Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. 2019 From A Fourth Turning Perspective - James_Quinn
2.Beware the Young Stocks Bear Market! - Zeal_LLC
3.Safe Havens are Surging. What this Means for Stocks 2019 - Troy_Bombardia
4.Most Popular Financial Markets Analysis of 2018 - Trump and BrExit Chaos Dominate - Nadeem_Walayat
5.January 2019 Financial Markets Analysis and Forecasts - Nadeem_Walayat
6.Silver Price Trend Analysis 2019 - Nadeem_Walayat
7.Why 90% of Traders Lose - Nadeem_Walayat
8.What to do With Your Money in a Stocks Bear Market - Stephen_McBride
9.Stock Market What to Expect in the First 3~5 Months of 2019 - Chris_Vermeulen
10.China, Global Economy has Tipped over: The Surging Dollar and the Rallying Yen - FXCOT
Last 7 days
If You Get These 3 Things Right, You’ll Never Have to Worry About Money - 22nd Mar 19
March 2019 Cryptocurrency Technical Analysis - 22nd Mar 19
Turkey Tourist Fakes Market Bargains Haggling Top Tips - 22nd Mar 19
Next Recession: Finding A 48% Yield Amid The Ruins - 22nd Mar 19
Your Future Stock Returns Might Unpleasantly Surprise You - 22nd Mar 19
Fed Acknowledges “Recession Risks”. Run for the Hills! - 22nd Mar 19
Will Bridging Loans Grow in Demand and Usage in 2019? - 22nd Mar 19
Does Fed Know Something Gold Investors Do Not Know? - 21st Mar 19
Gold …Some Confirmations to Watch For - 21st Mar 19
UKIP No Longer About BrExit, Becomes BNP 2.0, Muslim Hate Party - 21st Mar 19
A Message to the Gold Bulls: Relying on the CoT Gives You A False Sense of Security - 20th Mar 19
The Secret to Funding a Green New Deal - 20th Mar 19
Vietnam, Part I: Colonialism and National Liberation - 20th Mar 19
Will the Fed Cut its Interest Rate Forecast, Pushing Gold Higher? - 20th Mar 19
Dow Jones Stock Market Topping Pattern - 20th Mar 19
Gold Stocks Outperform Gold but Not Stocks - 20th Mar 19
Here’s What You’re Not Hearing About the US - China Trade War - 20th Mar 19
US Overdosing on Debt - 19th Mar 19
Looking at the Economic Winter Season Ahead - 19th Mar 19
Will the Stock Market Crash Like 1937? - 19th Mar 19
Stock Market VIX Volaility Analysis - 19th Mar 19
FREE Access to Stock and Finanacial Markets Trading Analysis Worth $1229! - 19th Mar 19
US Stock Markets Price Anomaly Setup Continues - 19th Mar 19
Gold Price Confirmation of the Warning - 18th Mar 19
Split Stock Market Warning - 18th Mar 19
Stock Market Trend Analysis 2019 - Video - 18th Mar 19
Best Precious Metals Investment and Trades for 2019 - 18th Mar 19
Hurdles for Gold Stocks - 18th Mar 19
Pento: Coming QE & Low Rates Will Be ‘Rocket Fuel for Gold’ - 18th Mar 19
"This is for Tommy Robinson" Shouts Knife Wielding White Supremacist Terrorist in London - 18th Mar 19
This Is How You Create the Biggest Credit Bubble in History - 17th Mar 19
Crude Oil Bulls - For Whom the Bell Tolls - 17th Mar 19
Gold Mining Stocks Fundamentals - 17th Mar 19
Why Buy a Land Rover - Range Rover vs Huge Tree Branch Falling on its Roof - 17th Mar 19
UKIP Urged to Change Name to BNP 2.0 So BrExit Party Can Fight a 2nd EU Referendum - 17th Mar 19
Tommy Robinson Looks Set to Become New UKIP Leader - 16th Mar 19
Gold Final Warning: Here Are the Stunning Implications of Plunging Gold Price - 16th Mar 19
Towards the End of a Stocks Bull Market, Short term Timing Becomes Difficult - 16th Mar 19
UKIP Brexit Facebook Groups Reveling in the New Zealand Terror Attacks Blaming Muslim Victims - 16th Mar 19
Gold – US Dollar vs US Dollar Index - 16th Mar 19
Islamophobic Hate Preachers Tommy Robinson and Katie Hopkins have Killed UKIP and Brexit - 16th Mar 19
Countdown to The Precious Metals Gold and Silver Breakout Rally - 15th Mar 19
Shale Oil Splutters: Brent on Track for $70 Target $100 in 2020 - 15th Mar 19
Setting up a Business Just Got Easier - 15th Mar 19
Stock Market Elliott Wave Analysis Trend Forercast - Video - 15th Mar 19
Gold Warning - Here Are the Stunning Implications of Plunging Gold Price - Part 1 - 15th Mar 19
UK Weather SHOCK - Trees Dropping Branches onto Cars in Stormy Winds - Sheffield - 15th Mar 19
Best Time to Trade Forex - 15th Mar 19
Why the Green New Deal Will Send Uranium Price Through the Roof - 14th Mar 19
S&P 500's New Medium-Term High, but Will Stock Market Uptrend Continue? - 14th Mar 19
US Conservatism - 14th Mar 19
Gold in the Age of High-speed Electronic Trading - 14th Mar 19
Britain's Demographic Time Bomb Has Gone Off! - 14th Mar 19
Why Walmart Will Crush Amazon - 14th Mar 19
2019 Economic Predictions - 14th Mar 19
Tax Avoidance Bills Sent to Thousands of Workers - 14th Mar 19

