Thursday, February 13, 2020

Review of "Arms in the Indian Ocean: Interests and Challenges," by Dale R. Tahtinen

Review of

Arms in the Indian Ocean: Interests and Challenges, by Dale R. Tahtinen ISBN 0844732427

Five out of five stars

 In 2020, the island of Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean is a major U. S. military base, containing major airstrips as well as facilities to support all types of naval ships. Yet, there was a time when there was an intense debate in the United States congress as to whether the U. S. should have a major base in the area. This book was written in 1977, when the debate over whether the U. S. should militarize the Indian Ocean was heating up.

 The author covers what is considered to be the most likely conflicts to arise in the area of southern Asia. One of the primary issues is the conflict between Somalia and the other nations that contain ethnic Somalis. When the colonial powers carved up East Africa, ethnic boundaries were irrelevant. Other potential areas of conflict are between Iran and other Islamic nations, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India and between the nations on the Arabian peninsula. It closes with an appendix that lists the major military hardware assets of the countries.

 This book is a great look back at how an expert thought of the state of the region of the world that bordered the Indian Ocean. Much has happened since then, most of it bad. Many of the conflicts that the author considers in this book have come about and some are still active.

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