Stein Tønnesson

Research Professor

Stein Tønnesson
Work phone: +47 225 47 731
Mobile phone: +47 481 01 292

Research Interests

The East Asian Peace: Leads a six-year program, 2011-16 at the Department of Peace and Conflict Research, Uppsala University, with funding from Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, to explain that East Asia has been so relatively peaceful since 1979, and gauge the depth of that peace. See:

Democratization and peace in Myanmar: Leads a project with Marte Nilsen (PRIO), Kristine Eck (Uppsala) and Joakim Kreutz (Uppsala), funded  by the Norwegian MFA, 2012-13

Thailand's Missing Peace: Leads a project funded by the Norwegian MFA, in 2012


Work experience:

2011-2016: Leader of East Asia Peace program, Uppsala University
2010-2011: Randolph Jennings Senior Fellow, United States Institute of Peace, Washington, D.C.
2009-: Research Professor, PRIO
2001-2009: Director, PRIO
1998-2001: Professor II of Human Development Studies, SUM, University of Oslo
1992-1998: Research professor, Nordic Institute for Asia Studies (NIAS), Copenhagen
1992: Research fellow and co-editor, Journal of Peace Research, PRIO
1988-1991: Doctoral candidate, PRIO
1986-1988: Doctoral candidate, Institute of Defence Studies, Oslo
1983-1986: Employed by Norges Idrettsforbund (Norwegian Sports
Association) to write a history of Norwegian sports
1983: Assistant professor, Department of History, University of Oslo
1981-1982: Student scholarship, PRIO


1992: Dr. philos, University of Oslo (history).
1982: Cand. philol., University of Oslo (French and History).


CV: see


PRIO started tracking events online in 2007. This listing is not complete. Past events may be mentioned in our news archive.

Recent Publications

Baev, Pavel K. & Stein Tønnesson (2017) The Troubled Russia-China Partnership as a Challenge to the East Asian Peace, Fudan Journal of the Humanities and Social Sciences. DOI: 10.1007/s40647-017-0166-y.

All Publications

Peer-reviewed Journal Article

Baev, Pavel K. & Stein Tønnesson (2017) The Troubled Russia-China Partnership as a Challenge to the East Asian Peace, Fudan Journal of the Humanities and Social Sciences. DOI: 10.1007/s40647-017-0166-y.
Tønnesson, Stein (2016) Will Nationalism Drive Conflict in Asia?, Nations and Nationalism 22(2): 232–242.
Tønnesson, Stein & Elin Bjarnegård (2015) Why So Much Conflict in Thailand?, Thammasat Review 18(1): 132–161.
Baev, Pavel K. & Stein Tønnesson (2015) Can Russia keep its special ties with Vietnam while moving closer and closer to China?, International Area Studies Review 18(3): 312–325.
Tønnesson, Stein (2015) Deterrence, interdependence and Sino-US Peace, International Area Studies Review 18(3): 297–311.
Tønnesson, Stein (2015) The South China Sea: Law Trumps Power, Asian Survey 55(3): 455–477.
Song, Yann-Huei & Stein Tønnesson (2013) The Impact of the Law of the Sea Convention on Conflict and Conflict Management in the South China Sea, Ocean Development and International Law 44(3): 235–269.
Tønnesson, Stein (2012) Active Citation through Hyperlinks: The Retarded Replication Revolution, International Area Studies Review 15(1): 83–90.
Tønnesson, Stein (2012) Historiske Anfektelser [Historical Doubts], Norsk Antropologisk Tidsskrift 23(1): 48–54.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) ‘Hvor går Kina?’ Bok-essay i form av rapport til Det kongelige norske utenriksdepartement [Where Is China Heading? Review Essay in the Form of a Report to the Royal Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs] .
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) What Is It that Best Explains the East Asian Peace Since 1979? A Call for a Research Agenda , Asian Perspective 33(1): 111–136.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) The Class Route to Nationhood: China, Vietnam, Norway, Cyprus - and France, Nations and Nationalism 15(3): 375–395.


