Foreign Policy

Think-tank veteran Wang Huning to retain influence despite lack of portfolio

Wang Huning

At first glance, Wang Huning is the biggest loser as the only Politburo member without a portfolio. But the former academic will still be an influential figure as director of the Central Policy Research Office, a think tank he has headed for more than a decade.

Sunday, 17 March, 2013, 5:59am

China looks to Russia, Africa after transition

Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi. Photo: AP

China’s new president will pay a state visit to Russia and three African countries, the foreign minister said Saturday, with Beijing looking to step up diplomacy after a protracted leadership transition.

9 Mar 2013 - 7:45pm

A garbled foreign policy does China no good

Xi Jinping

In mid-November, after being anointed as leader of the Communist Party of China, Xi Jinping met members of the international media and impressed them with his self-confidence and sense of humour. Throughout his address, he said not a word about foreign policy.

13 Feb 2013 - 3:36am 1 comment

The limits of Barack Obama's fancy words

U.S. President Obama speaks at the White House in Washington. Photo: Reuters

According to one of his Republican antagonists, US President Barack Obama's inaugural address this week was one of the finest in recent US history.

But even the finest rhetoric does not easily translate into action, and both the US and the world are pretty much as grubby as when Obama first wooed them with his flights of fancy words four years ago.

26 Jan 2013 - 2:06am

Asia's new scion leaders inherit their nations' pressing problems

Asia's new scion leaders inherit their nations' pressing problems

Plenty of tensions divide northeast Asia: island disputes involving Japan, Korea and China; military tensions between the two Koreas, between China and Japan, and of course, the perennial China-Taiwan face-off as status quo.

31 Dec 2012 - 3:23am

US needs an integrated Asia policy

Chester Bowles, a former US ambassador to India, once called for a single assistant secretary of state to cover the whole of Asia in order to strengthen the US State Department's capacity to think strategically about the region.

10 Dec 2012 - 1:28am

China could see diplomatic revolution under Xi Jinping

China could see diplomatic revolution under Xi Jinping

Xi Jinping is now general secretary of the Communist Party and chairman of the Central Military Commission, giving him supreme authority over China's armed forces. In March, he will become president.

30 Nov 2012 - 2:00am

Clarity and co-operation key to Sino-US ties

Clarity and co-operation is key to strengthening Sino-US ties. Photo: Xinhua

Xi Jinping, China's new Communist Party chief, made his first visit to the US in 1980. He was a 27-year-old junior officer accompanying Geng Biao, then a vice-premier and China's leading military official. Geng had been my host the previous January, when I was the first US defence secretary to visit China, acting as an interlocutor for president Jimmy Carter's administration.

22 Nov 2012 - 3:18am 3 comments

Obama's agenda abroad

Obama, like second-term presidents before him who faced deadlock on issues at home, could turn his focus outwards. Photo: AFP

US President Barack Obama's victory over Mitt Romney is a landmark moment in US politics. He is only the second Democratic president to win re-election since Franklin Roosevelt in 1936, doing so despite sluggish economic growth and comparatively high unemployment.

10 Nov 2012 - 12:56am 1 comment

US must learn how to lead

The debate about US power and purpose glosses over the more important issue - that of leadership.

Any discussion of US foreign policy begins with an understanding and appreciation of American "power" and influence in an evolving and uncertain world. The conversation often starts with the assertion that the US is the "indispensable nation", as President Barack Obama insisted in the candidates' foreign policy debate.

5 Nov 2012 - 2:32am

Greg Torode examines implications for China in US election

Illustration: Adolfo Arranz

There has been a bipartisan cast to US presidential engagement with China since Richard Nixon blazed the trail to Mao Zedong's Beijing 40 years ago. But that bipartisanship extends in a very different way to White House election campaigns.

29 Oct 2012 - 11:25pm

Debate stance on China shows cynicism of two US candidates

Barack Obama and Mitt Romney at their final debate.

It is hard to know which was more hurtful to the "feelings of the Chinese people": that both candidates in yesterday's US presidential debate took such a combative stance towards China, or that they spent so little time doing it.

24 Oct 2012 - 4:01am 4 comments

Ex-diplomat says Sino-Japanese rift part of US agenda

Ukeru Magosaki, left, says US plotted fall of Yukio Hatoyama, centre, and Ichiro Ozawa

A former Japanese diplomat has accused the United States of manipulating Japan since the second world war in order to "eliminate" prime ministers who sought to develop better relations with Beijing.

Ukeru Magosaki, who also served as the head of the Foreign Ministry's Intelligence and Analysis Bureau, has recently written a book that has soared to the top of Japan's bestseller lists.

16 Oct 2012 - 8:02am

Vice-premier for foreign affairs will co-ordinate foreign policy

Wang Huning

China's next leaders need to raise the profile of foreign-policy making in the government hierarchy as the country becomes involved in a broader spectrum of international affairs, analysts say.

14 Oct 2012 - 4:36am

Libya security row rocks Obama campaign

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney beams with delight as he is greeted by a crowd of supporters at a campaign rally in Lancaster, Ohio, on Friday. Photo: AP

The lethal attack on the US diplomatic mission in Libya last month has caused an unexpected casualty.

14 Oct 2012 - 4:03am