Learning from Tuntian of Western Han
The core sea power issue that confronts China is this: how to ensure the country’s maritime security within the modern environment, and how to keep a balance between maintaining effective military deterrence and the maximization of benefits gained from the seas. While doing so, China also needs to develop an identification with, and passion for, the seas among its people. That is to say, how can China ensure security in its surrounding seas and embrace leapfrog development brought on by the maritime economy in an environment where the supply of the relevant public goods from the government is inadequate and where the nation’s maritime development and exploitation capabilities are still lacking? This situation is similar to the challenges that had confronted the people of the Western Han Dynasty over 2000 years ago on terra firma.