Let’s be clear about it. America’s strengths in Asia remain formidable. Of course, it’s worrisome that with the exception of the Philippines and Vietnam, no one else wants to stand tall and challenge China to be a more responsible global leader. Sure, Mr. Harrington is spot on in his razor sharp analysis. China has wrongly assumed that their dynamic economy and bullish investments in ASEAN infrastructure will win friends and thereby foster bilateral and multilateral arrangements. While China’s rhetoric is about peace and prosperity for all, its rising military influence reflected in their reclamations offers a conundrum especially for Washington, Vietnam, the Philippines, Japan and Taiwan. As a journalist my focus has been largely focused on the systematic degradation of the South China Sea, once so rich in biodiversity and now exploited from fisheries, overfishing, destruction of coral reefs all done in the name of sovereignty claims and maritime boundary disputes.
What the sea tells us is that China urgently needs to take the lead in protecting the marine resources by designating a marine protected area in the Spratlys and dismantling their military structures. The fish are migratory and so by their very nature they are shared stocks to feed an increasing population growth. So maybe ASEAN leaders will rise to their feet and force China to create this MPA network now before it is too late.
China’s success in the next five years will depend largely on how well the government manages the tensions underlying its complex agenda. In particular, China’s leaders will need to balance a muscular Communist Party, setting standards and protecting the public interest, with an empowered market, driving the economy into the future.
The preference of some countries to isolate themselves within their borders is anachronistic and self-defeating, but it would be a serious mistake for others, fearing contagion, to respond by imposing strict isolation. Even in states that have succumbed to reductionist discourses, much of the population has not.
When the Bretton Woods Agreement was hashed out in 1944, it was agreed that countries with current-account deficits should be able to limit temporarily purchases of goods from countries running surpluses. In the ensuing 73 years, the so-called "scarce-currency clause" has been largely forgotten; but it may be time to bring it back.
Republican leaders have a choice: they can either continue to collaborate with President Donald Trump, thereby courting disaster, or they can renounce him, finally putting their country’s democracy ahead of loyalty to their party tribe. They are hardly the first politicians to face such a decision.
As the global economic recovery strengthens, and central banks move to raise interest rates, they need to improve their communication with the general public. To do that, they should follow the trail blazed by Donald Trump.
With talks on the UK's withdrawal from the EU stalled, negotiators should shift to the temporary “transition” Prime Minister Theresa May officially requested last month. Above all, the negotiators should focus immediately on the British budget contributions that will be required to make an orderly transition possible.
In recent decades, as President Vladimir Putin has entrenched his authority, Russia has seemed to be moving backward socially and economically. But while the Kremlin knows that it must reverse this trajectory, genuine reform would be incompatible with the kleptocratic character of Putin’s regime.
As a part of their efforts to roll back the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act, congressional Republicans have approved a measure that would have courts, rather than regulators, oversee megabank bankruptcies. It is now up to the Trump administration to decide if it wants to set the stage for a repeat of the Lehman Brothers collapse in 2008.