Monday, May 9, 2016

What Do Hillary Clinton's Emails Reveal About Her Asia Policy?

Gary Leigh, The Diplomat

uncaptioned image from article
What can we learn about Hillary Clinton’s past and potential future strategy in the Asia-Pacific from the emails sent during her tenure as Secretary of State? The emails give us a glimpse into some of the turbulent and controversial issues she tackled, be it her own or in the region. Of course, the potentially explosive emails are redacted so we do not necessarily find juicy details like we do with leaked cables, but we can see the finer nuances which go into her Asia strategy itself. ...
Speaking to her potential future strategy, we can expect some degree of predictably due to her tenure as secretary of state. This is in and of itself is not a bad thing for the uncertain times that are ahead in the region, as it makes Clinton’s strategy for Asia less of a gamble. She is certainly well-versed in the art of negotiation. Consider, for example, certain emails that show us the preparations for her diplomatic dealings, as well as the to-and-fro of when to or not to open dialogue, or when to conduct a classic pull-aside. This speaks to nuances of diplomatic tact, and in conjunction with her reading list, is a good sign for acting strategically in the region.
Yet what about advances in conducting diplomacy itself? We know that she was a backer of the utility of the new digital tools of public diplomacy, including “twiplomacy,” in Asia. Moreover, the strategic issues that came into her inbox were not always traditional matters, as we can that her strategy included matters of gender equality and climate change too. ...

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