Tønnesson, Stein (2016) Den östasiatiska freden [The East Asian Peace]. Stockholm: Makadam. RJ:s skriftserie.
Tønnesson, Stein (2013) VIỆT NAM 1946: CHIẾN TRANH BẮT ĐẦU NHƯ THẾ NÀO? [Vietnam 1946: How the War Began]. Hanoi: Nhà Xuất Bản Chính Trị Quốc Gia - Sự Thật.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Vietnam 1946: How the War Began. : University of California Press. From Indochina to Vietnam: Revolution and War in a Global Perspective.

Book Chapter

Tønnesson, Stein (2016) UN Compulsory Arbitration: a Tough Test for China, in Sense and Sensibility – Addressing the South China Sea Disputes. Brussels: EU Institute of Security Studies (25–30).
Tønnesson, Stein (2016) The Tonkin Gulf Agreements: a model of conflict resolution?, in Jenner, C. J.; & Trong Thuy Tran, eds, The South China Sea: a Crucible of Regional Cooperation or Conflict-Making Sovereignty Claims?. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (151–170).
Tønnesson, Stein (2015) The 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea: Why Has It Not Brought More Peace and Cooperation?, in Le, Thuy Trang; & Trong Thuy Tran, eds, Power, Law, and Maritime Order In the South China Sea. Lanham: Lexington Books (91–100).
Tønnesson, Stein (2014) Could China and Vietnam Resolve the Conflicts in the South China Sea?, in Song, Yann-huei; & Keyuan Zou, eds, Major Law and Policy Issues In the South China Sea: European and American Perspectives. Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate (207–233).
Tønnesson, Stein (2014) China's national interests and the law of the sea: are they reconcilable?, in Wu, Shicun; & Hong Nong, eds, Recent Developments In the South China Sea Dispute: the Prospect of a Joint Development Regime. London: Routledge (199–227).
Tønnesson, Stein & Kristian Berg Harpviken (2013) Forord [Preface], in Gene Sharp, ed., Fra Diktatur Til Demokrati. Oslo: Arneberg Forlag .
Tønnesson, Stein (2013) War and Peace Between Nations, 1945–2010, in Norman Owen, ed., The Routledge Handbook of Southeast Asian History. London: Routledge (96–107).
Tønnesson, Stein (2013) Fra krig til fred i Øst-Asia [From war to peace in East-Asia], in Waage, Hilde Henriksen; Rolf Tamnes; & Hanne Hagtvedt Vik, eds, Krig Og Fred I Det Lange 20. Århundre. Oslo: Cappelen Damm Akademisk .
Tønnesson, Stein(2010) Sørøst-Asias demokratihåp [Southeast Asian's Hope of Democracy] : .
Tønnesson, Stein(2010) Sørøst-Asias demokratihåp [Southeast Asia's Democratic Torchbearer] : .
Tønnesson, Stein(2009) Energy Security and Climate Change: The Potential Role of China and India Political Economy of Energy In Europe. : (237–270).
Tønnesson, Stein (2008) Hva er nytt i krig? [What's New in War?], in Skjeie, Hege; Inger Skjelsbæk; & Torunn L. Tryggestad, eds, Kjønn, Krig, Konflikt. Oslo: PAX (127–137).
Tønnesson, Stein(2008) An International History of the Dispute in the South China Sea The People’S Republic of China and Southeast Asia (Routledge Library on Southeast Asia, Vol. VI). : (337–362).
Tønnesson, Stein(2007) Olje gir makt [Oil Makes Power] : .
Tønnesson, Stein (2006) Le Duan and the Break with China: Introduction to a Document Translated by Christopher E. Goscha, in Behind the Bamboo Curtain. China, Vietnam, and the World Beyond Asia. (453–467).

