From an AP editorial:
WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama came into office talking tough on China. The emerging superpower, he promised, would be treated as a competitor, not coddled as a friend or shunned as an enemy. But that tough stance has all but disappeared.The stern words of his presidential campaign faded almost as soon as Obama settled in at the White House one year ago. During his first year, Obama’s administration postponed a meeting with the Dalai Lama, the Tibetan monk reviled by Beijing, declined to label China a currency manipulator and was cautious in its criticism of China’s human rights record.
Obama’s China policy has been designed to gain concessions from a country crucial to solving global crises. Yet the United States has seen little benefit on many of its pressing problems, including nuclear standoffs with Iran and North Korea and tackling climate change and economic worries.
Obama’s top diplomats urge patience as they work to strengthen what they call the world’s most important, and most complex, relationship.
China has loomed large during Obama’s first year, making room for itself at a crowded foreign policy table that included wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. That will continue.
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