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11:02AM

Kerry not a fan of Asian "pivot"? I smell a plot!

WAPO story:  China is happy with John Kerry because it thinks he'll drop the 'pivot to Asia'

Obviously, you can be a strategic thinker and disagree with the transparency of the Obama administration's containment strategy on China.  You can also believe there's just as much - or more - work to be done right now in the Middle East (Spring, Iran's nukes, Palestine, Syria).

But this is a weird piece, because I don't think the Chinese are dumb enough to believe that Kerry can "drop" the pivot if he so chooses.

But the positive Chinese press pours in, apparently.

From the piece:

Kerry himself sort of predicted this when he said of the pivot during his confirmation hearings, “You know, the Chinese take a look at that and say, what’s the United States doing? They trying to circle us? What’s going on?”

The author Max Fisher's judgment is a bit simplistic:  if Kerry is just trying to make nice with China, then fine, but if he's serious and actually focuses on the Middle East, then China benefits!

Sounds to me like WAPO is trying to "out" Kerry on China in this sophomoric piece.  People on that paper have too much time on their hands and too little non-inside-the-Beltway stuff to cover.  WAPO is truly a small-town newspaper.  Always has been, always will.

Reader Comments (1)

Well, when Obama was announcing that he was the first Pacific-Asian US-President, we already had our doubts. Can he ignore the Greater Middle East, does he just want to ignore it as a remaining fact? When the "fracking discussion"started, there were even more people who said: The USA don´t need the Greater Middle East anymore, leaves it to Europe and will concentrate on China.
Looks like this is not the case. However Obama, Biden´s and Kerry´s move to a Transatlantic Freetrade Area (TAFTA) could be understood as a antichinese move to bring a trade bloc against the upcoming Asian Freetrade Area in motion as the Transatlantic Partnership Programme (TPP) isn´t working. However, AirseaBattle is already in place and ASB concentrates its efforts on two majorwar theaters: Iran and China.Therefore I don´t think that Kerry is shifting away from the Asian pivot, but is focusing on the economic base (TAFTA) and the Greater Middle East. However: If Japan and China get in a conflict over Senkaku/Diaoyutai islands or the other Asian countries over the South Chinese sea islands, I think that the USA military would intervene. The US military is still the strongest military in this 21st century which can start two wars--against Iran and China-at the same time, but doesn´t want that scenario, even if it planning for it in Airsea Battle.If such a conflict would occur, the USA had to win thsi war--otherwise they would be militarilly and econonically totally bancrupt.I hope that the Chinese don´t perceive Kerry`s tactical shift towards the Greater Middle East as an invitation for adventorous Chinese foreign policy. They would see an USA wchich would shift its pivot again very rapidly.

March 4, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterRalf Ostner

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