Non-refereed Journal Article

Tønnesson, Stein (2015) Explaining East Asia's Developmental Peace: The Dividends of Economic Growth, Global Asia 10(4): 10–15.
Tønnesson, Stein (2015) The East Asian Peace: How Did It Happen?`How Deep Is It? Introduction to special issue, Global Asia 10(4): 8–9.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Blodige konflikter i Thailand [Bloody Conflicts in Thailand], Hvor hender det? 7(1).
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) China's Changing Role in the South China Sea: Reflections on a Scholars' Workshop , Harvard Asia Quarterly 12(4): 18–30.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Storm over Korea [Storm in Korea] , Hvor Hender Det? 2010(2): .
Tønnesson, Stein (2008) Asia in a Nordic Nutshell , Niasnytt 2008(2): 34–35.

Popular Article

Hegghammer, Thomas; Thomas Hylland Eriksen & Stein Tønnesson (2016) EU-forskning koster Norge dyrt [EU research is expensive for Norway], Aftenposten.
Tønnesson, Stein (2015) Krigshistorien sett fra øst: Når Kina markerer krigens slutt i morgen, stadfestes også partnerskapet mellom Kina og Russland [War History in an Eastern Perspective: When China celebrates the end of WW2 tomorrow, it also reconfirms its partnership with Russia], Klassekampen.
Tønnesson, Stein (2013) Steps Forward for China to Resolve its Disputes in the South China Sea, Global Asia, 20 juni.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) USA mot Kina i Sørkinahavet [The USA Against China in the South China Sea], Morgenbladet, 9 December.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Når Kinaboblen brister [When the China Bubble Bursts], Morgenbladet, 11 November.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Krig og fred i Kinas nærområde [War and Peace around China], Forsvarets Forum, 9 November.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Jagland-paradokset [The Jagland Paradox], Dagens Næringsliv, 19 October.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Kinesisk demokrati [Chinese Democracy], Morgenbladet, 7 October.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Hvem kan lede kloden? [Who Can Lead the Globe?], Morgenbladet, 2 September.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Frihetens datter fra Sogn [Liberty's Daughter from Sogn], Morgenbladet, 22 July.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Zhongguo yinggai ruhe pingxi nanzhongguohai fengbo [How China May Prevent Controversy in the South China Sea], Lianhe Zaobao (Singapore), 1 July.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) How to Calm the South China Sea Storm, My Paper (Singapore), 27 June.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Står klare etter menns svik [Stand Rdady When Men Fail], Morgenbladet, 10 June.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Burma vil inn i det gode selskap [Burma Wants to Join the World], Morgenbladet, 29 April.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Risiko for opprør i Asia [Risk of Revolt in Asia], Morgenbladet, 4 March.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Fra folkekrig til folkemakt [From People's War to People Power], Morgenbladet, 11 February.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Da Hu og Obama ble likemenn [When Hu and Obama Became Equals], Morgenbladet, 28 January.
Tønnesson, Stein (2011) Obama mot sentrum [Obama Moving Towards the Centre], Morgenbladet, 7 January.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Kim Jong-il tør ikke [Kim Jong-il Doesn’t Dare], Morgenbladet, 2 December.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Såre fingre av sensur [Sore Fingers From Censoring], Morgenbladet, 15 October.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Skarp Satiriker [Sharp Satire], Morgenbladet, 15 October.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Hvor går Kina? [Where Is China Heading?]8 October.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Farlig kinesisk spill [Risky Chinese Game], Morgenbladet, 1 October.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Langt igjen til gjenforent Korea [Long Before Korea Will Be United], Morgenbladet, 20 August.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Rødt mot gult i Asia [Red Versus Yellow in Asia], Morgenbladet, 16 July.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Fredsskapende kvinner i Sør-Thailand [Peace Making Women in Southern Thailand], Morgenbladet, 11 June.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Fredsskapende grenser [Peace Making Borders], Morgenbladet, 7 May.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Stormakter beskylder hverandre for proteksjonisme [Great Powers Accuse Each Other of Protectionism], Morgenbladet, 26 March.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) 'Luu Doan Huynh (1929-2010)', obituary, Vietnam Studies Group, 23 February.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Forskere bekymrer seg for Kina [Researchers are Concerned About China], Morgenbladet, 22 January.
