Middle East Notes and Comment: The Asia Pivot
January 10, 2013
Much of the talk about the U.S. “Pivot to Asia” has one thing wrong: it is not a pivot away from the Middle East. That is not to say that some in the Obama administration don’t wish they could pivot away from the Middle East, or that the U.S. Central Command isn’t exhausted from fighting wars for more than a decade. Both are true. Instead, it is to say that Asia’s ties to the Middle East are growing vigorously, and a U.S. commitment to Asian security necessarily means the United States inherits Asia’s growing interests in the Middle East. The United States cannot pull out of the Middle East. Rather, its increasing engagement with Asia means that it is increasingly getting pulled into the Middle East, although from the other side.