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Jess Frampton

​The pivot to nowhere?

Washington announced its “pivot to Asia” 10 years ago, believing that the future of international politics would be defined there. But a perpetual game of whack-a-mole, exemplified most recently in Ukraine, has occupied US foreign policy, making it impossible to “course correct” and counter China’s influence.

Much like Michael Corleone’s efforts to get out of the family business, only to get pulled back in, Washington’s been immersed in its own unsettled affairs rooted in the war on terror (Afghanistan), Donald Trump’s “America First” approach (Iran nuclear negotiations), and the residue of the Cold War (Russia vs Ukraine). These crises have diverted attention and resources away from a China-centric pivot to Asia. However, the war in Ukraine has highlighted America’s need to establish greater leverage over Beijing more than ever.

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