Chinese navalists have been mixing some Sir Julian Corbett into their Mahanian cocktails lately. That is wise on their part, and something that bears American scrutiny.
Some years ago, as China cast about for sea-power theories to guide its naval rise, its attention alighted on the works of Captain Alfred Thayer Mahan, the second president of the U.S. Naval War College and the author of influential works such as The Influence of Sea Power upon History, 1660-1783 and The Problem of Asia . Mahan exhorted nations to amass international commerce, forward bases, and merchant and naval fleets in order to gain commercial, political, and military access to key theaters like East Asia.