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tv   CSIS Forum on U.S.- South Korea Relations - Panel 3  CSPAN  June 25, 2019 12:53am-2:01am EDT

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on the u.s. south korean relations from the center for strategic and international studies. in this portion of panelists talk about the regional politics and military strategy that affects u.s. south korea relations and security concerns in the asia-pacific region. >> we saved the best for last. today we've covered north korea and this panel we are going to go beyond and widen the discussion. there's there is a lot to discus obviously. for china is playing out in the context of u.s. china mistrust and deteriorating trade relations. the visit to north korea was
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expected but still noteworthy in terms of timing right for the g. 20. many feared as a signal that beijing still have critical leverage and perhaps he was signaling to president trump that maybe he should modulate the trade for accordingly if he wants to see progress in the negotiations. and obviously there was president trump's recent visit to tokyo and the desire to meet. he's now met with him five tim times. president trump five times and putin warns. then we obviously have the g. 20 later this weekend of this
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much-anticipated. just last friday the administration's added five embassies and further restricting the access to technology and further complicating efforts to reach a trade deal with high tensions between the u.s. and china so all of this going on and we couldn't ask for a more distant this panel to discuss these and other issues. no one on the panel really needs an introduction so i will make them very brief so we can start the discussion. we have on my left ambassador campbell, chairman and ceo of the asia group and chairman of the center for the new american security, former assistant secretary of state for the east asia-pacific affairs where he is widely accredited as a key architect.
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we have left of him professor of international relations at the university and prior to working at smu he worked as assistant professor hong kong university science and technology and was a fellow at brookings, business professor. left of him doctor christianson of international affairs and director of china and the world program at columbia university iran derived from princeton university and served as a deputy assistant secretary of state for east asia affairs. then w we get the professor of f science at the university and the center of japan studies. i think i'm going to get each panelist opening remarks for five minutes or so to set the
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scene for us. >> you summarized very nicely recent events and they want to pay respects to our friend victor and congratulations for ten years of a program here will have the chance to commemorate e it later and we are grateful for the opportunities together a. it's often said in almost every opening statement about global politics that we are living in a strategic period you could say anytime the last 20, 25 years but i think if you look at the situation today, there is more strategic uncertainty around primarily the american world and than we have seen even perhaps near the close of the cold war and i would suggest a good way to think about it as three members, 704320.
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if you think about the last 70 years it's been largely about a substantial american endeavor to create and support a global operating system that is an intricate web of strategic commitments, alliance, formulations, support for the peaceful resolution of disputes, a framework that has been very good for asia. we have seen the longest period of prosperity and commitment on the part of the united states to the peace and stability and remarkable growth throughout the region as a whole. that period and framework has been very good for us and is coming under challenge as never before by two nations in particular and the first is perhaps understandable. china would like to adapt parts
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of the framework. parts have been good for china experts said china would like to adapt and adjust towards fulfilling and supporting the arrival of the global stage. that's perhaps not as big of a surprise. i think the bigger surprise is the other main challenge that has come from the united states. many questions across the political spectrum of president trump and his team but also on american politics and questions about the deployed american engagement, over ambitious american pursuits, trade etc.. i encourage all of you to take a look at this poll that just came out from the center for american progress that makes very clear that this once very robust group of american supporters from the so-called liberal international order has dwindled very substantially and i think what we all have to recognize is some
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of those believe that some of us share our interest each particularly the united states as never before and even if president trump is no longer president i think his biggest contribution will be to raise questions about america's role in the world so that is extraordinarily important and i think we are only at the beginning stages of thinking about what comes next and those who would suggest an election coultobe about resurrecting thes quo i don't think they are paying attention to what's going on inside the united states and the second number, 40, some of this i see around the room was in beijing couple of weeks ago for the china development forum and at the same time chinese friends invited for the last time the architects of engagement between the united states and china to celebrate the 40 yea 40 year period of ent in the united states and china.
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>> is that the us china relationship requires deeper questioning. that doesn't mean some horrible new war but what is at the top of the list. and simultaneously at the same
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time, there is a recognition that has been deeply engaged. rarely has a great power gone on this kind of detour. remarkable loss of money, lif money, life, prestige for almost nothing. as a quick negative it has undermined in a broader recognition for what we have invested in this time any one of those developments with execution of american foreign policy the fact that they are happening together suggest as we think about the korean peninsula issues questioning
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of american foreign-policy pursuits perhaps is never been greater. at the end of the cold war i knew where they generally would come down. i find myself going into meetings having no idea where people are likely to come out on certain issues. and with those full tribal patterns with the strategic debates. before we go forward we need to recognize the level of uncertainty that has never been greater. >> and to set the stage for us with the policies for china the opportunities toward china. >> talking about my classmate
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at columbia university, he is a role model for a young professional because he shows you can be incredibly successful and a leader without being bossy without being aggressive. he really is a great example for what you can achieve. who asked me about alliances and china the fact that we are in a strategic competition and people forget about with those alliances and partnerships that there is no other realm the united states has a bigger need for a potential rival than alliances and partnerships.
