Open Forum

The months of March and April saw a revival of energetic exchanges on international affairs after the dulling effect of the past year of pandemic and the dark shadow of Trumpism. Biden reenergized bilateral and multilateral diplomacy with the Quad as one of the key themes in the quest for understanding new dynamism in the Indo-Pacific. India drew attention as critical to the prospects for the Quad. So too did Japan, as the main US partner in setting a direction for the Indo-Pacific and the first country whose leader went to Washington to meet Biden. While the self-imposed isolation of North Korea lowered interest in it and Moon Jae-in was relegated to waiting for the Biden administration’s policy review for the North, South Korea drew notice as US officials visited and talk swirled about its relationships with Japan, China, and the Quad.

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