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Global Security Briefing Profile

Global Security Briefing

English, National/National politics/National assembly, 1 season, 134 episodes, 4 days, 5 hours, 42 minutes
About
Global Security Briefing provides regular insights from leading international experts to help you make sense of the far-reaching changes affecting international security around the globe. Hosted by analysts from RUSI's International Security Studies team, the podcast looks at how the UK can best shape its foreign and security policies in an increasingly dynamic international environment. The views or statements expressed by guests are their own and their appearance on the podcast does not imply an endorsement of them or any entity they represent. Views and opinions expressed by RUSI employees are those of the employees and do not necessarily reflect the view of RUSI.
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Transatlantic Cooperation on Policy Towards China and the Indo-Pacific

With the rise of China and the centrality of the Indo-Pacific to economic and geopolitical affairs, we look at the challenges faced by governments in Europe and North America. A history of solidarity and common approaches to dealing with threats affecting allies across the Atlantic might lead to the assumption that a transatlantic strategy and its supporting institutions would naturally emerge with regards to China. Shared commitments to universal human rights and adherence to a rules-based global order should also drive a convergence of policies. However, a variety of national political and trade considerations drive Europeans and North Americans in somewhat different directions when dealing with China. On this episode of GSB, host Neil Melvin is joined by Philip Shetler-Jones, Senior Research Fellow at RUSI, and Andrew Cainey, RUSI Senior Associate Fellow and Founding Director of the UK National Committee on China, to discuss their latest research paper which tackles important questions such as: how much transatlantic cooperation on policy towards China is happening; why has it been difficult for allies on both sides of the Atlantic to agree on working together; and what do the differences between the Trump and Biden administrations’ approaches tell us about prospects for the future? This episode is brought to you as part of a RUSI project supported by the Carnegie Corporation of New York.
3/6/202453 minutes, 32 seconds
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2023 Security Review: GSB Holiday Special Part 1

As the year draws to a close, the International Security team at RUSI reviews the biggest geo-political events of the year in this two-part holiday special. From the ongoing war in Ukraine to the crisis in Gaza, 2023 has seen some major global events. But how did 2023 pan out when compared to what was expected at the beginning of the year? What was foreseen and what has been unexpected? And, more importantly, how have security events altered the trajectory of the affected regions? Host Neil Melvin is joined by Emily Ferris, Ed Arnold and Tobias Borck to discuss how this year has shaped Russia, Northern Europe and the Middle East, and what we can expect from 2024.
12/27/202348 minutes, 30 seconds
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Where is the War in Ukraine Heading in 2024?

As the war enters its second winter and third year, are we now facing the prospect of battles lasting until at least 2025? The prospect of an immediate decisive military breakthrough for Ukraine has disappeared. Kyiv’s offensive – launched in the summer – has largely subsided, with Ukraine’s troops exhausted from over six months of intense fighting. At the same time, Ukraine’s key international support pillars are under pressure. Depleted Western armouries will have far less to provide to Ukraine in the year ahead. Western political unity is being questioned, with struggles in the US Congress to ensure that Kyiv receives the critical military and economic assistance that it will need in 2024. And the EU is facing questions about whether there will be the unanimity to agree a €50-billion aid package and to open membership negotiations. Within Ukraine there are growing signs of concern about the current direction of the war. With the military campaign appearing to face a period of prolonged stalemate, in this episode of Global Security Briefing we are joined by Mark Galeotti, RUSI Senior Associate Fellow and Principal Director, Mayak Intelligence.
12/13/202351 minutes, 34 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans Series Finale with Veerle Nouwens

Originally published 6 April 2023. After over two years, the Bridging the Oceans podcast is coming to an end. Bridging the Oceans, hosted by Veerle Nouwens, was the first podcast dedicated specifically to the defence and security of the Indo-Pacific. It explored what the Indo-Pacific is, where its limits lay, and what the fast-evolving defence and security issues were in this dynamic part of the world. Together with a diverse range of experts, the podcast analysed today’s top geopolitical questions in the Indo-Pacific, understanding how these were seen within the region itself, and considered how these issues may impact the wider region including the United Kingdom.
4/6/20234 minutes, 21 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #47: The Future of US–China Relations

Originally published 15 March 2023. The recent annual meetings of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and the National People’s Congress (NPC) - the ‘Two Sessions’ - have already confirmed the national budget, high-level personnel appointments, and noted China's foreign and security outlook. Newly appointed Foreign Minister Qin Gang used tough language when discussing the US, while President Xi accused the West – led by the US – of seeking China's containment. Amid growing strains in the Sino-US relationship, our host Veerle Nouwens sits down with Bonny Lin, Senior Fellow for Asian Security and Director of the China Power Project at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, DC, to discuss the future trajectory of the bilateral relationship.
3/15/202337 minutes, 27 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #46: India’s Year of Presidencies

Originally published 15 February 2022.  The current year is set to be a significant one for India, as it takes on both the G20 and Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) presidencies – two landmark moments for the Modi government ahead of the highly anticipated general elections next year. Host Veerle Nouwens sits down with Garima Mohan, Senior Fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States, to discuss just what the Indian government hopes to achieve through these two significant positions. What impact will these events have on China–India relations? How does New Delhi view the G20 and SCO when compared to other minilaterals that India is engaging in? And what will count as a success for New Delhi and the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party? For answers to these questions and more, tune in now!
2/15/202327 minutes, 15 seconds
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A New War Over Nagorno-Karabakh in the South Caucasus?

