Asia Pacific Countries and the US Rebalancing Strategy by David W.F. Huang

By David W.F. Huang

This booklet examines the good fortune of the USA rebalancing (or pivot) approach in the direction of Asia, putting the U.S. pivot in a ancient context whereas highlighting its coverage content material and administration dilemmas. additional, the members talk about the demanding situations and possibilities that every nearby kingdom confronts in responding to the united states rebalancing strategy. 
In 2011, President Barack Obama laid out the framework for a strategic pivot folks coverage in the direction of the Asia Pacific quarter. Writers during this quantity concentration in particular on Asian belief of the method. one of the issues they discover are: China’s wish to be visible as equivalent to the united states whereas retaining international coverage tasks self reliant of the U.S. strategic rebalance; the strengthening of Japan’s alliance with the united states via its safeguard rules; using US-China festival by way of South Korea to barter its impact within the quarter; and Australia’s include of the method because of overseas direct funding that offers monetary merits to the country.
 

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But that is all beside the point: in the USA, we are encouraged to think about “China” (military threat or economic miracle) as if it exists in a vacuum; like the “Japan as Number One” literature, most of the scenarios for what China’s rise means and where China is going demand of us a certain determined blindness or averting of the eyes, such that somehow they never alight on the American lake known as the Pacific, Commander in Chief, Pacific Command (CINCPAC) in Honolulu, the Navy’s sixth and seventh fleets, the Kadena airbase, the singular Marine expeditionary force permanently located abroad in Okinawa, the international proctology practiced by myriad satellite and other technologies on China, the spy planes that the Pentagon sends along China’s coasts (while China has no such capability on our coasts), the incessant computer hacking practiced by both sides, or the B-2 “stealth” bombers that can lift off from Knob Noster, Missouri, bomb any point on the globe, and return without landing.

The “pivot to Asia” is usually seen as a move back to a neglected area, as if American forces abandoned East Asia years ago. In fact, the Obama pivot was meant to change the subject, from failed wars in Iraq and Afghanistan back to the latent, ever-present structure of US military power in East Asia that undergirds economic exchange in the world’s richest and most productive region, and that towers over any conceivable rival. President Obama can file his fingernails, take a nap, or shoot a few jump shots on the White House court, sure in the knowledge that no one would be rash and stupid enough to challenge the core structure of American power in the world’s largest body of water which also happens to be an American lake: the Pacific.

Thus, there is no Obama doctrine generally, no Obama pivot regionally, little movement in his East Asia policy since 2009, and little hope that anything will change before he leaves office. , inside the Beltway) who move in lockstep, bipartisan fashion regardless of which president or which party happens to be in office, toward their desired policies (the best place to see this in action is the informative daily blog known as The Nelson Report). Hillary Clinton was the perfect Secretary of State for such people, being such a quintessential Beltway product herself, going back to her Watergate days in the 1970s.

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