellowships.
The scope includes: Out-pacing China; developing a National Defense Strategy; streamlining and strengthening cooperation with US allies and partners, particularly in the Indo-Pacific; bolstering deterrence; accelerate development of new operational concepts; emerging capabilities and future force posture.
Quad partners – Japan and Australia – we’re continuing to identify options for cooperation in the areas of vaccine manufacturing capacity in India
‘new play book’ terming what he said was the new ‘cold war’ which had offence and defence. “You cannot defend your way through. Your strategy should not only be to retard China’s advance, we have to good ourselves”. There was a need to spend more. Put your finger on two fields where you just cannot play defensive, you got to play offence. It is about running faster than the other guy instead of just trying to slow the other guy down.
NATO had looked after post-world war interests of Europe and US, the common security interests of ‘Quad’ are still being defined, but would be clearly aimed at countering Chinese aggression of not following a rules based order.
The US is clear that in order to deal with these things in the future, we are going to hold China accountable to follow the rules whether it relates to the South China Sea or the North China Sea, or their agreement made on Taiwan, or a whole range of other things.
The meet at Tokyo on October 6 literally set the tone for the grouping to mature. It sent a clear message that the grouping is moving into the next domain– being weaponized.
From a reluctant player in the ‘Quad’, or the Quadrilateral, India is now shedding its ambivalence, to openly work towards making the alliance stronger and a seamlessly effective entity in the Indo-Pacific.
Australia, a significant ally of India, US and Japan, has shed its ‘reticence’ on the South China Sea and ‘rejected’ China’s expansive maritime claims while terming these ‘inconsistent’ with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).