With growing uncertainty about the regional power balance in Nagorno-Karabakh, we analyse the concerns that another conflict could erupt. For nearly 30 years, the confrontation over landlocked Nagorno-Karabakh persisted through numerous rounds of negotiations and a massive regional arms build-up between Azerbaijan and Armenia. In 2020, Azerbaijan launched an offensive using its modernised armed forces, overwhelming the Armenian defences and reclaiming the occupied territories as well as key parts of Karabakh itself. The agreement at the end of the conflict led to the introduction of a Russian peacekeeping force and proposals for new transport corridors to open up the region. The war of 2020 also unsettled the region’s geopolitical balance, with Russia further weakened by the ongoing Ukraine war, and Turkey and Iran taking a stronger interest in the South Caucasus. Western countries are belatedly stepping up their engagement. What are the prospects of finding a peaceful solution to the Nagorno-Karabakh dispute and avoiding ethnic cleansing of the region? Host Neil Melvin sits down with Laurence Broers from Conciliation Resources and Amanda Paul from the European Policy Centre to answer this very question. Tune in now!
2/8/202350 minutes, 5 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #45: China’s Quest for Control at Home and Abroad

Originally published 21 December 2022.  Tough times lie ahead for Beijing, with a turbulent external environment now matched with domestic unrest. To round out 2022, Veerle and Dr Sheena Chestnut Greitens, Associate Professor at the LBJ School of Public Affairs, UT Austin, reflect on a turbulent year for China policy. From a downward spiral in Sino-US relations and tensions over Taiwan, to the war in Ukraine and Beijing’s relationship with Moscow, this has been a tumultuous year. The search for a predictable framework to relations between China and the West provides some limited hope for 2023, but the fundamental differences between these actors remain, and another difficult year likely lies ahead.
12/21/202242 minutes, 13 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #44: Between A ROK and a Hard Place?

Originally published 9 November 2022. Six months in, South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol still treads a careful balance on some policy matters. Veerle speaks with Ms Saeme Kim, Korea Foundation Visiting Fellow in RUSI’s Indo-Pacific Programme from 2021–2022. Saeme explores the policy continuities and changes in the Republic of Korea (ROK) from former President Moon Jae-in to current President Yoon Suk-yeol, outlining the country’s soon-to-be-launched Indo-Pacific Strategy and some bold new endeavours with partners like the US. As tensions with Beijing and Pyongyang remain, greater cooperation with partners in Europe and the Indo-Pacific could come at a cost in Seoul’s own immediate regional environment. Despite this, a more outward-facing and networked South Korea with expertise in specific subregions and policy areas is likely to materialise. The UK, in particular, stands to gain from working more closely with Seoul, and Saeme offers a few ideas in this regard.
11/9/202224 minutes, 58 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #43: China’s 20th Party Congress: Foreign and Domestic Implications

Originally published 26 October 2022. Does the recent Congress indicate triumph or challenges ahead for China? Veerle Nouwens speaks with two guests on China’s 20th Party Congress, in which Xi Jinping attained an unprecedented third term in office and brought in a set of personnel changes in Party governance. Raffaello Pantucci, RUSI Senior Associate Fellow, explores how Xi’s speech and the Party Congress’s work report indicate an emphasis on internal stability and continuity in domestic and foreign affairs, including on Taiwan. Dr Lai I-Chung, President of Taiwan’s Prospect Foundation, explores differences in language and the listing of topics in the work report as a possible indication of subtle messaging to audiences that Beijing is serious about reunification. An accelerated push for peaceful reunification is to be expected with below-the-threshold advances that circumvent official channels for communication across the strait, while Beijing will further limit Taiwan’s space on the international stage. For this, I-Chung has some ideas of how countries, including the UK, can help.
10/26/20221 hour, 2 minutes, 14 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #42: The Rising Tide of Competition in the Indian Ocean Region

Originally published 28 September 2022.  As strategic and economic interest in the region grows, how can states around the Indian Ocean and their partners mitigate the risk of conflict? Jeffrey Payne of the Near East South Asia Center for Strategic Studies in Washington joins Veerle and Aaditya to discuss growing competition in the Indian Ocean region. Why has interest in the region among nuclear maritime states – including India, China and the US – grown steadily over recent years? They consider the strategic risks to the region as a nuclear flashpoint and what steps could be taken to stabilise it.
9/28/202250 minutes, 29 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #41: Cut from the Same Cloth? Ukraine and the Cross-Strait Crisis

Originally published 23 September 2022. What lessons can be learned from the war in Ukraine when tackling the cross-strait crisis? In this special episode of Bridging the Oceans, Veerle speaks with Yuichi Hosoya of Keio University, Tokyo about the parallels between the war in Ukraine and the current standoff over Taiwan, and the extent to which these comparisons are valid. They examine escalation scenarios across the Taiwan Strait, in light of Russia’s pattern of behaviour before invading Ukraine. And they discuss what role Japan could play in the maintenance of peace and stability in the region, as well as which key networks and strategic alliances Japan will be relying on.
9/23/202238 minutes, 3 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #40: Trust in Truss: What’s Next for UK Policy on China and the Indo-Pacific?

Originally published 14 September 2022. Will UK foreign policy under Liz Truss be business as usual or a radical departure? While the UK’s relations with China have been strained in recent years, Raffaello Pantucci, Senior Associate Fellow at RUSI, explains how current policy towards China may experience a radical shift and, should that happen, what the repercussions would be. Similarly, the Hon. Alexander Downer, the former Australian foreign minister, joins Veerle in exploring Liz Truss’ views on the Indo-Pacific, how she may need to balance realities in both the Euro-Atlantic and Indo-Pacific regions, and whether a values-driven foreign policy will resonate with Indo-Pacific partners.
9/14/20221 hour, 6 minutes, 42 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #39: Anything but 'New Normal': How Taiwan Strait Tensions Impact Japan

Originally published 31 August 2022. Thoughts from Japan on the recent cross-strait tensions and a look at what lies ahead In this episode, Veerle speaks with Li Hao, Research Fellow at the Japan Institute of International Affairs (JIIA), about the Japanese reaction to Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi’s recent visit to Taiwan and China’s subsequent live-fire drills in the region. They discuss the direct impacts the military exercises have had on Japan and consider the larger implications these events may have on Japan’s economy and security policy in the future. They also look at the possibility of war breaking out in the region and what Japan’s role could be in moderating and mitigating harm.
8/31/202233 minutes, 48 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #38: Cross-Strait Crisis: Taiwan’s View and the Way Forward

