November 9th, 2014
12:23 AM ET

Asia key to Obama's foreign policy legacy

Watch "Fareed Zakaria GPS," Sundays at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. ET on CNN

By Fareed Zakaria

Obama's biggest foreign policy initiative is powerful and intelligent – the pivot to Asia.

The greatest threat to global peace and prosperity over the next decades comes not from a band of assassins in Syria but from the rise of China and the manner in which that will reshape the geopolitics of Asia and the world. If Washington can provide balance and reassurance in Asia, it will help ensure that the continent does not become the flash point for a new Cold War.

But the Asia pivot remains more rhetoric than reality. Having promised a larger U.S. military presence in the Philippines, Singapore and Australia, there is little evidence of any of this on the ground...

...I know the world looks messy and the administration is now on the defensive. But recall what the world looked like when Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger were conducting foreign policy.

America was losing a war in Asia in which it had deployed half a million troops. The Soviet Union was on the march. Domestic opposition and troubles were mounting. Nixon and Kissinger had to initiate a major retreat but, as Robert Zoellick has pointed out, they combined this with a series of bold, positive, assertive moves.

Watch the video for the full Take or read the WaPo column

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Topics: Fareed's Take • GPS Show

soundoff (295 Responses)
  1. Sky High

    We excel in picking up needless fights and losing them. That appears to be our foreign policy, much to our chagrin. There can be oriental Asia policy as is inferred herein without addressing the South Asian region which is on the brink of a nuclear war.

    November 9, 2014 at 4:55 am | Reply
    • Sky High

      To be read "There can be NO oriental Asian ..." My apologies.

      November 9, 2014 at 4:57 am | Reply
  2. rupert

    Blue Saffron is a pig

    November 9, 2014 at 5:03 am | Reply
    • ShiningStar

      @Blue Saffron is a legend to many. An intellectual and foreign policy expert.

      November 9, 2014 at 5:16 am | Reply
      • stuart

        Shinningstar is a fat slob

        November 9, 2014 at 5:28 am |
  3. rupert

    Sky high is a pig too.

    November 9, 2014 at 5:05 am | Reply
  4. rupert

    "Asian policy as is inferred without addressing the South Asian region which is on the brink of a nuclear war."
    Bulllllllllllhi t!!!!!!

    November 9, 2014 at 5:09 am | Reply
  5. Igor

    Well said Sky High. India, a country with a communist skin; undermining American interests in Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria; 1.2 million Indian Army hiding in trenches scared of Talibans and so forth. When you go back to the hill next week, Dear American Congressmen, please spend your time in introducing a bill condemning the atrocities in Indian Occupied Kashmir and genocide being undertaken there by the Indian Army. Why have you been so quiet on this pressing issue when millions of women and children are being murdered by India?

    November 9, 2014 at 5:11 am | Reply
    • rupert

      Igor. You sir, are a pork face from the neck, up.

      November 9, 2014 at 5:31 am | Reply
  6. rupert

    Sky high, get your little tiffin hindu Pakistani a.s.s and eat horsey poop!
    "Brink of nuclear war," what a clown.

    November 9, 2014 at 5:13 am | Reply
  7. ShiningStar

    We need to understand that India has an unmanageable large population mired in poverty and we are spinning our wheels trying to feed it. It is also too big of a geographical unit to govern. Again, we saw how a few teenage talibans were able to invade it with a few BB guns. And that says a lot... in a negative way not only for a large unmanageable country like India but also for USA which is trying to prop it up against China. Besides, Americans cannot afford to look like losers in the midst of a terror war which has lasted for over ten years now

    November 9, 2014 at 5:13 am | Reply
  8. stuart

    Well rupert, Sky High is uneducated and has no common sense like his autistic make believe friend, sky high. Aka, blue saffron, the famous butt-face.

    November 9, 2014 at 5:16 am | Reply
  9. rupert

    Oh. Ok. And what about shinningstar?

