If the Trump administration can strengthen U.S. relations with Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines, we need not be terribly concerned over China’s new naval base in Cambodia.
As the Wall Street Journal reports, China is preparing to use a deep water port at Ream, Cambodia. That port would enable the Chinese navy to surge warships against the southern flank of U.S. forces in the event of a conflict over the South China Sea. It would also allow China to threaten critical global trade flows through the Singapore entrance to the Malacca Strait.
It’s a real threat, but one that can be constrained by the reinforcement of U.S. alliances. Geography explains why.