East Asia is the one part of the world where great-power war remains thinkable. That is because it is the only region where the Cold War left a residue of unresolved great-power strategic tensions. The United States must engage itself, and maintain a balance of power, in the western Pacific. To do so, it still needs large resources of maritime power, and nuclear weapons.
Auer, James E. and Lim, Robyn
"The Maritime Basis of American Security in East Asia,"
Naval War College Review: Vol. 54
, Article 4.
Available at: http://digital-commons.usnwc.edu/nwc-review/vol54/iss1/4