Tønnesson, Stein (2010) Kina gir lite ved dørene [China Does Not Concede Much], Morgenbladet, 22 January.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) God tale på feil sted [Good Speech in Wrong Place], Morgenbladet, 24 December.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) God tale på feil sted [Good Speech in the Wrong Place], Morgenbladet, 24 December.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Peace for Asia, Asia Insights, No. 2 (1 December).
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Kan Kina og USAs skjebnefellesskap ha blitt så tett at det forrykker maktbalansen i Øst-Asia? [May the Shared Destiny of China and the USA Disrupt the Power Balance in East Asia?], Morgenbladet, 20 November.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Generasjonsskifter: 1979 var et vendepunkt. Står vi ved et nytt? [Generation Change. 1979 Was a Turning Point. Is Another One Coming?], Morgenbladet, 16 October.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Tretti år med fred [Thirty Years with Peace], Kina & Vi, 1 October.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Fred tross alt i Ukraina [Peace in Spite of Everything in Ukraine], Morgenbladet, 18–24 September.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Tretti år med fred [Thirty Years of Peace], Kina & Vi, 3–4.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Iran og Nord-Koreas gode fiende [Iran and North Korea's Good Enemy], Morgenbladet, 7 August.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Kina leter etter sin globale identitet [China's search for a global identity], Morgenbladet, 24–29 April.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Norske interesser og verdier [Norwegian interests and values ], Morgenbladet, 17–23 April.
Tønnesson, Stein;Aardal, Bernt; & Harpviken, Kristian Berg (2009) Rekruttering med mål, Aftenposten, 23 March.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Vinnere og tapere i krisen [Winners and Losers in the Crisis], Morgenbladet, 13 March.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Intet selvmord på PRIO [No Suicide at PRIO], Aftenposten, 20 February.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Obama gir håp om stillehavssamarbeid [Obama Provides Hope for Pacific Cooperation], Morgenbladet, 6–12 February.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Må sikre fri forskning [Necessary to Secure Free Research], Aftenposten, 1 February.
Tønnesson, Stein (2009) Kinesisk hukommelse og glemsel [Chinese Memory and Forgetfulness], Morgenbladet, 9–15 January.
Tønnesson, Stein (2008) Fredsavtale som inspirerer [Inspiring Peace Agreement], Morgenbladet, 21–27 November.
Tønnesson, Stein (2008) Thailands demokratiske dilemma [Thailand's Democratic Dilemma], Morgenbladet, 14–20 November.
Tønnesson, Stein (2008) Om å gjette feil fredspris [About Making Wrong Peace Prize Predictions], Morgenbladet, 17–23 October 2008.
Tønnesson, Stein (2008) Hva Krimkrigen har å lære oss [Lessons of The Crimean War], Morgenbladet, 12–18 September.
Tønnesson, Stein (2008) India er ikke som Kina [India is not like China], Morgenbladet, 8 August.
Tønnesson, Stein (2008) Indisk optimisme - tross alt [Indian Optimism - in spite of everything], Morgenbladet, 4 July.
Tønnesson, Stein (2008) Mindre terror i verden [Less terror in the world], Morgenbladet, 30 May.
Tønnesson, Stein (2008) Kinas såre fred [China's Sore Peace], Morgenbladet, 25 April.
Tønnesson, Stein (2008) Kypros-løsning i sikte [Cyprus Solution in View], Morgenbladet , 14 March.
Tønnesson, Stein (2005) Splittede samfunn [Divided Societies], Morgenbladet, 2 December.

PRIO Report

Tønnesson, Stein; Øystein Noreng; Are Hovdenak; & Hilde Henriksen Waage (2005) Regime Stability in the Middle East, PRIO Report, 3. Oslo: PRIO.
Tønnesson, Stein (1984) Outbreak of War in Indochina 1946, PRIO Report, 3. Oslo: PRIO.

