Southeast Asia

Managing the Rise of Southeast Asia's Coast Guards

Over the past few years, Southeast Asian states have begun either significantly increasing their investments in coast guards and other maritime law enforcement agencies (MLEAs) or have considered standing up new agencies. As this has occurred, there has been a rising conversation about the significance not only for these countries themselves, but for wider regional stability and for external partners such as the United States.

Are Sulu Sea Trilateral Patrols Actually Working?

One of the minilateral security initiatives emerging out of Southeast Asia over the past few years has been the new trilateral cooperation mechanism for managing a range of transnational challenges in the Sulu Sea between Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines. With the mechanism expected to continue to take shape into 2019 as well, it is worth asking where it stands as well as the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead for it.

What To Look For in 2019: The Year Ahead in Asia

America In Search of an Asia Strategy

Bangladesh’s 2018 National Election: What To Expect

On December 30, Bangladeshis go to the polls for an election that some observers have described as its most important in years. Michael Kugelman, deputy director of the Asia Program and senior South Asia associate at the Wilson Center, and William Milam, a Wilson Center senior scholar and former U.S. ambassador to Bangladesh, sit down with Bangladeshi journalist Mushfiqul Fazal to discusses what’s at stake for Bangladesh and what the implications are for U.S. policy and interests.

The Chinese Communist Party’s Relationship with the Khmer Rouge in the 1970s: An Ideological Victory and a Strategic Failure

To download this Working Paper, please click here.

CWIHP Working Paper 88

The Chinese Communist Party’s Relationship with the Khmer Rouge in the 1970s: An Ideological Victory and a Strategic Failure


Wang Chenyi

December 2018


China's Soft Power

The dramatic rise of China as a global power with immense geopolitical ambitions has been a largely economic and military story.  Until recently, the one component largely missing from China’s arsenal has been “soft power”–instruments of persuasion and cultural/intellectual influence.  That is no longer the case, but soft power as currently employed by Beijing has a distinctly hard edge.

ASEAN and the U.S. Indo-Pacific Strategy

Pending any last-minute changes, U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence is set to attend the next round of Asian summitry in Singapore in November on behalf of U.S. President Donald Trump. While the agenda for Pence’s trip will no doubt be wide-ranging, his visit to the region will spotlight the Trump administration’s Free and Open Indo-Pacific (FOIP) strategy and the role of Southeast Asia and ASEAN as a regional grouping within it.

ASEAN's Role in a U.S. Indo-Pacific Strategy

Over the past few months, top U.S. officials, including Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, have begun fleshing out a vision for Indo-Pacific region, which U.S. President Donald Trump first publicly unveiled in a speech at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit in Vietnam back in December 2017.

The Future of the Quad is in Southeast Asia

Much has already been made of the so-called “Quad” mechanism linking Japan, India, Australia, and the United States, which was announced during President Trump’s November 2017 trip to Asia.