For all the focus on maritime disputes in the South and East China Seas, there is an even greater peril in Asia that deserves attention: the rising salience of nuclear weapons. China’s military buildup—in particular its growing capabilities to blunt America’s ability to project effective force in the western Pacific—is threatening to change the military balance in the region. This will lead to a cascade of strategic shifts that will make nuclear weapons more central in both American and Chinese national-security plans, while increasing the danger that other regional states will seek nuclear arsenals of their own. Like it or not, nuclear weapons in Asia are back.
Read the full op-ed at Lawfare.