Originally published 19 August 2022.  Reflections from Taipei offer a different perspective on recent cross-Strait tensions. In this episode, Veerle speaks with activist Brian Hioe, a founder of the New Bloom Magazine – an online magazine covering activism and youth politics in Taiwan and the Asia-Pacific – about the Taiwanese reaction to US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit and China’s subsequent live-fire military drills. While the latter marked an escalation in tensions and tactics, Taiwanese officials and their public have declined to be alarmed. Meanwhile, Chinese economic sanctions have also not inflicted serious harm. Rather than intimidating Taipei, Beijing’s behaviour may have inadvertent and self-defeating repercussions in upcoming Taiwanese local elections and the political scene. Tune in to find out what lies ahead in Taiwanese domestic politics, military reforms, and the island’s foreign relationships.
8/19/202235 minutes, 3 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #37: Japan’s National Security and the Ukraine War

Originally published on 30 June 2022.  As the war in Ukraine rages on, Japan debates its next security steps. Veerle is joined by Tetsuo Kotani, Professor at Meikai University and Senior Fellow at the Japan Institute of International Affairs. They explore the level of Japanese domestic support for sanctions policy on Russia, and the ongoing Sino-Russian military activities at sea around Japan and in Japan’s airspace. They also ask whether the ongoing situation in Ukraine is impacting Japan’s view of its national security and defence strategy, and what Japan’s expected outcomes are from the NATO summit in Madrid.
6/30/202226 minutes
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Bridging the Oceans #36: What Foreign and Defence Policy Awaits Under a New Marcos Presidency?

Originally published on 25 May 2022. A post-Duterte presidency offers opportunities for policy shifts. In this episode of Bridging the Oceans, Veerle is joined by Julio S Amador III, Founder and CEO of Amador Research Services. Together, they discuss the recent elections in the Philippines, which saw Marcos Jr elected as the new president of the country. Following President Duterte, whose relations with Beijing grew ever closer, what shape will Philippine foreign policy towards the US and China take? And what national defence and security policies are likely to emerge under a new Marcos administration? Finally, to what extent does the ongoing war in Ukraine impact Manila’s foreign and domestic policies?
5/25/202238 minutes, 2 seconds
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Episode 26: Arctic Security and the UK

This episode examines the evolving approach of the UK to security and defence in the Arctic, as the region undergoes significant shifts due to climate change, Russia’s increasingly aggressive foreign policy and military modernisation, and non-Arctic states – notably China – taking an increasing interest in the region’s security. Dr Duncan Depledge from the International Relations, Politics and History department of Loughborough University and Dr Caroline Kennedy-Pipe, Professor of War Studies at Loughborough, discuss with Dr Neil Melvin, Director, International Security Studies at RUSI, how the UK has sought to upgrade its policies towards the Arctic as a ‘near Arctic state’, and how it has begun to rebuild its security and defence engagement with Arctic partner countries as a result of Russia’s growing strength in the region.
5/18/202249 minutes, 31 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #35: Macron, France’s EU Presidency, and the Indo-Pacific

Originally published 11 May 2022.  France remains fully committed to its new Indo-Pacific Strategy, but implementation will be crucial. In this episode, Veerle is joined by Dr Antoine Bondaz, Director of the Korea and Taiwan Programmes at the Fondation pour la Recherche Stratégique (FRS). Together, they discuss domestic and foreign policy pressures on France’s new strategy, and what Indo-Pacific-related achievements have emerged from its presidency of the EU Council. They explore how France’s relationships in the Indo-Pacific are evolving – with China, Taiwan, India, Japan and Australia – and what Europe must do to make its engagement in the region a success, despite pressures closer to home.
5/11/202246 minutes, 16 seconds
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Mind the Gulf #8: Where Are We Now and What Comes Next?

Originally published 5 May 2022. Hosts Darya Dolzikova and Tobias Borck wrap up this season of 'Mind the Gulf' podcasts with a discussion on the current state of the Iran nuclear negotiations and possible future trajectories with guests Dr Naysan Rafati (International Crisis Group) and Dr Cinzia Bianco (European Council on Foreign Relations). The discussion touches on the dynamics at play in Washington, Tehran and Europe, and on their likely implications for the future of regional security in the Gulf.
5/5/202254 minutes, 47 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #34: Ukraine’s War and the Lessons for Taiwan

Originally published 27 April 2022. While the war in Ukraine ravages on, Taiwan is watching and learning. In this episode, Veerle is joined by Dr Norah Huang, Director for International Relations at the Prospect Foundation in Taipei, to explore similarities between the current war in Ukraine and potential cross-Strait scenarios. They ask what lessons Beijing and Taipei might be learning from the war in Ukraine, and discuss what this means for Taiwan’s future relations with the US and Europe.
4/27/202220 minutes, 58 seconds
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Mind the Gulf #7: UK Relations with Iran and the Gulf States

Originally published 21 April 2022.  Hosts Darya Dolzikova and Tobias Borck look at the UK’s relationships with Iran and the Gulf monarchies, as well as London’s role in nuclear diplomacy with Iran and regional security. Their guests Dr Sanam Vakil (Chatham House) and Professor Ali Ansari (St Andrews) trace the UK’s long history in the Gulf, and highlight the challenges facing policymakers in London.
4/21/202245 minutes, 26 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #33: India and the Russia-Ukraine War

Originally published 21 April 2022. India’s non-aligned position is under increasing pressure. Veerle is joined by Aaditya Dave, RUSI Research Analyst, to discuss India’s reaction to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the domestic discourse and policy debate in New Delhi, and the divergent course that India has taken from its Quad partners. They also discuss UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s current visit to New Delhi as part of the ‘Indo-Pacific Tilt’, and what opportunities lie ahead for European partners to deepen their bilateral relations with India.
4/21/202223 minutes, 38 seconds
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Mind the Gulf #6: The View from Israel

