Washington is charting an expanded American political and military role in the Asia-Pacific region. Termed “rebalancing” or “pivoting” to Asia, the Obama administration argues that the realignment of American military might and political focus is not meant to counter a more assertive China, but to refresh relationships with allies that have been neglected in recent years and to maintain stability in the region.
While proponents of the policy insist it is long overdue, Boston University’s Robert Ross, an expert on Chinese politics, argues in a recent Foreign Affairs essay that the move is unnecessarily provocative toward China and will likely stimulate further polarization of an already tense region. Ross discussed this critical issue, and Christopher Clarke, retired China analyst for the U.S. government, added his thoughts. Carnegie’s Michael D. Swaine moderated.
Overall, both Ross and Clarke agreed that Washington has to become more cognizant of the Chinese leadership’s mindset and avoid stoking more tension in the Asia-Pacific region.
The Carnegie Asia Program in Beijing and Washington provides clear and precise analysis to policy makers on the complex economic, security, and political developments in the Asia-Pacific region.
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