Conference Paper

Tønnesson, Stein 2009 The 'Vietnam Peace' - How Priorities in Vietnam's Internal and External Policies Changed after 1987, presented at 50th Annual Convention of the International Studies Association, , 15–18 February.
Tønnesson, Stein 2008 How Historians May Explain the 'East Asian Peace', presented at 49th Annual Convention of the International Studies Association, , 26–29 March.
Tønnesson, Stein; & Tønnesson, Stein 2006Closing Speech, presented at Second Annual Conference of the PRIO Cyprus Centre22 November.
Tønnesson, Stein 2003 Present World Politics and Global Peace, presented at 2nd Humanity Conference, EarthHuman Peace Forum, , 1–3 March.
Tønnesson, Stein 2001 Marine vietnamienne et défense de l’espace maritime, presented at the conference ‘Vietnam depuis 1945’, , 11–12 January.

PRIO Policy Brief

Nilsen , Marte & Stein Tønnesson (2016) A New Era for Myanmar – Trouble Ahead for Ethnic Minorities, PRIO Policy Brief, 5. Oslo: PRIO.
Nilsen , Marte & Stein Tønnesson (2016) A New Era for Myanmar – Trouble Ahead for Ethnic Minorities (Burmese Version), PRIO Policy Brief, 5. Oslo: PRIO.
Tønnesson, Stein (2015) ASEAN’s Rohingya Challenge, PRIO Policy Brief, 9. Oslo: PRIO.
Nilsen , Marte & Stein Tønnesson (2014) Myanmar’s National Census – Helping or ​Disrupting Peace?, PRIO Policy Brief, 1. Oslo: PRIO.
Nilsen , Marte & Stein Tønnesson (2014) High Risk of Electoral Violence in Myanmar, PRIO Policy Brief, 6. Oslo: PRIO.
Nilsen , Marte & Stein Tønnesson (2014) High Risk of Electoral Violence in Myanmar (BURMESE version), PRIO Policy Brief, 6. Oslo: PRIO.
Nilsen , Marte & Stein Tønnesson (2013) Political Parties and Peacebuilding in Myanmar, PRIO Policy Brief, 5. Oslo: PRIO.
Nilsen , Marte & Stein Tønnesson (2012) Can Myanmar’s 2008 Constitution Be Made To Satisfy Ethnic Aspirations?, PRIO Policy Brief, 11. Oslo: PRIO.

Report - Other

Tønnesson, Stein; & Åshild Kolås (2006) Energy Security in Asia: China, India, Oil and Peace, Report to the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Oslo: PRIO.

Book Review

Tønnesson, Stein (2013) Review of Raine, Sarah; & Christian Le Mière , eds, Regional Disorder: The South China Sea Disputes, in Global Asia 8(2): 110–112.
Raine, Sarah & Christian Le Mière (2013) Review of Review of Stein Tønnesson, ed., Regional Disorder: The South China Sea Disputes , in Global Asia 8(2): 110–112.
Tønnesson, Stein(2011) Review of A One-Man Atlas for the Digital World .
Tønnesson, Stein(2011) Review of Imperial Alchemy .
Tønnesson, Stein(2010) Review of JPR Book Note: O’Dowd, Edward C., 2007. Chinese Military Strategy in the Third Indochina War: The Last Maoist War. London: Routledge 664.
Tønnesson, Stein(2010) Review of JPR Book Note: Chaliand, Gérard, 2008. Le nouvel art de la guerre. Paris: l'Archipel. [Chaliand, Gérard, 2008. The New Art of War. Paris: l'Archipel.] 662.
Tønnesson, Stein(2010) Review of JPR Book Note: Fravel, M. Taylor, 2008. Strong Borders, Secure Nation: Cooperation and Conflict in China’s Territorial Disputes. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press 662.
Tønnesson, Stein(2010) Review of JPR Book Note: Macmillan, Margaret, 2007. Nixon and Mao: The Week that Changed the World. New York: Random House 663.
Tønnesson, Stein(2010) Review of JPR Book Note: Smith, Ralph B., 2009. Pre-Communist Indochina. Ed. by Beryl Williams. London: Routledge and Smith, Ralph B., 2009. Communist Indochina. Ed. by Beryl Williams. London: Routledge 665.
Tønnesson, Stein(2010) Review of Book Review: Emmers, Ralf, Geopolitics and Maritime Territorial Disputes in East Asia. London: Routledge, 2010 111–113.
Tønnesson, Stein(2010) Review of ‘Villedende om krig’, Book Review: Østerud, Øyvind, Hva er krig? Oslo: U-forlaget, 2010 [Distorting About War] .
Tønnesson, Stein (2001) Review of Translating Foreign Ideas into Domestic Practices. Pharmaceutical Policies in Laos and Vietnam, in Statsvetenskaplig Tidskrift 104(4): 390–393.

