this is the one article on the obama trip that i find has a truly strategic perspective, looking way out into the mid-century. i am often wary of kaplan's broad-brush strokes, but here he does come up with something truly different.
i have only a vague understanding of spykman's theories of geography, but the idea of the increasing importance of the rimland is related to what my friend bapa rao and i started conceptualizing as 'pax indica' about 15 years ago, and what my friend kalyan has been talking about in regards to a strong indian ocean community.
it is really sad that the indian navy is being starved of resources: just five years ago, india's naval forces were qualitatively superior to china's, but with their huge investments in submarines and other warships, they have caught up and pulled ahead. also, with their 'string of pearls'. in the long run, force projection using gunboats is something india has to do.