Despite declaring the ASEAN Community to come into effect on 31 December 2015, ASEAN is not a security community. This article demonstrates this by firstly identifying three models of the security community, the Deutschian, the constructivist, and the instrumental models and subsequently applying these to ASEAN. Although the paradox of the ‘long peace’ of ASEAN seems to be validated by the latter, such is mistaking effect for cause. Through a process of critique, the shortfalls of the models are highlighted and consequently addressed through conjoining Critical Security Studies to the ‘security community’ concept in a Model IV critical security community formulation to achieve a holistic and comprehensive concept relevant to the world today. Employing this to assess ASEAN, the puzzle of whether ASEAN is a security community is laid to rest; its security is not truly comprehensive, its people are not emancipated, and its various domestic and transnational instabilities affect it adversely.

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