So far, 100 days into office, Trump appears to have offered an incoherent Asia policy marked by several continuities and discontinuities from the previous administration.
Where North Korea is concerned, neither China nor the United States will achieve security acting separately.
The common thread in U.S. strategy toward Iran, Syria, and North Korea isn’t changing these regimes so much as it is trying to change their behavior. More than likely, they will all remain hostile to U.S. interests.
Increased risk-taking concerning North Korea’s nuclear ambitions could potentially pay off, but there’s a catch.
What are the realistic implications of North Korea's nuclear capability?
U.S. Vice President Pence’s trip to Asia is intended to signal U.S. strength and resolve in the region.
The Trump administration’s willingness to speak out on the North Korea nuclear issue and pressure Beijing on the same topic privately represents a break from the approach of past administrations.
As North Korea develops an array of missiles that could deliver a nuclear weapon to the continental United States, that further complicates the tension over defending U.S. allies in the region.
North Korea’s steady development of nuclear forces raises questions about why Pyongyang used its nuclear program to pursue coercive diplomacy in the past, and when the regime was in the strongest position to leverage this nuclear latency as an instrument of compellence against the United States.
The White House must overcome internal divisions to come up with a comprehensive North Korea policy that incorporates both China and America’s regional allies.