Originally published 7 April 2022.  In this episode, hosts Darya Dolzikova and Tobias Borck discuss Israel’s perspective on Iran, the Iranian nuclear programme, and wider regional security. Their guest, Professor Yossi Mekelberg, Associate Fellow, Chatham House Middle East and North Africa Programme, explains why Israel sees Iran as the main threat to its security, and suggests that Israel’s threats to destroy Iranian nuclear facilities should be taken seriously.
4/7/20221 hour, 18 minutes, 47 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #32: Influence and Interference in Europe and the Indo-Pacific

Originally published 1 April 2022. Tactics below the threshold of war will need continued attention. In this episode, Veerle is joined by Alexander Neill, an analyst and consultant on Asia-Pacific geopolitical risk and security, foreign affairs and defence based in Singapore. They discuss current RUSI research on state-led interference as a tool of geopolitical competition below the threshold of warfare, and how this is experienced in the Indo-Pacific. They examine how the debate around this topic is evolving here and in Southeast Asia; do we see the challenge of illegitimate sub-threshold competition and experience such activities in the same way? They highlight noteworthy instances that have brought the issue of interference and disinformation into the spotlight, explore what countermeasures have been put in place, and consider what the road ahead might look like.
4/1/202231 minutes
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Mind the Gulf #5: The View from the United Arab Emirates

Originally published 24 March 2022.  Hosts Darya Dolzikova and Tobias Borck look at the UAE’s perspectives on Iran and its nuclear programme, as well as regional security. They are joined by Sheikha Najla Al-Qassimi (B’Huth), who explains how the UAE balances its deep security concerns about Iran’s behaviour in the region and its extensive trading relations with the Islamic Republic. She also touches on the UAE’s views of the US, Russia and China. In addition, Darya and Tobias discuss the latest developments in the region and the nuclear talks.
3/24/202255 minutes, 22 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #31: Ukraine’s Indo-Pacific Impact: The View from Tokyo

Originally published 16 March 2021. The repercussions of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine go far beyond Europe. Veerle is joined by Jimbo Ken, Professor in International Relations at Keio University. While Ukraine seems geographically remote as seen from Tokyo, the impact of the war can be felt in Japan’s relations with Russia and China. The war has heightened Japan’s concerns that China may attempt something similar through a forceful takeover of Taiwan. Japan has therefore joined the West in placing sanctions on Russia and sending non-lethal equipment to Ukraine – an unprecedented move for Tokyo. A more forward-leaning, assertive Japan is in the making.
3/16/202225 minutes, 17 seconds
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Mind the Gulf #4: The View from Qatar and Oman

Originally published 10 March 2022.  In this episode, hosts Darya Dolzikova and Tobias Borck discuss Qatar and Oman’s perspectives on Iran, its nuclear programme and regional security. Dr Andreas Krieg from King’s College London describes Qatar’s unique position in the region and explains how the country balances relations with Iran and its Arab neighbours. Turki al-Bulushi (Bloomberg) explains why neutrality is a core principle of Omani foreign policy, even in relations with its Gulf neighbours. Darya and Tobias also assess the latest developments in the region and the Iran nuclear talks.
3/10/20221 hour, 6 minutes, 25 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #30: Biden’s Indo-Pacific Approach: What’s New?

Originally published 2 March 2022. Veerle is joined by Lisa Curtis, Senior Fellow and Director of the Indo-Pacific Security Programme at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS). The Biden administration’s new strategy highlights the importance of prosperity. However, the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework still lacks details, while the Ukraine conflict is testing allies and partners both in Europe and the Indo-Pacific. Once again, the ties between the two regions are evident and place the US Indo-Pacific Strategy in a renewed context.
3/2/202226 minutes, 31 seconds
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Mind the Gulf #3: The View from Bahrain and Kuwait

Originally published 24 February 2022. Hosts Darya Dolzikova and Tobias Borck discuss Bahrain and Kuwait’s perspectives on the Iranian nuclear question and on broader regional security matters Hasan Alhasan, Research Fellow for Middle East Policy at IISS, explains why Bahrain feels threatened by Iran and is sceptical about a regional security dialogue, and Amnah Ibraheem, Visiting Scholar at the American University of Kuwait, outlines Kuwait’s unique position bordering both Saudi Arabia and Iran and its preference for multilateral diplomacy. Darya and Tobias also address the latest developments in the region.
2/24/20221 hour, 2 minutes, 55 seconds
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Mind the Gulf #2: The View from Saudi Arabia

Originally published 10 February 2022. Hosts Darya Dolzikova and Tobias Borck discuss the Saudi Arabian strategic perspective with Mohammed Alyahya, former editor-in-chief of the Al-Arabiya English TV network. Mohammed outlines Saudi Arabia’s views on regional security, Iran and its nuclear programme, and explains why he is sceptical that a new nuclear deal can lead to improved relations between Iran and its Arab neighbours. Darya and Tobias also briefly discuss the latest developments in the nuclear negotiations and regional security.
2/10/202246 minutes, 47 seconds
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Mind the Gulf #1: The View from Iran

Originally published 27 January 2022. In the first episode of 'Mind the Gulf', hosts Darya Dolzikova and Tobias Borck introduce the series and speak with Professor Nasser Hadian from the University of Tehran about Iranian views on regional security and the nuclear question. The podcast starts with Darya outlining the trajectory of international diplomacy around the Iranian nuclear programme and providing a quick backgrounder on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and the ongoing negotiations in Vienna. Tobias then gives a brief overview of how the often tense relations between Iran and other states in the Gulf and the wider Middle East have shaped regional security for the past half century. Later in the episode, Professor Hadian outlines Iran's key concerns, its relationship with Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf states, and the interaction between Iran's foreign policy and its nuclear programme, as well as offering his thoughts on the future of the JCPOA.  The podcast is part of RUSI's Iran in the Global Security Context project.
1/27/20221 hour, 4 minutes, 40 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #29: What’s All the RAUKUS About? The View from Washington

