After President Obama's cancelled trip to Asia this month, some analysts have posited that the U.S. pivot to Asia is dead. Not so fast, argues Elizabeth Economy. This assessment represents a fundamental misunderstanding of U.S. policy, and the United States still has multiple interests in the Asia Pacific.
Relations between China and Pakistan are indeed growing, but must be considered in a wider context to understand their potential implications for the United States and India.
Close Sino-Pakistani relations are nothing new. Especially with respect to military and nuclear ties, Beijing and Islamabad have have been friendly since the 1960s. In recent years, bilateral trade and investment have increased. Looking to the future, China's expanding influence in Central Asia and its interest in overland access to the Arabian Sea could motivate even stronger links with Pakistan.
"For the last fiftyyears, Washington has assumed the scientific dominance of the US. This assumption is now in question as scientific capabilities become more widely distributed," especially to China, writes Adam Segal.
"Despite all the similarities to the 1990s Asian financial crisis, and the worries from investors, analysts, and international institutions, a repeat of the 1990s is very unlikely," writes Joshua Kurlantzick.
Sheila A. Smith argues that since the succession of Kim Jong-un, Tokyo has put greater emphasis on ensuring it is prepared militarily for a more unpredictable North Korea and strengthening support for UNSC sanctions on DPRK proliferation.
Authors: Yanzhong Huang, Patricia Moser, and Susann Roth Asian Development Bank
Yanzhong Huang, Patricia Moser, and Susann Roth discuss the key health challenges in the post-2015 development agenda for Asia and the Pacific, a highly populated, diverse region of countries with different health needs and priorities.
Asked by Brian Luckett, from Morgan State University
There is little prospect Tibet will achieve full statehood in the foreseeable future. Apart from preservation of its own power, China's Communist Party's highest imperative is the territorial integrity of the country. It is determined to keep Tibet a part of China and thus far the world community has acquiesced in China's claim.
In a section of this week's "Saturday Essay" in the Wall Street Journal, Elizabeth Economy says that China has been critical of the United States' Syria policy, hoping to highlight U.S. weakness and signal the onset of a power transition in the international system. However, she argues, China's observations about U.S. indecisiveness and Russian leadership only serve to emphasize China's inability to find its own diplomatic legs.
"Criminal justice has been the weakest link of China's legal system, which, despite constitutional and legislative protections of the right to defence, has in practice rarely allowed defendants adequate opportunity to question prosecution witnesses and rebut their claims," writes Jerome A. Cohen, with respect to Bo Xilai's trial.
Sheila A. Smith argues that despite some regional concerns about Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's geopolitical ambitions, his diplomatic vision to date looks more like a return to Japan's much vaunted economic diplomacy.
While in Islamabad, Secretary of State John Kerry announced that the U.S.-Pakistan strategic dialogue would be resumed in order to foster "deeper, broader and more comprehensive partnership." These fine words will need a lot of hard work to back them up. It would help if President Obama's administration also came to the table with a big new idea to re-energize its difficult relationship with Islamabad. An ambitious and forward-looking way to frame Washington's agenda with Islamabad would be to consider it within the context of Pakistan's role in the broader U.S. "rebalancing" to Asia.