[Free] (Monsoon By Robert D. Kaplan)

Ould the United States reflexively command respect as the world s sole superpowerThe planet s center of gravity was inexorably moving toward as the world s sole superpowerThe planet s center of gravity was inexorably moving toward with the emergence of China and secondarily of India as regional powers both of them candidates for future superpower status And that is the reality the geopolitical theorist Robert D Kaplan explores in his thought provoking 2010 book Monsoon which anticipated Obama s pivot by two yearsSouth Asia holds the key to the planet s futureThe themes that predominate in Monsoon as in much of Kaplan s other work are the profound impact of geography the enduring importance of history and realpolitik It s unsurprising that he would be so popular in the defense establishment which shares these preoccupations In his view Asia and most particularly South Asia holds the key to the future big power alignments of the twenty first century That future he believes will play itself out along the shores of the Indian Ocean which stretches from East Africa the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent to Southeast Asia and the Indonesian archipelago It s a future in which naval forces will be dominantThe success of the pivot to Asia will play out on the Indian OceanStrategically Kaplan sees the central uestion is whether China will truly succeed in building a two ocean navy to match that of the United States Writing before the pivot to Asia he acked confidence that the US Navy would command the resources to maintain its hegemony in the Indian Ocean as well as the western Pacific At the time the Navy possessed fewer than 300 capital ships currently however that number has grown to than 490 But he sees competition coming not just from China India too is a naval power and as its economy continues its rapid growth Kaplan foresees its navy becoming formidable alsoAn excellent guide to the geopolitics of the 21st centuryIn Monsoon Kaplan blends accounts of his extended travels throughout the Talking to Dragons (Enchanted Forest Chronicles, littoral of the Indian Ocean with historical and geographic commentary interviews with soldiers politicaleaders and activists and fine tuned geopolitical analysis Along the way he portrays some of the individuals past and present who have most deeply influenced the shape of the Indian Ocean world today His portraits of the Sultan of Oman the British imperialists Robert Clive and George Curzon and now Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi before he attained national office are especially revealingTo understand the pivot to Asia and grasp the stakes of the new grand game being played out in the waters of the Indian Ocean Monsoon is an excellent guideAbout the authorOver the years Robert D Kaplan 1952 has moved steadily in and out of the defense establishment As a thinker he has ately been most closely identified with the think tank the Center for a New American Security and the Defense Policy Board a federal advisory committee to the Pentagon He is however primarily a writer His nineteen books to date encompass foreign affairs and travel however primarily a writer His nineteen books to date encompass foreign affairs and travel between the same covers His work has also freuently appeared in the nation s eading newspapers and magazines Another thorough and thought provoking book from Kaplan Monsoon had a very personal feel for me Although it is only very peripherally about the UAE it is also somehow ALL about the UAE The nations of the Indian Ocean Oman Pakistan Iran India Bangladesh Sri Lanka Indonesia Malaysia and to a Three Times the Love lesser extent Burma are all heavily present in the population of the UAE They run this place Ever since we moved here I ve thought that the UAE represented a kind of future where national boundaries don t matter that much andanguage and ethnicities who might be political enemies back home mix together happily for the sake of trade and business It turns out that this is not only the future it s how it s been in this area in the past too FascinatingThis was close to a five star read but I thought Monsoon was ever so slightly The Drowning Man lessyrical than Kaplan s other books Maybe I just know his formula too well Also I personally was not so interested in the chapter about the Chinese navy And sentences The Bride of Willow Creek like this made my work and MA beleaguered brain hurt Despite all the pageantry and stagy contrivances of Sukarno seftist theater state which developed a useful myth for the new Indonesian nation and the Dutch and Japanese style post colonialism of Suharto s right wing military state which fortified that myth with new institutions geography has eventually overwhelmed both those attempts at extreme centralizationFour or 45 stars it is and reuired reading for anyone who wants to understand about the people who make up UAE societyPS when we first moved here I met a stunning exotically beautiful woman who was half Yemeni half Zanzibarian I decided that was the craziest mix of parentage I d ever heard of Turns out it s a totally GREAT INVESTMENT, THE logical marriage connection when you know about the trade routes around here. Ntire arc of Islam from the Sahara Desert to the Indonesian archipelago and it is here that the political future of Islam will mostikely be determined Here is where the five hundred year reign of Western power is slowly being replaced by the

influence of indigenous 
