How Domestic Trends in the U.S., China, and Iran Could Influence U.S. Navy Strategic Planning

By John Gordon IV; Robert W. Button et al. | Go to book overview

CHAPTER THREE
The United States’ Near Abroad

The United States has been fortunate in that for over a century it has not had to devote considerable military resources to conflicts within the Western Hemisphere. Not since the Spanish-American War of 1898 has the United States made a considerable military effort close to its homeland. The periodic interventions in Central America and the Caribbean from early in the 20th century to the 1994 occupation of Haiti involved relatively small numbers of U.S. forces, and were conducted in the face of negligible opposition. To the north, relations with Canada have been completely nonthreatening since the 1820s. The United States has gained considerable advantage from this situation.

This chapter starts with a review of the current situation in the Western Hemisphere, particularly those nations closest to the United States. We then examine how things might change in the future, emphasizing plausible possible events that could require the U.S. to devote significantly greater resources to ensure its interests in this region.


The Current Situation

The main threats to U.S. interests in the United States’ near abroad come from illegal immigration and the inflow of drugs. Both of these challenges come overwhelmingly from south of the United States; Canada is a very minor contributor to either problem. The immigration problem has become an increasingly politicized issue, and could be a major factor in the 2008 presidential election. With an estimated 12 million illegal immigrants in the nation today, the vast majority of

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How Domestic Trends in the U.S., China, and Iran Could Influence U.S. Navy Strategic Planning
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Preface iii
  • Contents v
  • Figures ix
  • Tables xi
  • Summary xiii
  • Abbreviations xxvii
  • Chapter One - Introduction and Objectives 1
  • Chapter Two - Strategic Trends in the United States 5
  • Chapter Three - The United States’ near Abroad 29
  • Chapter Four - Strategic Trends in the People’s Republic of China 37
  • Chapter Five - China’s near Abroad 87
  • Chapter Six - Strategic Trends in Iran 97
  • Chapter Seven - Iran’s near Abroad 125
  • Chapter Eight - Japan’s near Abroad 133
  • Chapter Nine - Russia’s near Abroad 143
  • Chapter Ten - Conclusions 159
  • Appendix A - Comparisons 171
  • Appendix B - China’s Coal Future 177
  • Bibliography 191
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