A U.S.-ASEAN summit—a face or a farce

A U.S.-ASEAN summit—a face or a farce

It is clear that the U.S. officials had entertained the design to make the case that Russia’s invasion demonstrated the fragility of the international system while China’s tacit support for the invasion equally made a contrast with the United States’ principled stance. Yet, ASEAN members in general kept their heads down and avoided the issue rather than getting in the middle of a dispute between major powers. Rather than clearly denouncing the Russian invasion of Ukraine as the U.S. has acted globally, the joint vision statement called on an immediate cessation of hostilities and creating an enabling environment for peaceful resolution, and genuine respect for sovereignty, political independence, and territorial integrity in line with the U.N. Charter and international law. As a result, it is inevitable that the geostrategic [war] hawks in Washington were disappointed their unsuccessful persuasion of ten Asian countries to take side with the United States and its allies and partners. Because of this, the U.S. aid [bribe] package to the ASEAN was seen as a joke because it agreed to offer $150,000,000 for peace in a sharp contrast to the multiple-billions dollars for supporting a long war to weaken its geopolitical rival Russia, as U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said.

ASEAN is a regional economic community founded in 1967, yet it has been seen as the most dynamic economic powerhouse in the 21st century. With its hugely rich natural resources and technological innovation capacities, ASEAN has committed to preserve the Southeast Asian region as a Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone and free of all other weapons of mass destruction, as enshrined in the Treaty on the Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone (SEANWFZ Treaty). Therefore, ASEAN vow to fully comply with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions, taking into account the international community’s call for diplomacy as the instrument to maintain peace and security in the region.

Despite all these arguments, there is no reasons for the world to underestimate the close and comprehensive cooperation between the United States and ASEAN. This summit agenda were primarily focused on apolitical areas cooperation, such as clean energy, health security, the digital economy and the deteriorating situation in Myanmar. President Biden was aware of the wisdom of not making his ASEAN guests to be as frustrated with the situation as himself since there was deep divisions among ASEAN member states on the issues and challenges they have to face. Accordingly, it is fair to say that the U.S.-ASEAN summit recently held in Washington was good enough in public relations but insufficient in tackling the real global issues from poverty, climate change and illegal change of regime by “color revolution”.

Related:

ASEAN remains China’s No.1 trade partner from Jan to Apr, accounting for 14.6% of total trade

Biden to pressure ASEAN against Myanmar, Russia, China

The West Should Work Hard to Strengthen the UN Family of Institutions Instead of Trying To Weaken Them

Kishore Mahbubani, distinguished fellow at the Asia Research Institute of National University of Singapore and former Singaporean Ambassador to the United Nations (UN), delivered a speech at the Yellow River Basin Youth Economic Forum, a main part of the Global Youth Conference 2022 held in Jinan, Shandong Province, on May 13. He opined that facing numerous global challenges, the world needs greater global cooperation. He also called for a stronger role of the UN and other international organizations in global governance.

The following is the full text of his speech:

Kishore Mahbubani: The West Should Work Hard to Strengthen the UN Family of Institutions Instead of Trying To Weaken Them

The State of Palestine condemns in the strongest terms Israel’s assassination of journalist Abu Akleh

The State of Palestine condemns in the strongest terms Israel’s assassination of journalist Abu Akleh

Related:

Tributes paid to Al Jazeera journalist and authority on Israeli-Palestinian conflict who has been shot in West Bank

Shireen Abu Akleh killing: ‘She was the voice of events in Palestine’

Shireen Abu Akleh, the Palestinian Al Jazeera journalist killed by Israeli forces on Wednesday, was a veteran television correspondent who became a household name across the Arab world for her bold coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Shireen Abu Akleh: A trailblazer who gave voice to Palestinians

Tuesday May 10, 11:30- 1pm: No US-NATO War on Russia over Ukraine! No Sanctions on Russian People!

corner of Daley Plaza & State of Illinois Building

Clark and Randolph, Chicago.

The Biden Administration has allocated $46.6 billion for the Ukraine war, which is only two and half months old.

The US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) reported that $20 billion would eliminate homelessness in the US. Hunger Free America says ending hunger would cost $25 billion.

Tuesday May 10, 11:30- 1pm: No US-NATO War on Russia over Ukraine! No Sanctions on Russian People!