    November 9, 2014 at 5:17 am | Reply
  10. stuart

    Shinningstar,another disgusting mutant creature of blue saffron eats Pakistani human feces.

    November 9, 2014 at 5:20 am | Reply
  11. rupert

    Oh. Ok. Is blue saffron happy in life?

    November 9, 2014 at 5:21 am | Reply
  12. stuart

    He eats turtle sh it for breakfast.
    He eats horse sh it for lunch.
    He eats cat sh it for dinner.
    Yes. Blue Saffron is very happy because he doesn't realize that he is a sh it head.

    November 9, 2014 at 5:25 am | Reply
  13. stuart

    Aint that right B/S?

    November 9, 2014 at 5:26 am | Reply
  14. Gustav

    I quote a comparison of oriental Asia and South Asia.

    Comparing the progress of China with India always amazes me. About same number of people but different results. Chinese raise their kids to be entrepreneurs while Indian hindus as t hugs. Just a cultural difference I suppose. Different DNA.

    China 10% GDP...... India 2%
    China 38 Gold medals.... India 0 (2012 olympics)

    We must insert this parameter into our foreign policy model.

    November 9, 2014 at 5:31 am | Reply
  15. Greg

    Gustav. U suk horse butt

    November 9, 2014 at 5:33 am | Reply
  16. Greg

    Blue Saffron lives in a pig pen with pigs

    November 9, 2014 at 5:35 am | Reply
  17. Gustav

    Stuart rupert greg..... How is the weather in India? You guys still rayping over there?

    November 9, 2014 at 5:37 am | Reply
  18. Blue Saffron

    @Gustave. No. But I am.

    November 9, 2014 at 5:56 am | Reply
  19. Gustav

    I am a pig from Arkansas

    November 9, 2014 at 5:58 am | Reply
  20. rupert

    Gustav and Blue Saffron. I appreciate your honesty guys. I am going to church now to pray to Jesus.

    November 9, 2014 at 6:00 am | Reply
  21. rupert

    Hey! Where did schitzo go?

    November 9, 2014 at 7:41 am | Reply
  22. Chinese Hindoo Bhai Bhai


    111,383 killed
    11,047 wounded
    11,696 missing
    123,968 captured
    131,544 ran away to Bhutan and still are hiding scared from Chinese.

    November 9, 2014 at 7:42 am | Reply
  23. rupert

    So? Who asked u? Schitzo.

    November 9, 2014 at 7:50 am | Reply
  24. rupert

    U are mental. U call yourself all these weird names then by tonight or tomorrow you post as Blue Saffron and actually act normal.
    Real mental schizophrenic case. How intriguing. We have a true, genuine schitzo roaming around these blogs.

    November 9, 2014 at 7:55 am | Reply
  25. rupert

    No schitzo. China is not in pursuit of 131,544 Indians. China is too busy trying to be a super power like the U.S.A. and they are actually prospering from a Free Enterprise system.

    November 9, 2014 at 8:00 am | Reply
  26. Chinese Hindoo Bhai Bhai

    There have been 3 wars between China and India. Sino-Indian War of 1962, the Chola War in 1967, and the 1987 Sino-Indian War.
    In all these three wars India was comprehensively defeated and the Indian Army surrendered. In two of these wars the Indian Army was commanded by hindu generals. The last war had a Sikh general. Needless to say they were all cowards and surrendered to Chinese.

    November 9, 2014 at 9:17 am | Reply
  27. rupert

    Hey as.shole. I monitor these blogs.
    What u say is bull. Now go to golden coral. Over eat at the buffet. Then puke and die, bi tch.

    November 9, 2014 at 9:21 am | Reply
  28. Chinese Hindoo Bhai Bhai

    It is a shame that China is kicking us Indians around like a football. Now they want to kick us out of the Chinese sea. Pakistan is already referring to the Indian ocean as the Pakistan Ocean. Americans have made us babysitters to Afghanistan and Bangladesh cleaning up and changing their diapers.. Maybe this fits our cowardly national character better.

    November 9, 2014 at 9:24 am | Reply
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