Editor's Page

China is also expanding its abilities in the cyber realm. Shannon Knight provides a review of Chinese writings on cyber warfare that reveals thoughtful discussions of foreign cyber programs, especially those of the United States. Although Chinese cyber-security experts acknowledge that the United States currently holds an advantage in this area, they predict a future shift in power and “view cyberspace as a domain holding promise for a progressive transfer of power from hegemons to emerging nations.” For the United States to maintain its edge in this field, the author calls for continued research and funding, the safeguarding of cyber technologies, and a fresh understanding of Chinese cyberspace views.

The increasing friction in the contested waters of the Pacific makes it even more imperative to try to work with China. With the U.S. Navy and the PLAN operating near each other in the region, these services face an increased likelihood of at-sea encounters, explains Captain Dale Rielage. Therefore, it’s vital to build political and operational trust. Progress was achieved on this front with the PLAN’s participation in RIMPAC 2014, which followed a year of unprecedented engagement between the U.S. and Chinese navies. “Engaging the PLAN is a worthy effort,” the author explains. “The reality is that we will encounter the PLAN across the globe. Clear discussion as to what is and is not achievable in our interactions is essential to ensure our planning and the advice we provide political leadership is realistic.”

Another avenue for engagement is in response to humankind’s common foe—natural disasters. As Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Captain Takuya Shimodaira reminds us, therein lies the foundation for a cooperative approach in the South China Sea. In the wake of devastation, arguments over who controls this or that piece of oceanic real estate fade in importance as the exigencies of humanitarian aid and disaster relief (HA/DR) come to the fore. With its firmly ingrained experience in dealing with calamitous natural events, Japan is optimally positioned to take the lead in such cooperative HA/DR training and execution—a program that must include China in the fraternity of nations allied against the elements.

Paul Merzlak , Editor-in-Chief



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