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Why Trump’s Indo-Pacific Concept Cannot Be a Strategy to Counter China
The Trump administration’s concept of the “Indo-Pacific” should be placed in the context of the main strategic aims of his administration: to preserve the world primacy of the US and to prevent a strong China from displacing the US in Asia. The concept was officially presented in December 2017 in National Security Strategy 2017 (NSS 2017) and in the Unclassified Summary of the 2018 National Defense Strategy (NDS 2018) in January 2018. In August 2007, Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe aired the idea in his speech to the Indian Parliament. He then talked about the “confluence of the two seas of the Indian and Pacific Oceans” as “the dynamic coupling as seas of freedom and of prosperity” in the “broader Asia.” On June 26, 2017, the Indo-Pacific was mentioned in the joint statement issued by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Donald Trump after the former’s official visit to the White House. During Trump’s state visit to Japan in early November 2017, he and Abe discussed and used the Indo-Pacific concept.
ANITA INDER SINGH
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