Originally published 22 December 2021.  AUKUS helps build regional deterrence, yet more is needed beyond defence cooperation. Veerle is joined by Dr Zack Cooper, Senior Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, who offers insights on how AUKUS fits into US strategic thinking on meeting the rising challenges in the Indo-Pacific for the US and its allies. Further cooperation beyond exclusive groupings focused on defence is needed, particularly in the areas of technology, trade and governance, and Zack explains how Europe and Indo-Pacific partners stand to play an important role. Tune in also for a discussion on what is meant by integrated deterrence.
12/22/202152 minutes, 19 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #28: What’s All the RAUKUS About? Japan’s Ambivalence and Looming Reality Check

Originally published 8 December 2021. In this episode, Veerle is joined by Dr Michito Tsuruoka, Associate Professor at Keio University in Japan to explore Japan’s reaction to the announcement of AUKUS, what this means for Japan’s immediate security environment, and how it fits into the regional security architecture. Tokyo will need to think critically what role it has to play in the Indo-Pacific’s defence and security landscape: will Japan be a passive participant or will it assume a more active role, on par with its closest strategic partners? Tokyo will need to overcome current legal, bureaucratic, and political hurdles .
12/8/202148 minutes
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Bridging the Oceans #27: What’s All the RAUKUS About? Southeast Asia’s Mixed Response

Originally published 24 November 2021. The defence partnership has divided opinion and frayed some partnerships. For Southeast Asia, the stakes are high, but consensus on AUKUS remains elusive. Veerle is joined by Dr Collin Koh, Research Fellow at the Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies of the S Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore. Dr Koh explains that Southeast Asian countries can largely be divided into three camps in their responses to AUKUS, with a particularly interesting analysis of Cambodia’s strategic outlook. The new partnership highlights once again some difficult questions for Southeast Asian countries regarding how to manage their own regional security, while maintaining ASEAN centrality and navigating growing tensions between the US and Beijing.
11/24/202151 minutes, 54 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #26: What’s all the RAUKUS About? A Focus on France

Originally published 10 November 2021.  The Australia defence partnership has divided opinion and frayed relationships. For France, trust will not easily be restored. ‘A stab in the back’ is how the French government described the AUKUS announcement, maintaining that it had been misled to believe the submarine deal with Australia would survive delays and cost overruns. But the impact of this agreement goes beyond just a botched defence industry deal. How can France and its partners in the Indo-Pacific rebuild trust and move forward to meet their common objectives in the region? Veerle is joined by Dr Valérie Niquet, Head of the Asia Department at the Foundation for Strategic Research in Paris, in seeking some of the answers.
11/10/202138 minutes, 26 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #25: What’s All the RAUKUS About? The View from Australia

Originally published 27 October 2021. The new defence partnership has divided opinion and frayed some relationships, but Australia’s logic is crystal clear. In this episode, Veerle is joined by Ashley Townshend, Director of Foreign Policy and Defence at the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney and Founding Convenor and Co-chair of the US-Australia Indo-Pacific Deterrence Dialogue. Against a backdrop of rising Chinese assertiveness in the Indo-Pacific and a perception that the US can no longer guarantee regional stability on its own, Australia took the bold decision to embark on an ambitious defence partnership with the US and UK, to France’s fury. France’s Ambassador to Australia has yet to return but, while Canberra seeks to rebuild its partnership with Paris, it has bigger fish to fry.
10/27/202152 minutes, 47 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #24: US Perspectives on Maritime Security in the Indian Ocean Region

Originally published 15 September 2021 While the Pacific is in greater focus, the Indian Ocean region is of growing importance to the US. Veerle is joined by Jeffrey Payne, who leads the maritime security programme at the Near East South Asia (NESA) Center for Strategic Studies in Washington DC. Together, they explore why the Indian Ocean region’s maritime security is of importance to the US Indo-Pacific strategy, what activities are already in place and what could lie ahead. They also touch on Afghanistan, and how this impacts US strategy.
9/15/202152 minutes, 40 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #23: Sailing East of Suez – the Royal Navy and the Indo-Pacific

Originally published 1 September 2021 As part of the UK’s Indo-Pacific tilt, the Royal Navy stands to have a greater role in the region. In this episode, Veerle is joined by Admiral Sir Philip Jones, who retired from the Royal Navy in 2019 as First Sea Lord and Chief of the Naval Staff. They explore the Royal Navy’s past, present and future activities in the Indo-Pacific, and how these fit into the UK’s wider strategic approach to the region.
9/1/202144 minutes, 33 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #22: The Quad in the Indo-Pacific: Purpose, Policies and Perspectives

Originally published on 18 August 2021. The Quad brings together four countries with a shared purpose, but with some remaining differences. In this episode, Veerle and Dr Tanvi Madan, Director and Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington DC, discuss what brings the members of the Quad together, how their cooperation and activities may evolve, whether there are any significant divergences between the members, and whether a Quad+ could be seen in the future. One conclusion is clear: don’t call it Asian NATO.
8/18/202157 minutes, 13 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #21: African Agency and the Indo-Pacific

Originally published 4 August 2021. Africa’s Indian Ocean coastline is not often discussed as part of the Indo-Pacific, but it should be. Timothy Walker, Maritime Project Leader at the Institute for Security Studies in South Africa, discusses with Veerle the importance of the African littoral in different countries’ Indo-Pacific strategies, the priorities and challenges in furthering maritime security and the blue economy, and the impact of the increasing geopolitical focus on Africa on historical sensitivities in the region.
8/4/20211 hour, 5 minutes
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Bridging the Oceans #20: Japan’s Security in 2021: A New Defence White Paper

Originally published 21 July 2021 The New Defence White Paper offers insights into Tokyo’s regional security perspective. Veerle and Ken Moriyasu, US editor of Nikkei Asia, trace the continuities and changes in Japan’s 2021 Defence White Paper, as well as Tokyo’s enduring relationship with Washington, in the context of changing security dynamics in the Indo-Pacific. They also explore how domestic politics and public opinion continue to play an important role in how Japan responds to security challenges.
7/21/202148 minutes, 11 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #19: Taiwan’s Place in the Indo-Pacific

Originally published 7 July 2021 Long regarded as a potential Indo-Pacific flashpoint, what is Taipei’s view of the Indo-Pacific? In this episode, Veerle and Dr Lee Che-chuan, Director of National Security and Decision-Making at the Institute for National Defense and Security Research in Taiwan, discuss Taipei’s view of the Indo-Pacific. From tense cross-strait relations and pressures on Taiwan’s national security, to synergies between Taipei’s New Southbound Policy and other Indo-Pacific strategies, Taipei seeks to carve a role for itself in working with partners on key areas of regional prosperity and stability.
7/7/202149 minutes, 16 seconds
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The Future of US-Russia Relations and the Geneva Summit.

