Asia and the United States: The Challenges Ahead

Courtesy Reuters

The extraordinary events in the Pacific-Asian region over the past year pose two overarching challenges for U.S. foreign policy: how to respond to the crisis in Asia's Leninist societies, and how to confront the problems arising from the accelerating economic interdependence of the region's market economies. In addition, there is the question of gauging the basic political trends throughout the Pacific-Asian region-in particular, whether a recent general movement toward greater political openness is likely to endure.

The question of how to respond to the diverse developments within the Leninist world has assumed critical importance. For the first time since the Bolshevik Revolution, a peaceful evolution beyond Leninism seems under way. It is important to note, however, that while such a prospect appears close at hand in most East European societies, as one travels further east the possibilities lessen for a near-term establishment of parliamentary democracy. The political fault line

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