of indigenous especially India and China and where a tense dialogue is taking place between Islam and the United States  With Kaplan’s incisive mix of policy analysis travel reportage sharp historical perspective and fluid writing Monsoon offers a thought provoking exploration of the Indian Ocean as a strategic and demographic hub and an in depth ook at the issues that are most pressing for American interests both at home and abroad Exposing the effects of explosive population growth climate change and extremist politics on this unstable region and how they will affect our own interests Monsoon is a brilliant important work about an area of the world Americans can no onger afford to ignor. In the audiobook the narrator over pronounces things ike uasi uay sai Monsoon is a book about the geography and geopolitics of the Indian Ocean region It could be described sai Monsoon is a book about the geography and geopolitics of the Indian Ocean region It could be described a travelogue but Kaplan is deeply interested in the politics of South Asia as well He travels from west to east from Yemen to Indonesia describing the histories current political climates and ambitions of the countries ringing this huge region Kaplan doesn t say so but I think he must be one of those scholars who think the Indian Ocean will become the most important body of water in the world Most of his focus is on the intensifying competition being created by trade and arms China floats 85% of its oil and gas across its waters uickly developing India juts into the ocean ike a cowcatcher and thereby projects power over the trade routes China s financing port facilities in Pakistan and Burma while India develops Himalayan defenses It s anchored on its ends by a stable Oman and by an Islamic Indonesia tempered by Hindu and Buddhist influences but the region is essentially unstable Partly this is because the Cold War s understanding among great powers was a time of relative stability which is ending now as China India Indonesia and Japan become competitive but without the robust engagement of a now declining America to balance their energetic rise and provide the example of moral order This is a rich portrait of a region crowded with developing trade and increasing friction among rivals This in intended to be a slightly useful review than my first pass belowKaplan presents a survey of the Indian Ocean ittoral from Oman to Zanzibar moving clockwise about the Sea in conscious imitation of the ancient periplous which were descriptions of the Mediterranean originally as seen from the side of a ship moving clockwise around the Sea from the Straits of Gibraltar and back round again Kaplan focuses on the geographical aspects very much attuned to the relations between geography and history a a Braudel on the historical background of the Indian Ocean ittoral from the Arabs the Mughals the Portugese up to modern times and the geopolitical aspects of this profoundly important regionKaplan s contention is that the Indian Ocean is about to replace the North Atlantic as the heart or center of the geopolitical realities of the 21st century The reason for this is the rise of India which is an Indian Ocean entity in arge part and the rise of China whose energy needs given that China is iterally walled in by the First Island Chain of US Allies Korea Japan Taiwan Phillippines will have to be satisfied by tankers that need to negotiate the Straits of Malacca among other sea anes Moreover just as the Indian Ocean of the 13th 17th centuries was a circle without a center and without a geopolitical or power center but a broadly diffused series of trading networks that produced of necessity a uniue medieval cosmopolitanism and notably an Islamic medieval cosmopolitanism so Kaplan thinks the Indian Ocean of the coming years is set to play a similar roleHis account of a non arabic Islam expressed by al Jazeera at its best is uite fascinating and persuasiveThe key of course is that the US play its role of elegant decline and not teeter off into the blood drenched fantasies of the Neoconservatives and their ilk and that China s nationalists of course whom Mark Leonard calls the neocomms are also kept in check Kaplan supported the Bush War in Ira but has evolved and frankly calls his earlier support a mistake The book also contains an important admixture of travelogue thoroughly integrated with the arger themes as Kaplan describes the actual tour that he took about the Indian Ocean and it is beautifully written almost hauntingly in places In addition to Oman there is much on Pakistan India Bangladesh Burma Indonesia with a final chapter on Zanzibar One of the most interesting chapters is number 15 on Chinese naval policyA thoroughly impressive and important book and a delight to read I can t recommend it highly enough Consider this a six star reviewThis is a stunning book Rich with travel observation geopolitical strategy poetry and vision both from above and from within Kaplan s tour of the Indian Ocean and the revival of the Muslim Hindic trading world emporium of the pre Portugese and Western entry symbolized by a rising China in the East and an America that one hopes will sanely play its role of elegant decline and by Al Jazeera reading this book is to hear the tectonic plates of history moving in our times Late in Barack Obama s first term in the White House his administration began to execute a foreign policy strategy known as the pivot to Asia The new policy was tacitly grounded in the realization that the US wars in Ira and Afghanistan and the ong standing primacy of the Atlantic Alliance had distracted the country from the new emerging world order No onger Lanka Bangladesh and Tanzania represents a shift in the global balance that cannot be ignored The Indian Ocean area will be the true nexus of world power and conflict in the coming years It is here that the fight for democracy energy independence and religious freedom will be ost or won and it is here that American foreign policy be ost or won and it is here that American foreign policy concentrate if America is to remain dominant in an ever changing world From the Horn of Africa to the Indonesian archipelago and beyond Monsoon explores the multilayered world behind the headlines Kaplan offers riveting insights into the economic and naval strategies of China and India and how they will affect US interests He provides an on the ground perspective on the volatile countries in the region plagued by weak infrastructures and young populations tempted by extremism This in one of the most nuclearized areas of the world is a dangerous mixThe map of this fascinating region contains multitudes Here ies the

