: Blinken Vows More U.S. Military Might in the Indo-Pacific Region #WorldNEWS JAKARTA, Indonesia — The United States will expand its military and economic relationships with partners in Asia to
Blinken Vows More U.S. Military Might in the Indo-Pacific Region #WorldNEWS
JAKARTA, Indonesia — The United States will expand its military and economic relationships with partners in Asia to push back against China’s increasing assertiveness in the Indo-Pacific, U. S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Tuesday.
Blinken said the Biden administration is committed to maintaining peace and prosperity in the region and will do that by boosting U. S. alliances, forging new relationships and ensuring that the U. S. military maintains “its competitive edge. ”
“Threats are evolving, our security approach has to evolve with them. To do that, we will lean on our greatest strength: our alliances and partnerships,” Blinken said in a speech in Indonesia, outlining the administrations Indo-Pacific plans.
“We’ll adopt a strategy that more closely weaves together all our instruments of national power — diplomacy, military, intelligence — with those of our allies and partners, he said. That will include linking U. S. and Asian defense industries, integrating supply chains and cooperating on technological innovation, he said.
“It’s about reinforcing our strengths so we can keep the peace, as we have done in the region for decades,” he said. He did not elaborate further but the administration made waves earlier this year by agreeing to a pact that will see Australia produce nuclear-powered submarines.
Blinken insisted that the U. S. is not trying to force countries to choose between the United States and China or seeking conflict with China. But he laid out a litany of complaints about “Beijings aggressive actions” from “Northeast Asia to Southeast Asia and from the Mekong River to the Pacific Islands.
Blinken is in Indonesia on the first leg of a week-long, three-nation tour of Southeast Asia that will also take him to Malaysia and Thailand. Countering China’s growing aggressiveness in the region, particularly in the South China Sea, in Hong Kong and against Taiwan is prominent on his agenda.
“Countries across the region want this behavior to change,” he said. “We do too. ”
“We are determined to ensure freedom of navigation in the South China Sea,” he said. “It is also why we have an abiding interest in peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait. ”
Blinken said U. S. “will forge stronger connections” with its five treaty allies in the region — Australia, Japan, the Philippines, South Korea and Thailand — boost ties between them and cultivate a stronger partnership with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, many of whose members feel threatened by China.
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