Arms Control in Asia by Gerald Segal (eds.)

By Gerald Segal (eds.)

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1983: Mar. 1984: April 1984: Sept. 1984: Nov. 1985: Jan. 1986: Soviet Echo class submarine caught fire of Okinawa Collision between US nuclear submarine and Japanese freighter A Soviet, Charlie I class submarine gets lost near Kamchatka Shooting down of Korean airliner with 269 people Collision between US aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk and a Soviet Victor I class attack submarine Kiev-class carrier Minsk shoots 8 flares at the US Knox-class frigate Harold E. Holt Fire-gutted Golf II class subJ11arine off Oki Island Soviet minesweeper fires three warning shots in front of Japanese fishing boat which accidentally brushed it in the Tsushima Strait Soviet Echo II class submarine (with cruise missiles) towed off Okinawa In addition, East Asian air forces have scrambled more frequently due to increased Soviet overflights or air violations.

32 It is hard to disagree with this conclusion. However, in view of the arms race between the superpowers in East Asia, the increase of incidents, and the need to contribute to a reduction of distrust, one cannot just sit back and wait for a global amelioration of Soviet-American relations which might result in an arms control agreement (which may not even concern East Asia). East Asia cannot allow itself many more years ofliving dangerously. 33 The experience and the various interests of the smaller powers in East Asia demonstrate that no initiative can be expected from them if the superpowers do not take the initiative.

Even Gorbachev's speech of 15 January itself does not mention the conference but only links the announced disarmament programme to Asia by saying that it is 'a contribution to a search, together with all Asian countries, for an overall comprehensive approach to establishing a system of secure and durable peace in this continent'. 40 In contrast to China, Japan has put forward some concrete conditions for responding positively to the Soviet proposal. Foreign Minister Abe Shintaro listed on 23 May 1985 the following: (I) The United States participates in the forum; (2) the proposal does not mean perpetuating the present occupation of four northern islands east ofHokkaido, seized from Japan after World War II; and (3) disarmament by the US and the Soviet Union progresses and the Kremlin moves toward disarmament in Asia as well.

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