A true rebalancing to Asia is neither possible, given the state of today's U.S. military, nor likely to be sustainable if planned defense cuts are not reversed. The reality is that the United States cannot rebalance on the cheap.
Since World War II, a key element of America’s grand strategy has been its worldwide network of strategic allies and partners. The network has provided the United States an invaluable global presence, enhanced deterrence against adversaries and, when called upon, provided men and materiel necessary to fight wars.
Will the election of Prime Minister Narendra Modi last month with the strongest mandate of any Indian leader in 30 years jumpstart much-needed reforms? The answer will help determine whether India begins to fulfill its vaunted potential as a U.S. strategic partner in Asia and beyond.
The peril today is hardly that President Obama is in danger of “leaning forward” too far. Quite the opposite. The danger today is that he has ignored the lesson of the Truman years that, absent American military strength, dangers will grow -- not recede.
Unlike the term "smart power," "soft power" is a useful concept for policymakers to retain in their statecraft toolkits. For various reasons, however, soft power employment by Japan, China, and the United States has been less useful than hoped. Improving receptivity to American soft power in East Asia will require renewed diplomatic, military, and trade efforts.
Security concerns in the Asia-Pacific are on the rise. Tensions over territorial disputes have spiked across the region. China is menacing its neighbors. North Korea continues to pursue a dangerous nuclear weapons capability. The United States has announced a pivot to Asia, but defense budget cuts and challenges elsewhere in the world may undermine the president's promises to America's allies.
In this AEI Program on American Citizenship event, award-winning author Tom Sileo will discuss with AEI’s Gary Schmitt the friendship and heroism of Travis Manion and Brendan Looney as recounted in Sileo’s new coauthored book, “Brothers Forever” (Da Capo Press, 2014).