In this collective effort to define the Reagan Administration's policy towards Asia, the best essay is by Norman Levin, an analyst for Rand. He argues that the current policy is not a dramatic departure from but rather "an evolutionary extension" of the last two years of the Carter Administration. To strengthen U.S. positions in the region, there has been a renewed commitment to treaty allies, an expansion of U.S. military assistance, an effort to build a loose coalition of friendly powers in the region, a significant expansion of the U.S. posture in the Persian Gulf and Southwest Asia, and, finally, a major naval buildup.
Although Levin concludes that the Reagan policy in Asia has had a number of positive effects, he cautions that the Administration has yet to devise a strategy for moderating superpower competition and "ultimately coming to grips with the Soviet Union as an Asian power."
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