Blog Posts

Trump and Threats to Truth, Democracy and Peace

Posted by Stein Tønnesson on Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Stein Tønnesson delivered this year’s The Fjord Memorial Lecture  at Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences, Lillehammer. The lecture discusses Trump’s team of advisors, calls for fighting the increasing use of lies in political campaigning, sees Trump’s election as having weakened democracy worldwide, and perceives a major risk to world peace. Tønnesson ends the lecture with four scenarios for how Trump’s foreign policy may develop: chaos, status quo, lucky bargaining, or war. Oh Mr Fjord, – it feels strange that you’re fictional while Donald Trump is real. You, the trainee reporter at the Norwegian local newspaper The Dawn; the history ...

Myanmar's Ethnic Minorities Marginalized More

Posted by Marte Nilsen & Stein Tønnesson on Wednesday, 13 April 2016

For the first time in over half a century, Myanmar has a government with a popular mandate, led by the National League for Democracy (NLD). Although the Myanmar armed forces still have extensive political powers under the 2008 constitution, and may seriously curtail the independent action of the new government, the inauguration of President Htin Kyaw represents a radical increase in the internal and international legitimacy of the Myanmar State. Paradoxically, this coincides with a setback for the country’s ethnic minorities and their struggle for autonomous status. Myanmar’s ethnic minority organisations now face a double marginalisation, militarily as well as ...

In Defence of the Reviled 20th century

Posted by Håvard Strand & Stein Tønnesson on Wednesday, 30 December 2015

The century of peace. The 20th century laid the foundations for what could make our century a century of peace. The 20th century is often referred to as the bloodiest in human history. Towards the end of that century, the historians Eric Hobsbawm, Gabriel Kolko and Niall Ferguson published general narratives entitled, respectively, Age of Extremes, Century of War, and The War of the World. Last year there were many publications warning against the outbreak of a new world war of the same kind as the one unleashed by the Guns of August one hundred years earlier. Yet, in spite ...

World War II Becomes a Chinese War

Posted by Stein Tønnesson on Thursday, 3 September 2015

70 years ago, Japan signed an agreement of formal surrender on an American warship in Tokyo Bay. The anniversary of this event will be marked in Beijing today, September 3rd by a massive military parade in which Chinese and Russian soldiers march together. President Xi Jinping’s most important guest during the parade will be Russian president Vladimir Putin. Thanks to Putin, the memory of World War II has shifted from Europe to Asia. Xi and Putin will celebrate their joint victory over German Nazism and Japanese militarism. When Russia invaded Crimea and sent troops into eastern Ukraine last year, an ...

14 March 1988: East Asia's Last Interstate Battle

Posted by Stein Tønnesson on Friday, 24 July 2015

Since the Sino-Vietnamese war of 1979 – a period of 36 years – there has not been one single war between states in the whole of East Asia, a region comprising one third of mankind, and which was ravaged by some of the word’s worst wars from the 1840s to the 1970s. There have been internal armed conflicts in several Southeast Asian countries since then (Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand) but no interstate wars. Yet there have been some serious incidents, like the sinking of the South Korean warship Cheonan in 2010, presumably by a North Korean torpedo, ...

