Vietnam’s 2019 Defense White Paper: Preparing for a Fragile Future

Vietnam’s long-awaited defense white paper was finally released late last month. One of the most important official documents on defense and military strategy, it elaborates on the overall principles and guidelines for protecting the Vietnamese homeland for the next 10 years. Given the rapidly evolving security challenges Vietnam has been faced with in the last […]

Vietnam’s Need to Become a Proactive Middle Power

Vietnam’s Need to Become a Proactive Middle Power The most frequently-asked question from U.S. scholars and experts visiting Vietnam these days is, “What does Vietnam want from the United States when it comes to the South China Sea?” Given the rapid improvement of the U.S.-Vietnam Comprehensive Partnership, especially in defense and security cooperation, this question […]

Toward a U.S.-Vietnam Strategic Maritime Partnership

Despite the complexities of the regional security environment and the sensitivities of the relationship between two former adversaries, it is fair to say that the current state of military partnership between the United States and Vietnam is at its highest point since diplomatic normalization in 1995. This strategic military rapprochement, however, has gone largely unnoticed by the Vietnamese public, as they worry more about a United States less engaged in the Asia Pacific under the Donald Trump administration.