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Editorial: Deterrence, dialogue without hostility key to US diplomacy in Asia

During his trip to Japan and South Korea, U.S. President Joe Biden will, in addition to meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and others, participate in a summit meeting in Tokyo of the "Quad" group involving Japan, the United States, Australia and India.

    It's a valuable chance for leaders of major democracies responsible for the stability of the Indo-Pacific region to gather as the world becomes less stable due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

    To prevent such a tragedy from happening in Asia, it is essential to think from a broad perspective, and frankly exchange opinions and coordinate policies. For the United States, it is important to reconsider Asian diplomacy from a new perspective based on sudden changes in international affairs.

    Lessons can be learned from the U.S. failure to deter the Russian invasion.

    Russia was warned in advance that a military attack would be countered with economic sanctions. The fact that it wasn't enough to stop the invasion of Ukraine shows the decline of America's deterrence, which needs to be restored immediately.

    In Asia, China and North Korea are becoming increasingly threatening. All possible measures must be taken to ensure that the balance of power is not disrupted. The U.S. is required to coordinate effective military deployment with its allies. But instead of trying to force another country to cooperate, Washington should look for ways to appease public opinion on both sides.

    On the other hand, the demonstration of leadership by the U.S. in bringing together its allies and friendly nations to push back against Russia can be highly evaluated. Expanding the foothold of cooperation to Southeast Asian and Pacific countries could provide the basis for an area that can prevent infringement of sovereignty by force and deter conflict.

    The reason behind the invasion is Russia's opposition to the eastern expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), an alliance of countries from Europe and North America. While it is important to strengthen deterrence and expand the network of cooperation, showing hostility and excessively provoking another nation will only increase tension and the risk of conflict.

    Former U.S. President Donald Trump tried to develop the Quad group into a strong security framework, raising concerns in China about it becoming Asia's version of NATO. The fact that it caused doubts and misjudgments among the great powers is a grim lesson. In order to avoid a recurrence, Asian diplomacy that puts emphasis on dialogue as well as deterrence is essential.

    The success or failure of Asia's stability depends on whether the U.S. can take the lead in setting common rules for competition and creating an environment in which countries can coexist.

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