Asia in 2016: China

Asia in 2016: ChinaThe Chinese government had much to be irritated about in 2016, both at home from its gyrating stock markets, and abroad from an unfavorable international ruling on its South China Sea expansion and attacks on its economic policy from Donald Trump, now President-elect of the United States. The Chinese government rejected an international tribunal’s ruling…

China Can’t Back Down

China Can’t Back DownThe seeds of what is going on in Hong Kong today, with tear gas being used on local protesters apparently for the first time in history and student heads being busted by police, were sown in 1997 with the promulgation of the territory’s Basic Law, the foundation document that is supposed to govern Hong Kong…

A Chinese Author Takes On China

A Chinese Author Takes On ChinaHow much did Joe Chung anger the Hong Kong and Beijing establishment, and what were the results? Chung was one of the most controversial authors on the popular but now-defunct House News, a Hong Kong-based news website and content aggregator founded by former radio personality Tony Tsoi and others to cover covers politics, business, lifestyle,…

China Gets it Wrong

China Gets it WrongChina is in the unique position of laying claim to three regions directly outside its borders, at least according to the people who live there, whose citizens mostly would like nothing more than to have China leave them alone.  They are Hong Kong, Taiwan and Tibet, at least the Tibet that existed prior to the…

Washington’s Stuttering Foreign Policy

Washington’s Stuttering Foreign PolicyUS foreign policy is exhibiting an advanced case of ADHD – Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. It bodes ill for those in Asia who welcomed the “tilt” towards the region which was supposed to follow the US withdrawal from Iraq and the run-down of its involvement in Afghanistan. Instead of focusing on its alliances and role…

Michelle Obama’s China Visit a Disappointment

Michelle Obama’s China Visit a DisappointmentAmerican First Lady Michelle Obama’s “good-will” tour with her family in China last week wasn’t good for the Chinese: a number of people (some aren’t even dissidents) were detained, kidnapped, assaulted or put under house arrest. Yet, Mrs. Obama self-censored herself on the topic of human rights during the entire trip and seemed blind and…

Opinion: US Global Power Not Waning

Opinion: US Global Power Not WaningThe dominant narrative about last month’s fiscal melodrama in Washington emphasizes how political paralysis is quickening America’s strategic decline.  In this case, however, the conventional wisdom has it wrong: The episode actually underscores the continuing advantages the United States enjoys in the global power sweepstakes, especially vis-à-vis China. To be sure, plenty of illustrious commentators…