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Politics & Law

China benefits from Obama’s missed trip, U.S. credibility suffers


U.S. President Barack Obama holds a news conference about the federal government shutdown in the briefing room of the White House in Washington

U.S. President Barack Obama holds a news conference about the federal government shutdown in the briefing room of the White House in Washington

President Barack Obama said on Tuesday that China had probably taken advantage of his absence from a summit in Asia this week and he warned that the government shutdown and fiscal debate were hurting U.S. credibility abroad.

Obama last week cancelled a trip to Indonesia and Brunei, opting to stay home and manage the U.S. government shutdown instead of joining other world leaders at international summits being held there.

A week after the shutdown started, Republicans and Democrats are still at an impasse over how to reopen the government and raise the U.S. debt ceiling before an October 17 deadline.

At a news conference on Tuesday, Obama said he should have been able to make the trip to help advance a trade agreement and present a counterweight to China.

“I’m sure the Chinese don’t mind that I’m not there right now,” he said. “There are areas where we have differences and they can present their point of view and not get as much push back as if I were there.”

Obama’s cancellation of the trip, which was also to include stops in Malaysia and the Philippines, has raised doubts about his administration’s vaunted pivot to Asia, which was aimed at reinvigoration U.S. military and economic influence in the region while balancing a rising Beijing.

Secretary of State John Kerry attended in Obama’s place.

Chinese President Xi Jinping was in Indonesia announcing a raft of trade deals worth $30 billion when U.S. officials announced Obama would be a no-show.

Obama had hoped to advance talks for a trade pact known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, during the Asia trip. Talks over the pact involve 12 nations and aim to establish a free-trade bloc that would stretch from Vietnam to Chile to Japan.

The United States expressed hope on Tuesday it could seal the pact by the end of the year despite resistance from some countries and Obama’s absence from the regional summit.

“It didn’t help that I wasn’t there to make sure that we went ahead and closed a trade deal that would open up markets and create jobs for the United States, and make sure that countries were trading fairly with us in the most dynamic, fastest-growing market in the world,” Obama said at the White House. “I should have been there.”

‘NOT SHOWING UP TO MY OWN PARTY’

Obama attends summits around the world every year, and U.S. officials prepare for them for weeks. The president’s emphasis on attending regional summits in Asia was designed to put muscle behind his promise the United States would remain a Pacific power.

“The irony is our teams probably do more to organise a lot of these multilateral forums and set the agenda than anybody. I mean, we end up being engaged much more than China, for example, in setting the agenda and moving this stuff forward,” Obama said.

“It’s almost like me … not showing up to my own party. I think it creates a sense of concern on the part of other leaders.”

Since 2011, China has consolidated its position as the largest trade partner with most Asian countries.

It is also the top holder of U.S. debt, adding further pressure to the United States to avoid a default.

Obama sought to assure international partners that the United States would pay its bills and service its debt, but he cautioned that the ability to raise the U.S. borrowing limit lay in the hands of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives and its leader, John Boehner.

Obama lamented the fact that repeated budget crises in the United States were hurting its reputation abroad.

“Whenever we do these things, it hurts our credibility around the world. It makes it look like we don’t have our act together. And that’s not something we should welcome,” he said.

“If we deal with this the way we should, then folks around the world will attribute this to the usual messy process of American democracy, but it doesn’t do lasting damage.”

Source: Reuters “Obama: China benefits from missed trip, U.S. credibility suffers”
 
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About chankaiyee2

Author of the book "Tiananmen's Tremendous Achievements" about how with the help of Tiananmen Protests, talented scholars with moral integrity seized power in the Party and state and brought prosperity to China. The second edition of the book will be published within a few days to mark the 25th anniversary of Tiananmen Protests All the parts in the first edition remain in the second edition with a few changes due to information available later and better understanding. There are also some changes for improvements of style. The new parts are Chapters 12-19 on events in China after the first edition was published: The fierce power struggle for succession between reformists and conservatives; Xi Jinping winning all elders’ support during his mysterious disappearance for 2 weeks in early September, 2012; and Xi Jinping Cyclone. Chan Kai Yee's new book: SPACE ERA STRATEGY: The Way China Beats The US An eye-opening book that tells the truth how the US is losing to China. The US is losing as it adopts the outdated strategy of Air-Sea Battle while China adopts the space era strategy to pursue integrated space and air capabilities: It is losing due to its diplomacy that has given rise to Russian-Chinese alliance. US outdated strategy has enabled China to catch up and surpass the US in key weapons: Hypersonic weapons (HGV) that Pentagon regards as the weapon that will dominate the world in the future. Aerospaceplane in China’s development of space-air bomber that can engage enemy anywhere in the world within an hour and destroy an entire aircraft carrier battle group within minutes. Anti-satellite (ASAT) weapons, anti-ASAT weapons, stealth aircrafts, drones, AEW&C, etc. The book gives detailed descriptions of China’s weapon development based on information mainly from Chinese sources that the author monitors closely. U.S. Must Not Be Beaten by China! China is not a democracy. Its political system cannot prevent the emergence of a despotic leader or stop such a leader when he begins to bring disasters to people. A few decades ago, Mao Zedong, the worst tyrant in world history did emerge and bring disasters to Chinese people. He wanted to fight a nuclear war to replace capitalism with communism but could not bring nuclear holocaust to world people as China was too weak and poor at that time. If a despot like Mao Zedong emerges when China has surpassed the US in military strength, world people will suffer the misery experienced by Chinese people in Mao era. China surpassing the US in GDP is not something to worry about as China has the heavy burden to satisfy its huge population, but China surpassing the US in military strength will be world people’s greatest concern if China remains an autocracy. US people are of much better quality than Chinese people. What they lack is a wise leader to adopt the correct strategy and diplomacy and the creative ways to use its resources in developing its military capabilities. I hope that with the emergence of a great leader, the US can put an end to its decline and remain number one in the world. China, US, space era strategy, air-sea battle, space-air bomber, arms race, weapon development, chan kai yee

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