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and those security policies are played out in a way of northeast and southeast asia to reduce our ability to draw upon our allies making it easier with those coalitions and those relationships. that trade war is painful for those closest partners and i was in singapore a few days ago and to drop precipitously. also in malaysia to be very concerned and china into t eight. there is a lot of confusion and concern. and also that narrative of the economic policy pretty much
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all of that policy is predatory. nobody is more concerned of those negative aspects than china's neighbors. so for example in malaysia they were concerned there was corruption with those previous governments to express publicly but at the same time to get infrastructure and then one of the united states says they are not criticizing beijing. it's very good to have diplomacy you allow yourself to be preyed upon. and to see that opportunity to build infrastructure to worry
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about the negative but what what is only starting to happen they sustain that narrative in a way that builds those relationships. and with northeast asia and japan in the trade war and japan has moved into that gap. investment in china has gone up. and lastly with north korea and iran the united states has to accept what president xi was trying to drive home there is no way to buy maximum pressure that to some degree with chinese buying they are the partner both. that will complicate us china
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relationship. to place that maximum economic pressure on iran and we don't have that much additional room to sanction ourselves. and then with the chinese government to pressure because we have t8 which is a multifaceted issue but the one that really got people's attention was just a few days ago is one that seemed different then not allowing t8 into the infrastructure. to keep that from developing into the high-tech area and
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that seems much more like a cold war position. that is my basic take on that the next is between economic policy to turn into a basic concert i really do believe we are more powerful than china. i say they are plenty powerful enough that we don't dismiss their power but i think the united states is much more powerful than one of the reasons is our alliance and partnership and we cannot forget those direct policies have an impact in ways that work in the interest on - - against the interest of the strategic competitor. >> how do you change the landscape of the region
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collects and perhaps no longer so dependable. and the regional dynamics. >> when i got out of grade school the early nineties people use to talk about orderly society, global migration. and so the nationstates are coming back very strong.
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and with that issue with dad ability everywhere but basically us and china competition has begun and in that form of coercion. in that exclusivity question
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the pressure has been felt by many countries in the region and also with this particular dilemma. and in 2011. access to the strategic dilemma. and to join aa id and with that commemoration and whether or not in 2016 and then with
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the indo pacific region that will only increase down the road. but first of all it is a possibility. there may be some new images and with the flyby country or maybe even less but last year
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there was a cool encounter. >> so clearly. in that competition with washington. >> let's move away from chip loan - - tried and talk about japan. south korea relationship obviously still currently one of the most troubled and
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without cooperation then hampering into china. let's talk about that relationship. >>. >> so we can have these areas. and it is a political problem.
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it is this area of korea and japan and with that understanding. in to be preoccupied but of course but basically there is that understanding. but it is a compromise. the second is through coordination. and it isn't that much easier.
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but did you say we cannot have that. and then we could some coordination. >> and with those two economies.
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so with all of these differences at bangkok but and the court and without coordination from 1985. but why because some people for example in the contribution but then only to
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focus on the package. >> so with the leadership and with these tremendous areas that it is strong. okay.
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that it is strong. okay. that it is strong. okay. >> can i ask about president trump and the foreign policy. and the region is seeing him. how do they think about iran last week rex does that reversal and then to undermine the credibility and with these
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threats. so how is the foreign-policy cracks and then with the uncertainty just adding more. >> and then to make judgments on these issues. and to make assessments but my assumption would be and to be somewhat transactional.
