The Brief, November 2017

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November 13, 2017 
Can The U.S. Improve Relations with Asia?

U.S. President Donald Trump embarked on his first official trek to Asia, a trip Johns Hopkins SAIS experts said will be inundated with challenges, but some opportunities to renew U.S. global influence.

Ahead of the meeting between Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping, China Studies Director David M. Lampton told The New York Times that U.S.-China relations have a tumultuous history, and the "outcome of this clash of national ambitions will be one of the great, perhaps perilous stories of the next several decades." Read more

Senior Fellow of American Foreign Policy David Rothkopf wrote in The Los Angeles Times that Trump’s China visit is the most important stop on the trip because he is "hoping for not only progress on North Korea and trade issues, but for a little of Xi’s momentum, power and prestige to rub off on him." Read more

Director of the Foreign Policy Institute and Associate Director of China Studies Carla Freeman told China Global Television Network that Trump met with the Chinese president to seek "promises or assurances from Xi Jinping that China is prepared to work with the U.S." on addressing issues in the region and opportunities for economic partnerships. Watch more

Despite U.S. withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, SAIS Europe Director Michael G. Plummer co-wrote in The Hill that while Trump is attending the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit in Vietnam, he should reaffirm U.S. commitment to the Asia Pacific and "leave no doubt that U.S. companies will remain competitive in this marketplace." Read more

Director of the Edwin O. Reischauer Center for East Asian Studies and Director of Asia Programs Kent E. Calder wrote in Kyodo News that in addition to the geopolitical problem of the South China Sea, "what will concern (Trump) most will be the North Korean threat and how to meet it." Read more

U.S.-Korea Institute Senior Fellow Joel Wit co-wrote in The New York Times that Trump could reduce tensions with North Korea and sway Chinese support by "stating clearly that diplomatic engagement with Pyongyang is his administration’s first choice and that the United States is ready to proceed down this road." Read more

The Brief highlights Johns Hopkins SAIS expertise on current events and is produced monthly by the Office of Marketing, Communications, and Strategic Initiatives. Like The Brief? Share it on Facebook and Twitter, forward to a friend, or subscribe.