Daniel C. Lee

Date of Graduation

Spring 2014


Master of Science in Defense and Strategic Studies


Defense and Strategic Studies

Committee Chair

Andrei Shoumikhin


United Nations Convention on Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN), Islamic Republican Guard Corps Navy (IRGCN), Islamic Republic of Iran Navy (IRIN), Anti-Access, Area Denial (A2/AD)

Subject Categories

Defense and Security Studies


The goal of this thesis is to explore and clarify the extensive and contested maritime claims of the People's Republic of China and the Islamic Republic of Iran and to examine how the U.S. navy is equipped to address them should tensions escalate to armed confrontation. These island claims are both dubious and un-codified in the eyes of the international community, and the attendant maritime claims of expansive Territorial Seas and Exclusive Economic Zones run counter to U.S. strategic goals in both regions. The economic importance of the waters at stake and the potential for conflict as the result of contested claims make the rapid development of potent naval forces by China and Iran a concern for the U.S. who has the duty to both meet treaty obligations to defend allies and to protect the Global Commons which will require articulated strategy and material investment in naval capabilities for the region.


© Daniel C. Lee

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