El giro asiático de Estados Unidos no parece tener eje

NUEVA DELHI – El primer viaje al extranjero que hará el presidente Barack Obama después de obtener su segundo mandato electoral será a Asia, lo que destaca el nuevo papel central de esta región respecto de la economía y la seguridad de los Estados Unidos. Pero la gira asiática de Obama también recalca la importancia de una duda que genera la política estadounidense para la región: ¿el “giro” de Estados Unidos hacia Asia adquirirá contenido estratégico concreto o será solamente una continuación de políticas antiguas bajo un nuevo barniz retórico?

Estados Unidos no dejó pasar la ocasión de capitalizar las inquietudes que causa en la región la cada vez más enérgica autoafirmación de China. Es así que ha reforzado sus lazos militares con sus antiguos aliados asiáticos, a la vez que comienza a tejer lazos con otros amigos nuevos. Pero el deslumbramiento provocado por el regreso de Estados Unidos al centro de la escena en Asia no deja ver los grandes obstáculos que supone para el país seguir siendo el principal sostén de la región en materia de seguridad de cara a las ambiciones estratégicas de China.

Uno de esos obstáculos es la pérdida de poder relativo de Estados Unidos, proceso cuya detención demanda una amplia renovación interna, con consolidación fiscal incluida. Pero la necesidad de recortar el gasto público deja abierta la posibilidad de que Estados Unidos no sea capaz de financiar una reorientación de sus prioridades militares hacia la región de Asia y el Pacífico o, peor aún, que se vea obligado a replegarse allí.

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