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U.S. Maritime Strategy and Failed States

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  1. U.S. Maritime Strategy and Failed States Virginia Foran-Cain Center for Strategic Studies April 21, 2009

  2. Roadmap • Focus on the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) • Maritime consequences of failed and failing states • U.S. strategy towards failed states • Towards a maritime strategy for failed states • Implementation and coordination • Next Steps

  3. Bottom Line • No specific document “A U.S. Maritime Strategy Toward Failed and Failing States” • But a reasonably comprehensive, de-facto strategy nonetheless. • Initiatives are nicely layered, but coordination a huge problem • Could serve to improve MDA technically and politically • Sea Services approach compatible with multilateral diplomacy • Conceptualizing Maritime Strategy for this problem could serve to focus efforts currently de-centralized • Application to IOR useful as there is a lot at stake there and would push strategy in practical, applied direction.

  4. The Indian Ocean Region: A Maritime Domain

  5. Increasing Geostrategic Importance • Value of a free waterway for commerce and maritime projection of power long recognized • IOR now a global economic lifeline for energy and trade • IOR key area of interest for the worlds two fastest growing economies: China and India • Potential for U.S., China, India strategic triangle if not managed carefully Vasco de Gama Jamnagar oil refinery in Gujarat, India is expanding to become the largest in the world

  6. IOR Energy and Trade • Principal trade route between east and west • Over half the world’s merchant fleets pass through the IO to and from South and East Asia • 80%+ of oil destined for Asia transits the IO, most of it through the Malacca Strait • 17-18% of U.S. net oil imports come from the Persian Gulf • Nearly all goes south or west out of Gulf by sea U.S. has less at stake with regard to energy and trade in the IOR than any other major power, but providing security contributes to national security objectives.

  7. Increasing Threats • IOR and littoral states are home to several significant threats to international security • Maritime terrorism and piracy • Arms trafficking and WMD proliferation • Natural disasters • Failing states Dec. 10 2002, Spanish navy intercept boards North Korean ship So San en route to Yemen carrying Scud missile parts hidden under bags of cement US flagged Maersk Alabama hijacked off coast of Somalia ALL HAVE MARITIME CONSEQUENCES

  8. Incidents of piracy have declined in Southeast Asia since 2003, and have risen off coast of Africa.

  9. Consequences of Failed and Failing States • Loss of control over territory • Piracy • Trafficking (weapons, drugs, human) • Civil war • Potential to create instability in adjacent states • Migration of refugees • Difficult to manage and provide assistance • Terrorist safe havens • Recruiting and training extremists

  10. Failed and Failing States in the IOR • According to Foreign Policy ranking, 8 of top 20 states judged most at risk are in IOR • Somalia (1) • Iraq (5) • Afghanistan (7) • Pakistan (9) • Bangladesh (12) • Burma/Myanmar (13) • Ethiopia (16) • Sri Lanka (20) • Regions with numerous failed/failing states at risk to become failed regions “Insecurity in the 21st century appears to come less from the collisions of powerful states than from the debris of imploding ones.” (Breaking the Failed-State Cycle, RAND 2008)

  11. Gaps and Criticism of Current Initiatives Existing institutions not capable of integration needed Mitigating the Consequences Strengthening and Prevention Insufficient resources Fragmented efforts No durable recovery resulting in a cycle of failure Food aid Education programs FDI Peacekeeping Development assistance Governance Counter narcotics/arms trafficking Anti-piracy efforts Humanitarian relief Security assistance The military dominates the decision-making and resources

  12. Strategic Guidance for Weak and Failed States 2005 National Security Presidential Directive 44 Support Transformational Diplomacy Civilian-Military Coordination Harness Skills and Expertise throughout USG Build Global Capacity Make Progress towards Presidential Goals “…incidents of maritime crime tend to be concentrated in areas of heavy commercial maritime activity especially where there is significant political and economic instability, or in regions with little or no maritime law enforcement capacity.” 1998, 2002, and 2006 NSS recognized severe threats emanating from states described as weak, fragile, vulnerable, failing, precarious, in crisis, or collapsed “…the U.S. should work…to anticipate state failure, avoid it wherever possible, and respond quickly and effectively when necessaryand appropriate.”

  13. Current Guidance for U.S. Maritime Strategy • Limit regional conflict with forward deployed, decisive maritime power. • Deter major power war. • Win our nation’s wars. • Contribute to homeland defense in depth. • Foster and sustain cooperative relationships with more international partners. • Prevent or contain local disruptions before they impact the global system “Trust and cooperation cannot be surged”

  14. Current U.S. Maritime Initiatives • The Global Maritime Partnership • CTF-150 (CENTCOM) • Maritime Security Operations • Assured security through Strait of Hormuz and others as needed • Theater Security Cooperation with regional Navies • Maritime Domain Awareness • Enhancing communication technology • MDA akin to International Civil Aviation Organization or US NOAA • Anti Piracy Efforts • CTF-151 • Sea Marshalls • Training of merchant mariners • Container Security Initiative • Proliferation Security Initiative GLOBAL MARITIME PARTNERSHIPS

  15. Implementation Issues • Forward Presence • Dependent on relationship with host government • Empower existing maritime partnerships • Evaluate where additional partnerships are needed • Maritime Operations • Gaps in SLOC security • Coordination with regional maritime security initiatives • MDA technology still evolving • Anticipating Piracy and Trafficking countermeasures • Littoral platforms • Coordination within USG • Possible rush to hand off to DOS • Trans regional Influence Plan (TRIP) MARITIME SECURITY: Cheaper than boots on the ground

  16. Next Steps: Strengthening U.S. Maritime Strategy Base Next Steps on the Hard Cases in IOR • Piracy/Trafficking • Somalia • Civil war/Insurgencies • Somalia, Burma, Pakistan, Iraq, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka • Haven for terrorists • Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq • Migration of refugees • Burma, Somalia Prosecute the bloody pirates! SLOC CONVOYS! Homeland Security and MDA Don’t shortchange HA/DR