The 'hub-and-spoke' alliance structure led by the United States was - and remains - a major feature of security politics in the Asia-Pacific. This article links its 'general interests' with the larger issue of the Asia-Pacific's evolving multilateral regional order. After reviewing the concept of 'hedging', the first section problematises the literature that treats the US-led alliances which constitute the hub-and-spoke system mainly as instruments for the competitive side of a hedging strategy. The second section observes that they go beyond being instruments of threat response to becoming a more complicated network of regional multilateral order-maintenance and order-building. The third section claims that the United States and its regional allies have been utilising the hub-and-spoke alliance structure as a hedge against an undesirable multilateral order emerging in the region. The fourth section examines those arguments with reference to the East Asia Summit (EAS) and the Six Party Talks. The article concludes with some thoughts about what these findings mean for the future direction of the hub-and-spoke alliance structure in the Asia-Pacific.
|Number of pages||22|
|Publication status||Published - 2011 May|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Sociology and Political Science