US won’t turn away from Asia

The Myanmar Times - - World -

THE United States will not end up turn­ing away from Asia in com­ing years, a top US mil­i­tary of­fi­cial said, as Don­ald Trump’s White House win kept re­gional al­lies fret­ting.

The US pres­i­dent-elect sounded fairly iso­la­tion­ist on the cam­paign trail; in con­trast, Pres­i­dent Barack Obama, who grew up partly in In­done­sia, made the re­gion a pri­or­ity.

Mr Trump an­noyed Ja­pan by say­ing it was not pay­ing enough in the US-Ja­panese mil­i­tary re­la­tion­ship. He even sug­gested it might be­come a nu­clear power in or­der to not rely on the United States to de­fend it.

“It would be in­ap­pro­pri­ate for me to spec­u­late on a pol­icy ini­tia­tive of the next ad­min­is­tra­tion or cer­tainly for me to wade in pol­i­tics,” said Ad­mi­ral Harry Har­ris, com­man­der of US Pa­cific Com­mand.

“That said, I have no doubt that we will con­tinue our stead­fast com­mit­ment to our al­lies and part­ners in the Indo Asia Pa­cific.

“I want to ease any concerns from our part­ners and our po­ten­tial ad­ver­saries: the Indo Asia Pa­cific is as im­por­tant to Amer­ica as it ever has been. I be­lieve the US will re­main the se­cu­rity part­ner of choice in the re­gion well into the fu­ture,” said Mr Har­ris.

US of­fi­cials in­clud­ing Mr Obama him­self have rushed to re­as­sure al­lies on the heels of Mr Trump’s Novem­ber 8 elec­tion win. –

Photo: EPA

Ad­mi­ral Harry Har­ris be­lieves the US will stay true to al­lies in the re­gion.

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