High End Competition in the Pacific

Orlando, February 18, 2010—The nature of “allies” and “adversaries” is very nebulous in the Pacific region, Gen. Gary North said at AFA’s Air Warfare Symposium. For one thing, said North, Pacific Air Forces boss, “Our high end competition is very good and it’s getting better” in the region noted for including five of the world’s largest militaries—China, Russia, North Korea, India, and South Korea. North believes the promotion of open military exchanges is critical in the region to promote stability and prevent miscalculations that could lead to open conflict. Among his upcoming plans to pursue such exchanges is a visit later this month to former adversary Vietnam. Not on his agenda, though, is a visit to China, which has now largely re-closed the door—a development that North called “unfortunate”—it had opened to US military officials in reaction to recent US arms sale to Taiwan.