Conflict and Cooperation in the Global Commons

Conflict and Cooperation in the Global Commons: A Comprehensive Approach for International Security

Copyright Date: 2012
Pages: 280
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  • Book Info
    Conflict and Cooperation in the Global Commons
    Book Description:

    More than ever, international security and economic prosperity depend upon safe access to the shared domains that make up the global commons: maritime, air, space, and cyberspace. Together these domains serve as essential conduits through which international commerce, communication, and governance prosper. However, the global commons are congested, contested, and competitive. In the January 2012 defense strategic guidance, the United States confirmed its commitment "to continue to lead global efforts with capable allies and partners to assure access to and use of the global commons, both by strengthening international norms of responsible behavior and by maintaining relevant and interoperable military capabilities." In the face of persistent threats, some hybrid in nature, and their consequences, Conflict and Cooperation in the Global Commons provides a forum where contributors identify ways to strengthen and maintain responsible use of the global commons. The result is a comprehensive approach that will enhance, align, and unify commercial industry, civil agency, and military perspectives and actions.

    eISBN: 978-1-58901-923-2
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. List of Illustrations
    (pp. vii-viii)
  4. Foreword: Contested Superiority in the Commons
    (pp. ix-xii)
    Thomas G. Mahnken

    The United States has a long-standing interest in protecting access to the global commons. Since the founding of the Republic, the US military has safeguarded American lives and trade abroad. Military power not only has provided security and prosperity for the nation, it also has protected international airspace and the high seas to guarantee the free flow of ideas, commerce, and travel around the world. The global community must have unimpeded access to space and cyberspace together with the air and maritime domains. The ability to protect the commons is paramount to the progress, well-being, and stability of the entire...

  5. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xiii-xiv)
  6. Abbreviations
    (pp. xv-xviii)
  7. Introduction: A Comprehensive Approach
    (pp. 1-20)

    National security and economic prosperity depend on safeguarding the global commons, which are the “domains or areas that no one state controls but on which all rely.”¹ The global commons comprise four domains: maritime, air, space, and cyber.² The maritime and air domains are international oceans and skies that are not under the sovereign control of any individual nation. Outer space begins at that point above the earth where objects can remain in orbit, whereas cyberspace is a digital world generated through computer networks. Although cyberspace relies on the infrastructures of individual nations, it is globally connected and requires cooperation...

    • CHAPTER 1 Problems in Collective Action
      (pp. 23-40)

      Soft and hard power are intrinsically tied to the measured use of global public goods that exist in the global commons. Diplomatic power relies heavily on unfettered access to airspace through which national interests are promoted by governments, to oceans in which the balance of power is enforced in accordance with the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, and to both outer space and cyberspace by which allies, partners, adversaries, and international organizations communicate and inform the global public.¹ Ideological power encompasses for many nations the ideals of democracy, free trade, universal human rights, and advancement of scientific...

    • CHAPTER 2 The Character of Conflict
      (pp. 41-54)
      IAN K. ADAM

      The nature of conflict is enduring. It can be violent, often uncontrollable, and unpredictable. Moreover, it has evolved over the centuries because of various factors. Adversaries, be they state or nonstate actors, meet new challenges by adopting the weaponry and tactics at hand. Lessons are learned after each successive war, not least by third parties, and then applied to gain advantage in the future. The impact of social media on both domestic and international public opinion is a factor that is shaping conflict and civil unrest in the twenty-first century, as recent dramatic events in North Africa and the Middle...

    • CHAPTER 3 Strategies of Deterrence
      (pp. 55-68)

      In early 2011, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates spoke to cadets at the US Military Academy and the US Air Force Academy as part of a farewell tour during which he sought to engage a future generation of officers on the requirements of a twenty-first-century military. He warned them not to view the world “through the prism of the twentieth century . . . oriented towards winning big battles in big wars against nation-states comparably armed and equipped.” Neither will the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq become templates for military engagements. Instead, the United States and its allies must be...

    • CHAPTER 4 The Maritime Commons and Military Power
      (pp. 71-88)

      Oceans and the airspace above them were the first internationally recognized global commons and the model for analyzing the emerging space and cyberspace domains. The role of the commons in developing and facilitating international trade is indisputable. Mitigating security threats to the maritime commons benefited all nations, even noncoastal states. Piracy, terrorism, and other criminal acts at sea must be countered to protect free trade and international commerce. Respect for freedom of navigation must be maintained by all nations, particularly through nonterritorial waters illegally claimed by coastal states and international straits. Other threats to the oceans are major concerns including...

    • CHAPTER 5 Coercive Aerospace Campaigns
      (pp. 89-104)

      Aerospace power is the key to gaining strategic advantages in any theater by the application of military force via platforms either operating in or passing through air and space. Control of the skies is a critical enabler in dominating the earth’s surface and a major determinant of victory. Air superiority provides leaders with the operational freedom to coerce other nations to make concessions in an international dispute or gain a decisive edge on the land in the event of war.

      Aerospace power uses the integrated application of force and information operations on the strategic and operational levels to compel enemies...

