The Indian Ocean Region

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Over the recent decade there has been an escalation of rivalry India and China and their role in the Indian Ocean Region. As two major emerging economies, they are faced with a security dilemma as they continue to grow economically and influentially to the surrounding states. As this process progresses the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) becomes to be one of the central security concerns. The idea that whoever controls the sea, controls the region is forcing India and China to become competitive with each other in order to secure their state interests. As these two countries continue to gain influence, who controls this region grows as a security dilemma. Furthermore, as the issue becomes more volatile the role of the United States, as the world’s superpower, in the IOR is discussed. This article examines the relationship between Indian and China and how their geographic proximity and their great power ambitions could potentially create a future security issue. A third country that plays a vital role in the IOR is the United States but as China and India grow more dominant, the future role of the United States in the IOR is uncertain. The security issue will be examined through the lens of Geopolitical Theory, specifically the work of Alfred Mahan.

The Indian Ocean

The Indian Ocean represents an increasingly significant avenue for global trade and has become an arena fraught with global security concerns (Michel, Sticklor, 2012, 9). Over the past decade, Asia’s dependence on natural resources has increased due to the large increase in population within the region. The Indian Ocean, the third largest in the world covering roughly 73 million square miles, links this entire region with its capacity to act as an effective ...

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... concentrated to deter and dissuade potential adversaries and peer competitors (Bradford, 2011, 186). This statement applies to the rising security actions that have been demonstrated between China and India in order to secure their claim over the Indian Ocean region. The United States first and foremost goal is to secure their sea lanes which they use to transport trade but if the security issues between China and India continue to rise, United States will be forced to act as a mediator and a stabilizer in this region. China and United States have similar goals and in the past have collaborated on some issues.
For example, the Chinese have collaborated with United States conducting anti-piracy activities in the Gulf of Aden. To this day these two countries collaborate on this issue. In addition to this, both countries have accommodated each other maritime leaders
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