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Kamala’s ‘America is Back!’ tour will flop as US doesn't have a strategy for Southeast Asia beyond sabre-rattling. China does

8 15 1

As the Biden administration consolidates its foreign policy, it has predictably turned its attention towards Southeast Asia in a bid to counter China. Last week, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin visited Vietnam, the Philippines, and Singapore in a bid to shore up military ties between Washington and the region. Now, Kamala Harris is also set to visit two of these countries (Vietnam and Singapore), where the reported main message will be ‘America is Back!’ – a sentiment which will no doubt go down a storm in Hanoi.

The vice president’s aim with this trip is to call out China over its maritime claims in the South China Sea. This comes amid America's attempts to militarize the region through coordinating with other powers such as Japan, the UK, and Australia, whilst also sailing aircraft carriers through the sensitive waters in a bid to project American power. It comes as Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi attends the ASEAN-China ministerial meeting, where he has warned against “external interference” by “extraterritorial powers” in the region. No prizes her for guessing who he was talking about.

The US says that it’s “back” to Southeast Asian countries, but the reality is this: apart from sabre rattling and pushing opposition to China, the United States actually doesn't have a strategy for the region, and Beijing does. In many ways, the legacy of recent US policies in this area of the world has been self-defeating, to say the least, and the political space that Biden has to turn it around is limited. In other words, it's essentially still Trump’s ‘America........

© RT.com

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