    • CHAPTER 6 Aggression in Cyberspace
      (pp. 105-120)

      Computer intrusions and attacks have become methods for aggression. The frequency of incidents coupled with their implications has driven the Pentagon to formally recognize cyberspace as a domain for military activities for the purposes of organizing, training, equipping, and when directed, operating our forces.¹ Technological advances continue to influence the art of war. Perhaps the greatest technological impact came when attacks moved from being physical to being digital. Given that reality, cyberspace now has joined the other traditional conflict domains. However, cyber represents a primary form of attack as well as a support role for other domains. Over the years...

    • CHAPTER 7 Building Collaborative Capacity for Maritime Security
      (pp. 123-140)

      The global commons facilitate the movement of people, goods, information, and technology via air, sea, space, and cyberspace.¹ International security and economic competitiveness depend on open access to the commons. The UN Convention on the Law of the Sea has established rules for activity on the seas, including rights and duties of coastal states regarding territorial seas and rights and duties of ships in innocent or transit passage on the oceans of the world. This treaty was signed in 1982 by more than 155 nations and demonstrates global commitment to maritime security.

      The introduction to this book argues that maintaining...

    • CHAPTER 8 Assuring Joint Operational Access
      (pp. 141-154)

      The doctrine of joint operational access—getting forward, staying forward, and operating along secured lines of communication—is as expensive as it is critical.¹ Since World War II joint operational access has generated profound strategic, operational, and tactical advantages for the United States and its allies. Given current strategic and resource constraints on defense planning going forward, reconsidering its virtues, requirements, and costs is one of the more fundamental issues confronting military strategic planners.

      Perhaps joint operational access has come to be taken for granted. Operating far forward emerged from the victories of World War II and was annealed by...

    • CHAPTER 9 Shaping the Outer Space and Cyberspace Environments
      (pp. 155-170)

      The international security environment is uncertain, dynamic, complex, and dangerous. This is due in part to the emergence of outer space and cyberspace as new arenas of competition and conflict. In the twenty-first century the United States and its allies must be able to deter and, if necessary, to fight and win wars in multiple domains (land, sea, air, space, and cyber) and modalities (irregular, conventional, and nuclear).¹

      The bipolar structure that characterized international relations during most of the last century was transformed by dramatic and disruptive changes in the aftermath of the Cold War. Today there is a diffusion...

    • CHAPTER 10 Maritime Security Consortiums
      (pp. 173-184)

      The ocean covers 71 percent of the earth’s surface.¹ The ability to traverse, exploit, and share this vast expanse is crucial to the security and prosperity of every nation around the world. The maritime domain is essential to global mobility and trade and is an abundant source of vital resources, from food to energy. Because of its indispensability, Alfred Mahan regarded the ocean as “the great common” of mankind.² In an existential sense, the maritime domain could be considered the “critical infrastructure” of global society, which must be preserved and protected for the benefit of all nations.³

      The shared imperative...

    • CHAPTER 11 Cyber Security Social Contract
      (pp. 185-198)

      The strategic importance of cyberspace networks and the absence of the preparedness measures to deal with cyber threats against them are recognized by both civil and military constituencies.¹ The unfettered use of the other domains—air, sea, and space—largely depends on cyber systems for their management and control. As a result the challenge of developing practical and sustainable systems to administer and secure the cyberspace domain is critical to effectively operating in the global commons. In the words of the president of the United States, “this cyber threat is one of the most serious economic and national security challenges...

    • CHAPTER 12 Setting Norms for Activities in Space
      (pp. 201-214)

      Space is a very demanding domain in which to operate, even when nations choose not to impose barriers to each other’s success. Space can easily become a chaotic domain as more countries, national enterprises, international consortiums, and nongovernmental entities with contesting agendas seek gains or seek to deny gains to others. Some barriers to successful space operations are growing markedly, such as space debris that can have indiscriminate and lethal effects. Other potential barriers in the form of multipurpose technologies such as lasers that could be used to interrupt, harm, or destroy spacecraft or their operations are not hard to...

    • CHAPTER 13 Establishing Rules for Cyber Security
      (pp. 215-232)

      The comparison of cyberspace to the high seas, civil aviation, and viral diseases has generated a debate on the applicability of their regulation to the cyber domain. A group of nations led by Russia and China is calling for a new regulatory approach to the cyber domain.¹ This debate has advanced efforts to explicate the definition, management, and regulation of information-driven society and the corresponding threats. However, before deciding on new regulatory steps, it is useful to look to existing legal concepts that have been designed with the cyber domain in mind or reflect upon accepted principles that can be...

  13. Conclusion: Avoiding Conflict and Facilitating Cooperation
    (pp. 233-248)

    This volume brings together both security precedents and best practices to guide strategies and partnerships for responsible and sustainable use of the global commons. Despite the imperative to respond to nefarious threats to security and prosperity, considerable debate persists regarding the most effective mechanisms for encouraging cooperative behavior. All the contributors have underscored the need for promoting international norms via voluntary adherence to established standards of conduct and universally recognized ethical behaviors; however, they refrain from prescribing international legal regimes as the preferred normative model. Inclusivity and incentives, rather than legal coercion, form the basis of the suggested codes of...

  14. Selected Bibliography
    (pp. 249-252)
  15. Contributors
    (pp. 253-256)
  16. Index
    (pp. 257-260)