East Asia has steadily become a region ripe for large-scale conflict not seen since World War Two. Various nations, such as South Korea, Taiwan, Japan, the Philippines, and Vietnam, could all be in open war soon against different geopolitical rivals such as South Korea and China, respectively.

Preparedness for war has begun in these countries, with much of East Asia solidifying defense pacts with the United States. Nevertheless, challenges have arisen in place of military preparation, such as the changing demographics in the region.

Brewing Conflicts

Several ongoing conflicts in East Asia have the possibility of brewing into armed conflicts in the future. Under Xi Jinping, China looks poised to forcibly unify their nation with Taiwan, which could become a regional and  unthinkable world war if the situation spirals out of control.

On the Korean Peninsula, tensions have arisen as North Korea continues its unilateral and internationally condemned ballistic missile tests. Ramping up threats towards South Korea and reportedly signing up hundreds of thousands of recruits, the situation in the peninsula remains precarious.

The United States solidified its mutual defense pact with South Korea, including an even more significant nuclear presence if the North used one first. Seoul has also grown its relations with Tokyo as both nations see Pyongyang as a  security threat.

In the South China Sea, the People’s Republic of China has aggressively flexed its muscles against countries such as Vietnam and The Philippines. Vietnam has had prior conflicts with China, which has crept into its own Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), and the Philippines solidified a deal for America to bolster its expeditionary force in Southeast Asia.

Likewise, Japan and Australia see a rising military threat from China, and both nations have made strides towards remilitarization. Australia signed the highly coveted military pact of AUKUS.