As former Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Stanley Roth has observed, though overlooked by some and undervalued by others, multilateral cooperation has become an important and likely permanent feature of Asia's security landscape. In the decade following the end of the Cold War, the scope of activities involved in the emerging network of multilateral initiatives has widened dramatically, reflecting the general consensus in the region of the need for cooperative frameworks that go beyond traditional bilateral relations in addressing certain security concerns. Such a growing pattern of what may be termed "security pluralism" is meant for regional institutions and organizations to complement each other in developing an informal security framework for promoting understanding and mutual confidence. In the midst of strategic uncertainty and mistrust caused by the growing rivalry between the US and China, compounded by the prospects of prolonged instability on the Korean peninsula, multilateral security cooperation has a chance to perform a number of extremely useful functions. This paper attempts to analyze what those functions are, while also evaluating various approaches to regional security. In this process, several arguments will be put forward to demonstrate the belief that a combination of endorsing multi-layered security networks while strengthening bilateral alliances provides the best formula for increasing regional security and stability in Northeast Asia.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Sociology and Political Science
- Safety Research
- Political Science and International Relations