Dr Alex Cooley, the Claire Tow Professor of Political Science at Barnard College and Director of Columbia University's Harriman Institute, and Dr Andrey Kortunov, Director General of the Russian International Affairs Council, discuss the recent Geneva summit between Presidents Biden and Putin and its implications for strategic stability between the US and Russia with host Dr Neil Melvin, Director RUSI International Security Studies. 
6/30/202144 minutes, 38 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #18: Taking on Chinese Tech: Can the EU and US Find Common Ground?

Originally published 23 June 2021 Varying perspectives on Chinese tech have hampered a transatlantic convergence. In this episode, Veerle and Andrew Small, Senior Transatlantic Fellow with the German Marshall Fund’s Asia Program, discuss the presence of Chinese tech in Europe and explore whether there is an alignment of views and policy approaches on mitigating the risks arising from some Chinese corporations. What role is there for NATO in this effort, and how can Europe cooperate with the US in third countries? With transatlantic differences on norms and policy priorities still prevalent, transatlantic convergence still has some ways to go.
6/23/202142 minutes, 30 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #17: All but in Name: China’s Indo-Pacific Ambitions

Originally published 9 June 2021 Although China does not recognise the term Indo-Pacific, it still appreciates the region’s strategic value. In this episode, Veerle is joined by Dr Bates Gill, Professor of Asia-Pacific Security Studies at Macquarie University and Senior Associate Fellow at RUSI, to discuss China’s interests, ambitions and strategy in the Indo-Pacific region. Despite Beijing’s dismissal of the term ‘Indo-Pacific’ as a US construct, China approaches the Indian and Pacific Oceans as a connected space that is critical to its national security and global presence. The question is: what role does it seek to play?
6/9/202148 minutes, 16 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #16: A Fractured Transatlantic Approach to China and Space Policy

Originally published 2 June 2021 Concerns over China’s ambitions in outer space abound, but the transatlantic community is struggling to find common ground. In this episode, Veerle is joined by Marco Aliberti, Senior Research Fellow at the European Space Policy Institute (ESPI) in Vienna, Austria, to discuss the priorities and interests of Europe and the US in outer space and to examine their stances and perspectives on Chinese ambitions in space. While transatlantic cooperation on outer space seems like a natural fit, the partnership is complicated by the debate over competition and cooperation with China.
6/2/202150 minutes, 43 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #15: Large Ocean States in the South Pacific

Originally published on 19 May 2021 The complexity of the South Pacific is key to understanding the region’s place in the broader Indo-Pacific concept. In this episode, Veerle is joined by Anna Powles, Senior Lecturer at the Centre for Defence and Security Studies at Massey University in New Zealand, to discuss how history, identity and geography help shape the complex geostrategic landscape in the South Pacific. From secure supply chains of critical components like semiconductors to a push to promote liberal standards, the US and Europe are looking for ways to cooperate to ensure that the international digital domain remains free, open and secure. Will the Biden administration’s approach differ from that of Trump? How aligned are the US and Europe on tech cooperation, as well as norms and standards promotion? And where should the transatlantic community focus next?
5/19/202153 minutes, 51 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #14: A Transatlantic Tech Talk

Originally published 28 April 2021 Central to the transatlantic China dialogue is a wide-ranging and sometimes uneasy debate around tech. In this episode, Veerle is joined by Martijn Rasser, a Senior Fellow in the Technology and National Security Program at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), to discuss the ongoing transatlantic debate around technology and the digital domain. From secure supply chains of critical components like semiconductors to a push to promote liberal standards, the US and Europe are looking for ways to cooperate to ensure that the international digital domain remains free, open and secure. Will the Biden administration’s approach differ from that of Trump? How aligned are the US and Europe on tech cooperation, as well as norms and standards promotion? And where should the transatlantic community focus next?
4/28/202143 minutes, 17 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #13: Japan’s Engagement with Southeast Asia

Originally published 14 April 2021 This week, Veerle is joined by Dr Saya Kiba, Associate Professor at Komatsu University in Japan, to discuss Japan’s security and political engagement in Southeast Asia, with a particular focus on the Philippines. Japan is a long-standing dialogue partner of ASEAN and has deep ties with its member states. Tokyo has emphasised ASEAN centrality as a key principle within its Free and Open Indo-Pacific strategy, and an effective engagement with the grouping is seen as an important component of how Japan seeks to achieve its objectives in the region. This episode highlights the different forms of interaction undertaken by Japan in Southeast Asia – particularly with the Philippines – and discusses the utility of non-military engagement for fostering greater cooperation. Dr Kiba also outlines the threat perceptions and security needs of the Philippines as well as the role of extra-regional actors in the Indo-Pacific.
4/14/202131 minutes, 30 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #12: A Transatlantic Dialogue on China