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and that with those relationships more generally to make him look strong. and to feel relatively confident and then to look at those trade issues with china but they are very substantial with japan, real threats. and has not focused at all on india with the trump administration has done and was very worrisome. and then always to be anxious
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and then if anybody uses the wrong lens to say the president is not prepared to follow through. that could be dangerous leading the region into an unpredictable phase ahead. but i talked to some japanese friends who feel they understand the president has a good relationship and i wish them good luck. [laughter] but if this goes on very much longer they try to develop that nuance strategy developing that independent capability and despite what
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any country is saying up front they are trying really hard and over the longer term the assessment whether they are the strongest and unquestioned leader are in the midst of a hurtling duck line i can find people across that spectrum. >> china does not need to be an equal of the united states that there is too much emphasis in my fielder in the political world that they have
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to be the same height as to pose a challenge but they are much weaker actors and that was certainly more powerful than any of those so we do have certain advantages over china but i think we could harm those relationships by treating those bilateral relationships i was in south korea couple weeks ago and i also heard there that this choice of some elements they don't want to make that choice they don't need to from our perspective and by asking that we weaken our relations the biggest most direct impact the
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question about iraq. i don't know what they try to resolve that there is a lot of relief in the region but the second reason is they don't want more distractions and they don't want united states to be tied down. there is just incredible uncertainty. and then there is uncertainty in korea.
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president trump was popular and he seems like he is too soft and i worry about that because my expectation because people don't make those predictions. mine is the jump administration will become disappointed with north korea. that i don't know what is left because in the progressive are disappointed. and they are already disappointed and now here we are with entitlement that is extremely important.
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>> it was a really bad idea but it is something that should just be normal. >> you say there is no way for our national pressure for that buy-in do they follow the visit quick. >> it will be building infrastructure. and something that is very dangerous i think the trump administration did a very good job to get kim jung-un to the table but you had to do two things at once which are opposite and a lot of us were
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concerned there was going to be a conflict on the korean peninsula paragraph the same time they didn't care about the north korean regime. and it's very difficult to do those two things at once and in different enough to with that nuclear weapon but to declare victory there is no maximum pressure. because i don't think the president can create that combination of incredible threats in the future like he did. the trump administration is doing this right.
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>> so with the south china sea and teeeight to talk about this consensus forming it is a multi prong strategy in china with the congressional backing so with the democratic president. so where is south korea cracks to be honest with all of these issues and to take action that
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it is not actively involved in with the south china sea. can they continually hedge? and with that uncertainty. >> about know about japan or taiwan but it is a concept of international relations it could be a midpoint and issue based of political support.
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and those of their own priority. many countries that experience it so many of these countries have very high in china and where to apply pressure. but south korea, i don't know.
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just to deal with the dilemma. >> i will ask just one more question. if we talk about hong kong and taiwan. does that have a negative impact do these galvanized?
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>> i've said hong kong is a losing bet for beijing. and then across the political spectrum to say this has nothing to do with us. as people define sovereignty differently like the republic of china. and then it matters a lot. it is only a losing proposition for beijing.
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but if they handled it poorly then you can't trust beijing. but that dpp coalition in the early 2020. and in january emphasizing to systems that was never popular in taiwan. and with that extradition and then another reminder to people in taiwan and with the
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electoral community. so i think they're probably in a better place. >> it would be hard to underestimate what substantial setback have been for president xi it's very easy for us to underestimate the impact talk to friends inside the us government several of them have been surprised and the american role there and i would say that what we are seeing that president xi decision to go to north korea
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isn't so much by president trump but as a way to usurp your stature you have to find someplace you can go. that's only place you can go that would accommodate that is north korea. it is entirely likely with a very substantial set of setback setbacks. >> but many hong kong people and is now hong kong area and
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20 years ago and of those methods no change today hong kong and tomorrow taiwan. >>. >> and to forecast how it is conducting the policy in 2020. with the national assembly
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having the election and it is happening in november and with that national assembly to impact the foreign policy decision-making east asia pacific region as a whole. >> i am a short term university. it with the issues in recent years and in venezuela with
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between china and russia. >> and as a former diplomat to lock up a couple million muslims in the us and a couple hundred of their mosques. the theory around the world would be beyond comprehension and embassies would burn. tourist would be at risk every single day. i wonder why china gets a pass. they are creating the next generation of muslim terrorists. and how to construct the camps.
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and then to say it is a quarter of mankind. you have lost legitimacy. why is that so hard to realize quick. >>. >> the blue house and white house connections. >> because then if they can get that clearance.
