Foreign Policy Interventionists in the Trump Era

Washington Examiner, May 8, 2017

Haters of President Trump are not known for their capacity for self-criticism. Having waged all-out, nasty battles to defeat him last November, they have decided to blame anyone but themselves for their failure. Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton blames Russian hacking and FBI Director James Comey for her electoral loss. The mainstream media, which largely dispensed with any pretense of objectivity in the last election, blames the Trump administration for its hostility toward them.

Other Trump opponents, including right-wing foreign policy professionals who declared Trump unfit for office, are now busy evaluating whether Trump is “normalizing,” or becoming more like them.

To read the entire article, please click HERE.

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Ying Ma Discusses Asia and the U.S. Presidential Race on The John Batchelor Show

The John Batchelor Show, February 17, 2016

Ying Ma appeared on The John Batchelor Show to discuss the Ben Carson for President 2016 Campaign, the current foreign policy debate in the U.S. presidential race and China’s recent installation of air-to-surface missiles on Woody Island in the South China Sea.

To listen to the program, please click HERE. (The interview begins at 10:20.)

Making Sense of China’s Confucius Institutes

The National Interest (Online), August 4, 2015

–By Ying Ma

Inside a modern lecture hall at The George Washington University (GW), a well-respected guest lecturer from China addressed me and the other women in his audience as “female comrades.”

I nearly spat out my tea.

It was a lazy April Saturday afternoon in Washington, DC. I had come to GW to attend a symposium sponsored by the university’s Confucius Institute, a Chinese language and cultural center. Meant to be a vehicle for exporting China’s soft power, Confucius Institutes—funded by Beijing and numbering over four hundred—have sprung up around the world during the past decade.

To read this piece in its entirety, please click HERE.

How to Save U.S.-China Ties

NationalInterest.org, June 17, 2015

–By Ying Ma

China’s large-scale construction of artificial islands in the hotly disputed waters of the South China Sea has led many in Washington to call for a tougher stance against Beijing. While China no doubt bears much responsibility for pursuing murky and ambitious territorial claims with aggressive actions, contending with China’s rise also requires a lot more than just getting tough.

During the course of the Obama administration, Beijing has reacted negatively not just to the administration’s gestures of goodwill but also to its more confrontational actions and rhetoric. A look back at the missteps early in the Obama administration would offer a useful guide to prescribing future action. The China Challenge: Shaping the Choices of a Rising Power, a new book by noted China scholar Thomas Christensen, provides precisely such a guide.

To read the entire piece, please click HERE

Washington Needs to Press Japan on History

WSJ.com, April 27, 2015

–Column by Ying Ma

During Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to Washington, D.C. this week to discuss trade and security issues and address a joint session of Congress, his penchant for whitewashing his country’s World War II history will be closely scrutinized.

Already, a bipartisan group of Congressmen have called on Mr. Abe to “squarely face history.” In a letter last week to Japanese Ambassador to the United States Kenichiro Sasae, 25 members of the House of Representatives urged the Japanese leader to use his upcoming visit to “formally reaffirm and validate” past apologies issued by Japan for its wartime aggression.

However, many others in Congress are either unfamiliar with Japan’s historical amnesia or happy to gloss over it themselves. Those who care about the U.S.’s moral leadership and interests in Asia should urge Mr. Abe to get right with history.

To read the entire column, please click HERE. 

Former World Bank President Criticizes U.S. Handling of New China-Led Infrastructure Bank

WSJ.com, March 19, 2015

–Commentary by Ying Ma

In the past week, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Italy have all announced plans to join the new China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). European participation in the new financial institution has materialized despite strong objections from the Obama administration, which sees the AIIB as China’s vehicle for creating a rival to the U.S.-led World Bank.

Is the AIIB merely a thinly veiled Chinese attack on the international financial architecture created by the United States and its allies after World War II? What does European enthusiasm for the AIIB signify for the global strategic competition shaping up between the U.S. and China?

Robert Zoellick, former president of the World Bank and former U.S. Trade Representative and Deputy Secretary of State under George W. Bush, says there is certainly a risk that the new bank could end up being a vehicle for Chinese influence but also calls the Obama administration’s approach “mistaken both on policy and on execution.”

To read the entire column, please click HERE

Hints of Nuance in Coming GOP Presidential Race

WSJ.com, March 13, 2015

–Commentary by Ying Ma

China announced a robust 10.1% increase to its military budget at the opening of the country’s annual legislative session in Beijing last week, signaling that it has no intention of reversing efforts to better defend its interests in the Pacific. Meanwhile, at another major political meeting near Washington D.C. – last month’s Conservative Political Action Conference – Republican presidential hopefuls barely mentioned China or Asia at all.

Are GOP candidates for the 2016 presidential race going to make the mistake of ignoring China’s importance as a foreign policy challenge for the U.S.?

Hardly. In fact, the 2016 U.S. presidential race on the Republican side is shaping up to be one where the major candidates are likely to bring real policy gravitas, not just caricatures and jingoism, to discussions about U.S. policy toward China and Asia.

To read entire column, please click HERE.