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What’s the intention of Obama’s visit to Asia?

(People's Daily Online)

08:07, November 22, 2012

From Nov. 18 to Nov. 20, U.S. President Barack Obama visited Thailand, Myanmar and Cambodia, and attended the 4th ASEAN-U.S. Leader’s Meeting and 7th East Asia Summit in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. It is his first diplomatic visit after the reelection, and he has become the first sitting U.S. president to visit Myanmar.

The three-day visit reflects Asian strategies of the Obama administration in the second term, which can be summarized into one focus, dual purposes and three pillars.

One focus refers to that Obama will promote the “rebalance” strategy in Asia during his second term. Southeast Asia is the focus of the Obama administration’s “rebalance” strategy. In other words, the U.S. will devote more political, economic, military, security and strategic resources to Southeast Asia in the course of shifting its strategic focus back to Asia Pacific.

Dual purposes mean that the United States, on the one hand, maintains dominance in Asia Pacific and, on the other hand, benefits from rapid economic development in Asia Pacific. The U.S. has for long been worried that the rise of emerging powers like China will squeeze its strategic room in Asia Pacific, its allies in the region might be alienated and it might be excluded from economic integration of Asia Pacific. Obama’s visit to Asia is designed to achieve the dual purposes mentioned above.

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