29 August 2019

Good Riddance to the INF Treaty: Washington Shouldn’t Tie Its Own Hands in Asia

Andrew S. Erickson, “Good Riddance to the INF Treaty: Washington Shouldn’t Tie Its Own Hands in Asia,” Foreign Affairs, 29 August 2019.

In early August, the United States formally withdrew from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, a landmark 1987 arms-control accord with Russia. Just two weeks later, on a small island off the Californian coast, the Pentagon tested a land-based missile once banned under the agreement. The demise of the INF Treaty is now official, on paper as on the ground.

The treaty’s collapse was a long time coming. An agreement cannot work if only one party honors it, and the INF Treaty’s sole cosignatory, Moscow, had been flouting its rules for years. During his presidency, Barack Obama considered withdrawing from the INF for precisely the same reason that helped drive President Donald Trump’s decision. Still, to many observers, the decision to ditch the treaty is misguided and dangerous. The Trump administration, they argue, is dismantling guardrails that were erected to keep tensions from escalating into a destabilizing arms race. At a time when several elements of the global arms control architecture are fraying, this latest casualty could only make matters worse.

But that line of criticism misses the point. If unilateral U.S. adherence to the treaty was futile in the face of repeated Russian transgressions, it had become outright dangerous in the face of a much more potent adversary—China. During the INF Treaty’s 32-year lifespan, China developed the world’s foremost conventional missile force, brimming with the very weapons that the treaty prohibited the United States from developing: ground-launched cruise and ballistic missiles with a range of 500 to 5,500 kilometers. … … …

ANDREW S. ERICKSON is Visiting Scholar at Harvard’s Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies and a Professor of Strategy at the Naval War College. He is the author of the book Chinese Anti-Ship Ballistic Missile (ASBM) Development: Drivers, Trajectories and Strategic Implications.

Click here to access a full-length text-searchable PDF of the book.

 

JAPANESE-LANGUAGE VERSION:

アンドリュー・S・エリクソン [Andrew S. Erickson], 米海軍大学教授(戦略学)、ハーバード大学フェアバンクセンターの客員スカラー [Professor of Strategy, U.S. Naval War College and Visiting Scholar, Fairbank Center, Harvard University], “中国ミサイル戦力の脅威―― INF条約後の米アジア戦略” [Good Riddance to the INF Treaty: Washington Shouldn’t Tie Its Own Hands in Asia], フォーリン・アフェアーズ・リポート [Foreign Affairs Report], 4 September 2019.

中国ミサイル戦力の脅威

―― INF条約後の米アジア戦略

アンドリュー・S・エリクソン 米海軍大学戦略教授

Good Riddance to the INF Treaty Washington Shouldn’t Tie Its Own Hands in Asia

Andrew S. Erickson 米海軍大学教授(戦略学)。現在は、ハーバード大学フェアバンクセンターの客員スカラー。最近の著書にChinese Anti-Ship Ballistic Missile (ASBM) Development: Drivers, Trajectories, and Strategic Implicationsがある

(ヨーロッパの安全保障に配慮して)米ロが締結したINF条約は、これまでもワシントンのアジア戦略に対する拘束を作り出してきた。この間に、中国は世界有数の通常ミサイル戦力を整備し、(米ロ間では)生産が禁止されてきたタイプの地上配備型の射程500―5500キロのクルーズミサイル、弾道ミサイルを十分過ぎるほどに開発している。実際、サイバー空間のディスラプティブテクノロジー(破壊的技術)を別にすれば、中国のミサイル戦力を中心とする軍備増強が、アジアにおけるアメリカのパワーと影響力を形骸化させる最大の要因になるかもしれない。ワシントンはこれに対抗して「地上配備型ミサイルを基盤とする抑止」をアジアで構築すべきかもしれない。幸い、INF条約の死滅によって、ワシントンは、自国に有利な形へ軍事バランスをリセットするために必要とされていた機会を手にいれている。

  • 中国のミサイル戦力の脅威
  • 間隙を縫った中国
  • IRBMの開発・配備を