Originally published 31 March 2021 The United States and Europe share concerns over some of Beijing’s behaviour in the international system. But how aligned at the two sides of the Atlantic on how to manage China’s rise? Veerle is joined by Raffaello Pantucci, Senior Research Fellow at RUSI and at the RSIS in Singapore, to explore the current state of Europe-China relations. Tensions are running high following the imposition of sanctions by the EU as well as by the UK, the US and Canada over human rights violations in Xinjiang. And these are made worse by Beijing’s retaliatory measures targeting China-focussed academics, analysts, and research institutions. But the EU and the United States are not perfectly aligned on how to view Chinese behaviour, or on how to mitigate existing concerns.
3/31/202148 minutes, 15 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #11: Indonesia’s Foreign and Security Policies

Originally published 17 March 2021 Veerle is joined by Ambassador Desra Percaya, Indonesia’s current Ambassador in London, to discuss his country’s perspective on geopolitical and security questions in Southeast Asia and the Indo-Pacific. Indonesia is a regional economic heavyweight and its role in the Indo-Pacific region, the economic engine of the world, is only expected to grow. However, the country’s foreign and security policy have not received adequate attention. Ambassador Desra Percaya highlights Indonesia’s position on some of the region’s ongoing security questions. This episode seeks to highlight Jakarta’s perspective on the role of China in the region, as well as the situations in Myanmar and Xinjiang, and explores the question of whether Indonesia considers ASEAN as being effective in addressing some of these challenges. Ambassador Desra also lays out how Indonesia views the growing interest of extra-regional powers like the United Kingdom in the Indo-Pacific, and identifies some of the areas in which Indonesia would welcome cooperation and collaboration.
3/17/202137 minutes, 19 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #10: New Zealand's Indo-Pacific Recalibration

Originally published 3 March 2021 This week, Veerle is joined by Professor David Capie, Director of the Centre for Strategic Studies and Professor of International Relations at Victoria University in Wellington. Given the strong policy focus on the Indo-Pacific by Australia, it may be surprising that New Zealand’s strategic thinking is still in flux. This week, David explains what the push and pull factors have been for New Zealand in looking afresh at what the Indo-Pacific means to the country and how it can balance interests in the wider region with its immediate policy priorities in the Pacific and Southeast Asia. While New Zealand’s traditional focus in the Asia-Pacific has been on trade and economic relations, it is increasingly starting to think more critically about potential geopolitical and security challenges. For a country limited in resources and geographically a long way from fellow Indo-Pacific countries, creative partnerships will be the way forward to take advantage of the opportunities in the region and address the challenges that lie ahead.
3/3/202139 minutes, 52 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #9: Turning to the Indo-Pacific: Canada Examines a Future Role

17 February 2021 This week, Veerle is joined by Jonathan Berkshire Miller, Director and Senior Fellow of the Indo-Pacific Programme at the MacDonald Laurier Institute in Ottawa. The Canadian government is re-examining the country’s role in the Indo-Pacific. Multilateralism, strong support for the international rules-based order and a greater focus on trade through multilateral frameworks such as the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership seem certain to figure in this examination. However, what will shape Canada’s broader security role in the region? And how will Ottawa’s currently strained relationship with Beijing evolve?
2/17/202140 minutes, 22 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #8: South Korea’s Indo-Pacific Synergy

Originally published 3 February 2021 This week, Veerle is joined by Professor Heung-Kyu Kim, founder and Director of the US-China Policy Institute and professor in the Department of Political Science and Diplomacy at Ajou University, South Korea. Veerle and Professor Kim explore why South Korea – a country that has not released an Indo-Pacific strategy – has been reluctant to adopt the concept. Professor Kim offers an insight into South Korea’s strategy of balancing between China, North Korea, Russia, and the United States. Notwithstanding this, there has been a gradual acceptance of the concept and strategies put forward by other countries, and further synergies between the Moon Jae-In government’s so-called New Southern Policy may be forged with the Biden Administration. Professor Kim also highlights South Korea’s view on the potential formation of new ‘alliances of democracies’ and reflects on South Korea’s invitation to join this year’s G7 Summit, to be hosted by the United Kingdom.
2/3/202130 minutes, 57 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #7: Trump, Biden, and the Indo-Pacific

Originally published 20 January 2021 After the inauguration of President-elect Biden, this episode both takes a retrospective look at what worked and what didn’t in the Trump Administration’s approach to the Indo-Pacific, and examines what lies ahead for US foreign policy in the region. This week, Veerle is joined by Blake Herzinger, non-resident Fellow at the Pacific Forum in Honolulu, who is an US Navy reserve officer currently based in Singapore, following 10 years of active service. Veerle and Blake embark on a tour d’horizon of the Trump Administration’s Indo-Pacific strategy, unpacking the recently declassified US Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific drafted in 2018 and assessing what worked and what did not in the outgoing adminstration’s approach. The discussion then explores enduring possible continuities in the Biden Administration, and changes in future US policies toward the Indo-Pacific. From reinforcing partnerships within and outside of the region – including with the UK – to the need for a more broad-based approach to security, the new administration will need to take advantage of goals which are more readily achievable, while more deftly handling enduring regional challenges.
1/20/202155 minutes, 55 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #6: Europe Turns to the Indo-Pacific

Originally published 16 December 2020 Germany, France, and The Netherlands have published Indo-Pacific Strategies. The United Kingdom speaks of a strategic tilt to the region. But what does all this mean in practice? This week, Veerle is joined by Dr. Garima Mohan and Dr. Frederic Grare to explore the growing momentum in Europe of individual states releasing strategies and foreign policy guidelines on the Indo-Pacific region. In particular focus are Germany and France, whose strategies while broadly aligned also offer some divergences. Our guests explore how these policies might be implemented in the future and what role the European Union may play given the calls by Paris, Berlin and others for the EU to release an Indo-Pacific Strategy of its own. They also discuss the need for coordination amongst European nations in the region and their key partners, the comparative advantages offered by the EU, and the implications of a Biden administration on European policy towards the Indo-Pacific. While the UK’s Indo-Pacific tilt still requires further fleshing out, our guests highlight potential areas of complementarity and cooperation between the UK and key European actors in the region.
12/16/202049 minutes, 47 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #5: Australia’s Indo-Pacific Approach: Principles and Partnerships