ASEAN’s Rohingya Challenge: Can ASEAN fail to act and yet be a Community?

Posted by Stein Tønnesson on Wednesday, 17 June 2015

A human tragedy has been unfolding in the Bay of Bengal. Thousands of poor Rohingya and Bangladeshi refugees and job seekers have been the victims of xenophobia, cynical smugglers and incapable governance. What has ASEAN done? So far very little. Yet this crisis is exactly the kind of non-traditional trans-national security challenge that ASEAN must cope with if it means seriously its ambition to form a peaceful “ASEAN Community” by December 2015. The exodus of refugees and job seekers from Myanmar and Bangladesh presents an acute challenge for ASEAN Four member countries are directly involved: Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia ...

Can Putin trust China?

Posted by Stein Tønnesson on Tuesday, 24 February 2015

The Ukraine crisis has made Russia more dependent on China. Putin is popular in Beijing, and Putin and Chinese leader Xi Jinping are the best of friends. But can China save Russia from its crisis? 70 years ago, from 4-11 February 1945, Josef Stalin received US president Franklin D. Roosevelt, and British prime minister Winston Churchill, at Yalta in the Crimea. Stalin was at the height of his power. Without informing Chinese generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, who had been fighting against Japan since 1937, the “great leaders” agreed that the Soviet Union would join the war against Japan as soon as ...

WWII Celebration Plans by Putin and Xi to Score Points

Posted by Stein Tønnesson on Monday, 17 November 2014

Russian and Chinese presidents aim to divide US and allies, including Japan, with WWII celebration. When Chinese President Xi Jinping met Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Beijing for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit, he stated that “Japan must look at history squarely and more towards the future.” Xi’s carefully selected words were taken from a text agreed upon in advance by the two countries’ foreign ministries. Behind the words lurk an agreement Xi has made with Russian President Vladimir Putin to jointly use the 70th anniversary in 2015 to “safeguard the outcome of the victory of World War II ...

Norway's Tightrope Walk in Myanmar

Posted by Marte Nilsen, Stein Tønnesson & Emil Jeremic on Thursday, 23 October 2014

Are the people of Myanmar able to distinguish between Norway’s role in promoting peace and the commercial interests of Norwegian businesses? Now that several state-owned Norwegian companies have entered into large and risky ventures in Myanmar, Norway is walking a tightrope between peace and commerce. The maintenance of support for the peace process is critical. Peace and commercial interests Norway has gained an international reputation as a peace builder, a role enabled by, among other factors, the Nobel Peace Prize and Norway’s status as a small country on the edge of Europe, without superpower pretensions. Norway’s oil wealth has made ...

Article 9 and the East Asian Peace

Posted by Stein Tønnesson on Wednesday, 8 October 2014

World War 1 was primarily a European War. World War 2 was both European and Asian. World War 3 has not yet occurred. If it does, it will be mainly Asian. Provided the pattern of alliances and strategic partnerships continues to look the way it does today, World War 3 will pit a Russia-supported China against a grand alliance of the United States, Japan, India, Indonesia and Australia. This grand alliance will win the war but at the prize of unimaginable destruction, even risk of a nuclear exchange. The New Centre of the World East Asia is now the world’s ...

Myanmar's National Census - Helping or Disrupting Peace?

Posted by Marte Nilsen & Stein Tønnesson on Wednesday, 12 February 2014

In March/April 2014 Myanmar will carry out its first population and housing census in more than 30 years. If carried out properly it may provide reliable data to be used not just by the government, but also by civil society organizations and political parties, as a basis for negotiating the terms of the country’s future peace. In a PRIO Policy Brief we analyse the preparations for the census, discuss the risks and challenges, and provide recommendations for how to conduct the census in a conflict sensitive way. The Policy Brief aims to reach stakeholders in Myanmar, and has been translated ...

Related pages