Blunt Defenders of Sovereignty

The Rise of Coast Guards of East and Southeast Asia

Published in: Naval War College Review, Spring 2017, Vol. 70, No. 2, p. 75-112

Posted on RAND.org on March 16, 2017

by Lyle J. Morris

Read More

Access further information on this document at digital-commons.usnwc.edu

This article was published outside of RAND. The full text of the article can be found at the link above.

Coast guards in the region are acting as "blunt defenders of sovereignty," undertaking actions such as ramming other states' coast guard and fishing vessels, rather than acting as traditional instruments of law enforcement against strictly civilian actors. The use of coast guards — nominally under civilian control — as instruments to protect claimed territory while conducting peacetime patrols of disputed maritime territory has blurred the line between the platforms and missions traditionally associated with "law enforcement" and those associated with "national defense."

This report is part of the RAND Corporation External publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.

Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit www.rand.org/about/principles.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.