New book: Red Star over the Pacific, Second Edition

RED STAR cover art

A second edition of Red Star over the Pacific appeared in a limited run in late November 2018 before making its official debut early in 2019. The first edition, an Atlantic Monthly Best Book of the Year, appeared in 2010, observing that China might veer from the normal growth of a maritime great power into full-blown strategic competition with the United States, its friends and allies in Asia, and neutrals. That future is now.

The second edition explores the contours of the U.S.-China strategic competition and urges Washington to embrace a more risk-taking approach to the competition. Otherwise it may forfeit its alliances, its economic interests in the region, and its stewardship of freedom of the sea and the liberal system of trade and commerce as a whole. The book has been named to the U.S. Navy and U.S. Indo-Pacific Command Professional Reading Lists as well as the U.S. Marine Corps Commandant’s Professional Reading List.

Red Star over the Pacific appeared through the Naval Institute Press, a charter member of the Association of University Presses.

Endorsements from the cover:

“For many years now, James Holmes and Toshi Yoshihara have been the go-to pair for both a granular and strategic understanding of the American-Chinese naval rivalry. Their new edition of Red Star Over the Pacific, a seminal work when first published, will be a requirement for everybody in the field.” —Robert D. Kaplan, author of The Return of Marco Polo’s World: War, Strategy, and American Interests in the Twenty-first Century

“This is must reading. In their landmark Red Star Over the Pacific, Toshi Yoshihara and James Holmes warned us Chinese sea power is here to stay and could veer toward aggression. Their warning was prophetic. With this second edition they help us prepare for the competitive future they foresaw.”—Adm. James Stavridis, USN (Ret.), author of Sea Power: The History and Geopolitics of the World’s Oceans and dean emeritus, Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University

“Yoshihara and Holmes have written the definitive, comprehensive description of China’s growing emphasis on sea power and determination to be influential on the high seas. This book affords many clues to ways to make affordable changes in the composition and tactics needed in our Navy to retain the confidence of our Asian allies and help keep the peace or constrain the level of conflict in the Western Pacific.” —Capt. Wayne P. Hughes Jr., USN (Ret.), author of Fleet Tactics and Naval Operations, Third Edition

“Based on meticulous use of Chinese language and other such authoritative sources and using Mahanian thinking as a frame of analysis, this book explains China’s naval rise rather than just documents its latest ships and submarines. Setting the new Chinese navy firmly in its domestic and international context, the authors dissect China’s naval aspirations and analyze their likely success and strategic consequence”—Geoffrey Till, professor emeritus and chair of the Corbett Centre for Maritime Policy, King’s College London, and author of Seapower: A Guide for the Twenty-First Century

“Yoshihara and Holmes sounded an early alarm over China’s strategic maritime competition in their seminal work, Red Star Over the Pacific. Their prescient warning contributed to the material shift in U.S. national security strategy in 2017 recognizing the risk and reality of great power competition in the maritime domain in the Indo-Pacific.” —Philip M. Bilden, member, Chief of Naval Operations Executive Panel; vice chairman, Naval War College Foundation

“In Red Star Over the Pacific, James Holmes and Toshi Yoshihara presciently postulated China’s game plan to become a serious oceangoing power. In this edition, they meticulously analyze how China is innovatively expanding its envelope of maritime dominance in the Pacific. This is not to be missed.” —Admiral Nirmal Verma, former Chief of the Indian Naval Staff and Chief of Naval Operations Fellow, U.S. Naval War College