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Stock Market Trend Forecast March to September 2019

Trump’s Indecision about North Korea May Cost Him Allies in Asia Pacific

Politics / GeoPolitics Oct 26, 2017 - 10:32 AM GMT

By: John_Mauldin

Politics

BY GEORGE FRIEDMAN AND JACOB L. SHAPIRO : China’s 19th National Congress of the Communist Party is getting a lot of attention right now. In the opening ceremony, President Xi Jinping heralded the beginning of a new era in China. Surprisingly, he was also very honest about the inadequacy of his first term.

Although the congress will continue into this week, most of the major events have already taken place.


Much of Asia had been in a holding pattern in the lead-up to the congress. But now that holding pattern is over, we can look ahead to some key events in the region that will have a global impact.

Japan in a Tough Spot

In Japan, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s coalition decisively won another term in elections over the weekend. It is a remarkable political comeback for Abe.

He has overcome some of the scandals dogging his regime and won another mandate, allowing him to continue his economic reforms and take a controversial step in revisiting its pacifist constitution. (I wrote about Japan’s geopolitical realities and its strategy in my exclusive ebook, The World Explained in Maps, which you can download here.)

Abe can thank North Korea in part for his political resurgence.

North Korea’s missiles over Japan and the inability to halt Pyongyang’s nuclear program have given Abe new life. But the important issue here is not so much Abe as it is a potential shift in Japan’s overall posture.

China admitted some of its weaknesses during the National Congress. In spite of that, Japan cannot bet that China will remain weak, no matter how difficult China’s problems are.

Further, the inability of the US to control the situation in North Korea raises hard questions for Japan. A country shielded by a US security guarantee can afford to be a pacifist nation. But a country highly dependent on raw material imports and threatened by an adversary that may soon become a nuclear power cannot.

Add to this the fact that Japan conquered much of the Asian coast in the early 20th century and treated its colonial subjects as inferiors. This leaves Japan in a tough spot.

Japan has no shortage of enemies, and it can’t count on the US to prevent North Korea from acquiring a nuclear weapon. Japan will have to fend for itself. Meanwhile, North Korea remains as recalcitrant as ever.

In the past week, Pyongyang has threatened imminent nuclear war against the United States and vowed to “mercilessly smash the war frenzy of the US and South Korean puppet warmongers” in response to US-South Korean naval drills.

This rhetoric is typical for the North Koreans. But there are some statements related to the North Korean crisis that shouldn’t be dismissed.

The CIA director recently said that North Korea was on the verge of possessing nuclear weapons capable of striking the US—and that President Donald Trump would not allow that to happen.

US Commitment to Asia

Rising tension in Asia is the reason Trump will travel to five Asian countries—Japan, South Korea, China, Vietnam, and the Philippines—in early November. It’s a fitting trip for the one-year anniversary of Trump’s election.

Trump’s visits to Japan, South Korea, and the Philippines are to demonstrate that the US is still committed to Asia, and not only because of North Korea. But photo ops won’t be enough to prove this commitment.

Japan and South Korea will want to know what the US plans to do about Pyongyang. Meanwhile, the Philippines wants to know whether it can still depend on the US to protect its interests—or whether it should cut a deal with China now while it has all the leverage.

Trump’s trip to Vietnam is proof of a fundamental premise in geopolitics: Individual leaders don’t matter nearly as much as most people think they do. A country’s foreign policy will change very little when a new president takes office.

President Barack Obama lifted an arms embargo against Vietnam during a visit to Hanoi. Now, President Trump is set to take his own trip to the communist country. The two nations may have an uneasiness toward each other because of the Vietnam War, but they share an interest in containing China. And this is more important than ideology and their historical animosity.

Trump won’t eat noodles with Anthony Bourdain on the streets of Hanoi, as his predecessor did. But like Obama, he will look to strengthen the bilateral relationship to isolate China in the region as much as possible.

This leads us, of course, to China.

It remains unclear what Trump plans to do when he meets the Chinese president on his home turf. When they last met in April, Xi agreed to help the US contain North Korea in return for the Trump administration’s backing off on its China trade policies.

Six months later, there has been no tangible progress on North Korea. More hawkish, anti-China voices in Trump’s ear have been sidelined. And now, according to Politico, the White House is reportedly conducting a comprehensive, bottom-up review of its China policy.

Rumors are swirling over what could result from Trump’s trip to China. But the only things that are certain are that the US is not getting what it wants out of China, and China cannot give the US what it wants.

Trump’s meeting with Xi won’t solve these issues. Until the US decides what it will do about North Korea, its policy in Asia will remain hostage to the regime in Pyongyang.

This plays into China’s hands and leaves other US partners looking for alternatives.

Grab George Friedman's Exclusive eBook, The World Explained in Maps

The World Explained in Maps reveals the panorama of geopolitical landscapes influencing today's governments and global financial systems. Don't miss this chance to prepare for the year ahead with the straight facts about every major country’s and region's current geopolitical climate. You won't find political rhetoric or media hype here.

The World Explained in Maps is an essential guide for every investor as 2017 takes shape. Get your copy now—free!

John Mauldin Archive

© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules