In the post-Cold War and post-Sept. 11, 2001 world, a great deal of attention has been paid to multilateral cooperation in East Asia and to the formation of economic and political cooperation and dialogue mechanisms aimed at creating a sense of East Asian and broader Asia-Pacific community. The United States has been an active partner in some of these community-building efforts and, in recent years (unlike the early 1990s), has been generally supportive of – or at least not actively opposed to – those in which it is not a member. In fact, the Bush administration, despite its (sometimes deserved) reputation for unilateralism elsewhere, has been particularly supportive of East Asian and broader Asia-Pacific multilateralism. This appears to be changing, however, as Washington keeps a cautious eye on the evolution of the ASEAN Plus Three forum (involving the 10 ASEAN States, plus China, Japan, and the Republic of Korea) into an East Asian Summit (EAS).
Issues & Insights Vol. 05 – No. 09
August 15, 2005