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because then if they can get that clearance. [inaudible] >> so to the question on china and russia, the dynamic between beijing and moscow has been in play and with that period of time from what we have focused on and i am
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struck by the foreign policy of the region as well. so one of the developments we have seen in the last week is a recognition on the japanese side finally between japan and russia would not come to terms but fundamentally our interest is between japan and russia engagement through russia is not through china and frankly the desires. we should try to find ways of japan and russia can find a way to work together in the asia-pacific region and that forms in such a way in the different spheres makes it
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more fundamental. so deep down the future would be enough to cause hesitation in moscow but that's not the case but go that animosity of distrust and animus is so great it overcomes any concern in the immediate and near-term. >> it has been my impression for a long time what brings them together is mutual the version of that bipartisan of regime change and coming together but even within that there is a difference between beijing and moscow. so look at venezuela that the
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united states could intervene politically or militarily or otherwise. that is a bumper sticker diplomacy. so moscow has sidled up to say let us play out the way it'll play out and washington you stay out. moscow is not a fair competitor of the united states. but it is revisionist in terms of ideology. but china is a much stronger competitor of the united states but that is part of active foreign-policy. and to answer the question but i was in malaysia and i was
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sitting in a room with seven women and i say why haven't they taken a position? that is a mystery to me. and that goes in all directions to a muslim majority country. the only country that has spoken up is turkey. and my sense is that president aired in one but as a turkish national issue we are in a position to lead response because of our own policy we
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ought to be in that position we are doing that but with a lot less leverage with things like the muslim van. >> in korea had generally speaking all the presenters are more forward-looking so unless something happens
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regarding that issue happening but if that happens i don't think that goes to the national assembly election. >> retired from the ccc p-letter so if we spend the next 19 months with the new administration what is for the foreign-policy state department how long will it take to recover and how much improvement should we expect? [laughter] >> my question is for secretary campbell so talk
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about a question with the us engagement of policy do you believe the us one china policy framework what is the consequence if changed quick. >>. >> good afternoon. approximately an hour ago the state department announced the representative for north korea will travel to seoul korea to meet with the public of cree officials before joining secretary pompeo for the
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president's visit to seoul korea this seems to be an add-on for those that were scheduled to go there i'm happy to listen to anyone's comments why they think this is been added on. >>. >> everyone has a different view on this but there are some very hard lessons for the united states. first is you look at a succession of reasonable bipartisan administration democrat and republican. and you look at the status of those negotiations and then you look at president trump
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and you have found in a lot of circumstances from what they would have anticipated including china and others are in that case so to treat them reasonably responsible in their approach act difficult and unreasonable in the short term there can be potential incomes on the trade front in particular but the other issue is the idea that you see among my democratic colleagues is a democratic leader is elected that there would be an outpouring of gratitude and relief. i don't think that's the case.
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we will be attacked and criticized we went that direction in the first place but then to be saying things more comfortable to keep that of the new administration so they can exert their displeasure. that will be tough for a new administration who will say thank god you are back. maybe a little bit but not as much as we think. i do believe there are elements that will continue. i take no pleasure in that and i think it will be difficult and have a much more profound impact around the world than what we realize now and i think there are deep fundamental rethinking what
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the middle class once in the world to at the new administration does. i'm not sure what will go forward but it will be much more difficult to resurrect a deeply predictable confidence sent interactions so the question of china policy that questions are much more fundamental that us relations with china about technology, policy, trade i don't think that is the fundamental debate i think fundamentally it is the core issues that the economic trade policy. >> i want to say something about the state department. it was my honor to serve for a couple of years with career professionals.
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it was just and incredible experience. and in that security room and to build relationships and to really understand to anchor in the foreign-policy it is extremely damaging. you can have a very smart person even if they are very highly educated but it is very difficult and time-consuming so my colleague and former deputy you can't just replace them. >> so we think about military
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but not enough on foreign service. i don't want to go into election one - - a lecture but us one china policy is not the same thing and in the important way different things could be emphasized with the one china policy the administrations change in that challenge like for example arms sales to say will they fundamentally break out of those broad constraints? i could tell you how that would happen but i don't think that will happen. because i think people would realize it is not in anyone's
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interest it is not in taiwan's interest so i often say everybody in the united states loves taiwan. >> i agree and that is a fantastic institution and real damage has been done but not enough to say it will take 20 or 25 years. we will not have that luxury. there needs to be some really insightful looks at how other institutions are under duress. some of that requires midcareer hires or taking lessons from business and with the military as an example there are certain periods how
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you retain looking at those policies to see what we can do to rebuild the state department as you go forward but it will be very difficult because by nature they take 15 or 20 or 25 years. >> in providing this opportunity but he has been on the fence since it started give him a round of applause. [applause] >> i think we are about to go and celebrate with a reception. thank you for the panel for this excellent discussion. [applause]
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>> before we dismiss you. [inaudible conversations] please stay for the evening reception and presentation. are president and ceo. please don't leave. you're not allowed to leave. [laughter] enjoy some of the food and that will close out the discussions.
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>> stay with us to the end. of course thank you to president lee for the fourth successful strategic forum. please join us in about half an hour. [applause]
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