Originally published 2 December 2020 This week, Veerle is joined by Professor Rory Medcalf, Head of the National Security College at the Australian National University and internationally-recognised thought leader for his work on the Indo-Pacific concept of the Asian strategic environment, as articulated in his 2020 book Contest for the Indo-Pacific (released internationally as Indo-Pacific Empire). This week, our guests share insights from ASEAN and specific Southeast Asian member states, such as Vietnam and Indonesia, and their assessment of the Indo-Pacific concept. ASEAN has signalled its desire to maintain centrality in the Indo-Pacific through the publication of a position paper. However, challenges lie ahead for the organisation and its member states to achieve this, with changing geopolitical dynamics across the Indo-Pacific region and growing discussions over whether new solutions are needed for existing challenges. The US election result is likewise likely to have an impact on US-ASEAN relations, following rising Sino-US tensions that have played out in Southeast Asia. Finally, Dr. Laksmana and Dr. Le Thu discuss how ASEAN and some of its member states look towards the UK as a potential partner in Southeast Asia, and the wider Indo-Pacific, given the UK government has placed a great deal of emphasis on deepening engagement with ASEAN, but also flagged an upcoming ‘Indo-Pacific tilt’.
12/2/202051 minutes, 12 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #4: ASEAN’s Outlook: Maintaining Centrality in the Indo-Pacific

Originally published on 18 November 2020 This week, Veerle is joined by Dr. Evan Laksmana, senior researcher at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Jakarta, Indonesia, and Dr. Huong Le Thu, senior analyst at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute’s (ASPI) Defence and Strategy Program. This week, our guests share insights from ASEAN and specific Southeast Asian member states, such as Vietnam and Indonesia, and their assessment of the Indo-Pacific concept. ASEAN has signalled its desire to maintain centrality in the Indo-Pacific through the publication of a position paper. However, challenges lie ahead for the organisation and its member states to achieve this, with changing geopolitical dynamics across the Indo-Pacific region and growing discussions over whether new solutions are needed for existing challenges. The US election result is likewise likely to have an impact on US-ASEAN relations, following rising Sino-US tensions that have played out in Southeast Asia. Finally, Dr. Laksmana and Dr. Le Thu discuss how ASEAN and some of its member states look towards the UK as a potential partner in Southeast Asia, and the wider Indo-Pacific, given the UK government has placed a great deal of emphasis on deepening engagement with ASEAN, but also flagged an upcoming ‘Indo-Pacific tilt’.
11/18/202059 minutes, 10 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #3: India’s Indo-Pacific Vision: Stabilising the Indian Ocean Region

Originally published 4 November 2020 This week, Veerle is joined by Darshana Baruah, Visiting Fellow at the Sasakawa Peace Foundation in Tokyo and non-resident scholar with the South Asia Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and Dhruva Jaishankar, Director of the US Initiative at the Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi and Non-resident Fellow at the Lowy Institute in Sydney. The idea of the Indo-Pacific as a theatre for influence and power is gaining prominence among governments and expert communities across the world.   A number of regional and global powers with interests in the region, as well as groupings like ASEAN, have presented their own unique interpretations of the Indo-Pacific as a strategic concept that connects the Indian and Pacific Oceans along with their littoral states as an integrated arena for competition and collaboration. 
11/4/202049 minutes, 49 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #2: Japan’s Indo-Pacific Vision: What's Next After Abe?

Originally published 21 October 2020. Veerle and Ryosuke Hanada, Indo-Pacific Fellow at the Perth USAsia Centre, explore the origins of Japan’s Indo-Pacific policy, unpack its trajectory over the last few years, and look ahead at whether and how it might evolve in a post-Abe government. They also discuss Japan’s priority sub-regions and policy areas in the Indo-Pacific, which helps pinpoint areas for collaboration and cooperation with partners in Europe, including the United Kingdom. Opportunities clearly lie ahead for UK-Japan engagement in the region. The idea of the Indo-Pacific as a theatre for influence and power is gaining prominence among governments and expert communities across the world.   A number of regional and global powers with interests in the region, as well as groupings like ASEAN, have presented their own unique interpretations of the Indo-Pacific as a strategic concept that connects the Indian and Pacific Oceans along with their littoral states as an integrated arena for competition and collaboration. 
10/21/202036 minutes, 35 seconds
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Bridging the Oceans #1: Conceptualising the Indo-Pacific

Originally released 21 October 2020 In this first episode of Bridging the Oceans, Veerle is joined by Dr. Neil Melvin, Director of RUSI’s International Security Studies department and Aaditya Dave, Research Analyst in the Navigating the Indo-Pacific Programme of the ISS department. Together, they explore the Indo-Pacific concept and region, why the concept of the Indo-Pacific is catching on, what some of the key defence and security questions in the region will be, and what this means for UK foreign and security policy as it undergoes its Integrated Review process. The idea of the Indo-Pacific as a theatre for influence and power is gaining prominence among governments and expert communities across the world.   A number of regional and global powers with interests in the region, as well as groupings like ASEAN, have presented their own unique interpretations of the Indo-Pacific as a strategic concept that connects the Indian and Pacific Oceans along with their littoral states as an integrated arena for competition and collaboration.  Running from 2020 to 2023, Bridging the Oceans aimed to create a platform to discuss the key defence and security questions of the world’s most dynamic region: the Indo-Pacific. Hosted by Veerle Nouwens, it explored what the Indo-Pacific is, where its limits lie, and what the fast-evolving defence and security issues are in this dynamic part of the world.
10/21/202036 minutes, 7 seconds
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Podcast Trailer: Bridging the Oceans

Originally published 28 September 2020. Running from 2020 to 2023, Bridging the Oceans aimed to create a platform to discuss the key defence and security questions of the world’s most dynamic region: the Indo-Pacific. Hosted by Veerle Nouwens, it explored what the Indo-Pacific is, where its limits lie, and what the fast-evolving defence and security issues are in this dynamic part of the world.
9/28/20202 minutes, 35 seconds