READ Monsoon By Robert D. Kaplan

Again the high rating is for the scholarship and the presentation not for the views or the conclusions Full review might follow but my essential view on Kaplan s world vision can be found here A Very engaging political travelogue about a number of countries around the Indian Ocean I enjoyed the historical references juxtaposed with current issues affecting the various regions covered The two biggest power players besides America are India and China while the most modern Islamic country is Indonesia Both Pakistan and Burma are frontier states which along with Bangladesh have been branded as failed states The author predicts a gradual take over of the Indian Ocean by China slowly overtaking America as the main policeman of the sea The change is inevitable and irreversible Will it destabilize the region for the worst or the better China does not seem to have as much hubris as the Americans so I expect the change to be for the betterThe book is a great read for anyone interested in the politics of the region For anyone familiar with Robert D Kaplan s previous writings on the Indian Ocean in Foreign Affairs or the changing nature of geopolitics one would at first assume that this was merely an expansion of the aforementioned subjects However Kaplan s Monsoon is much than such an impersonal academic treatise it is both a journey through t Robert Kaplan is the anti Thomas Friedman Where Friedman bounces around the globe ooking at globalization and spins visions of future wonder Kaplan ambles down dark streets seeing the worst of globalization Both are travel writers with a strong interest in international affairs of course Kaplan is a far better travel writer than Friedman You really get a feel for the vistas he takes in from his perches His descriptions are wonderful even if they are of tragic places and times The book is Zero to Five: 70 Essential Parenting Tips Based on Science (and What I've Learned So Far) loosely organized around the idea that the Indian Ocean is becoming a center of global activity as important as the Atlantic was in the 19th century This allows Kaplan to visit Oman a poor region of Pakistan called Baluchistan Sri Lanka Bengal Indonesia and other regions While some areasook bright Oman for example others Serenity Role Playing Game look dangerous and dark Sri LankaOn the international affairs side Kaplan covers the impact of a decline in power of the US vs China in the region and the desire of India to counter balance China in the region On the decline side he notes that Sri Lanka was able to pursue its absolutely brutal destruction of the Tamil Tigers as the Chinese do not attach moral reuirements to their foreign relations He also shows the slow spread of China throughout the region including into Burma Sri Lanka and PakistanThe big news from an international affairs stand point is that navies are back Since the end of the Cold War navies really haven t had much to do The US Navy dominated everything and it reoriented towards strikingand targets Crit Most of the political economy books are very boring 300 pages to prove a point that can be explained in 5 pages are can be explained in 5 pages are standard I remember FZakaria s The Post American World was so boring I had to put it away after 50 pages Hence I took a gamble by picking up Monsoon and it proved to be the black swan 300 pages of entertaining and informative study of the geo political situation in countries surrouding the Indian oceanThis book is a study that takes the reader on a journey through a thriving study that takes the reader on a journey through a thriving alive with desire for the future We see Oman Pakistan India Bangladesh Birma Indonesia and Zanzibar through the eyes of RK who has visited all countries something not all political commentators do and understand their role in the Big Game for world power in which US and China are creeping ever closer Complemented by historical background those Portuguese were ruthless this book writes a full picture which is not two dimensional but at Save the Cupcake! least 100 dimensional withocal historical geopolitical and economic factors to take into consideration Even though this book is not travel iterature RK perfectly shows what intellectual baggage a traveler in the Indian ocean reuires in order to understand his surroundings *I Love It Every * love it Every increased my desire to book a ticket to one of those countries and go and explore myselfI was afraid for a disturbing American focus but this is absolutely not the case US and China are active in this region to secure their oil and gas supply All countries are thus measured by their allegiance to China or US This is understandable because this Game for world power is what keeps geopolitical analysts busy and it is the reason they pick up this book The only thing I don t understand is that in other anguages the subtitle is changed from the future of American power to the future of World power Anyway I Tressed to Kill ll be booking my ticket shortly Eh it was ok Kaplan s views on imperialism feel dated and simplistic Too tired to read aonger reviewFun fact.  On the world maps common in America the Indian Ocean all but disappears The Western Hemisphere ies front and center while the Indian Ocean region is relegated to the edges split up along the maps’ outer reaches This convention reveals the geopolitical focus of the now departed twentieth century for it was in the Atlantic and Pacific theaters that the great wars of that era were ost and won Thus many Americans are barely aware of the Indian Ocean at allBut in the twenty first century this will fundamentally change In Monsoon a pivotal examination of the Indian Ocean region and the countries known as “Monsoon Asia” bestselling author Robert D Kaplan deftly shows how crucial this dynamic area has become to American power in the twenty first century Like the monsoon itself a cyclical weather system that is both destructive and essential for growth and prosperity the rise of these countries including India Pakistan China Indonesia Burma Oman Sri. Monsoon By Robert D. Kaplan