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The Debate

The Debate is our home for the best opinions from around Asia. Whether it is negotiating with Iran, responding to North Korean provocations, discussing Japan's looming demographic issues, or considering the new balance of power in the Asia-Pacific, some of the region's leading thinkers offer their take.

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Did Biden’s Taiwan Remarks Represent a US Policy Change?
August 24, 2021

Did Biden’s Taiwan Remarks Represent a US Policy Change?

By Gerrit van der Wees
“Strategic ambiguity” is not a policy; it is a tactic. The difference matters.
Climate Change Is a Test for Asia’s Tech Titans
August 23, 2021

Climate Change Is a Test for Asia’s Tech Titans

By Xueying Wu
As extreme weather intensifies, companies like Samsung, Toshiba, and Alibaba must commit to renewable energy.

In Biden’s ‘America First’ Lite, Allies and Partners Come Second
August 23, 2021

In Biden’s ‘America First’ Lite, Allies and Partners Come Second

By William Choong
After the fall of Kabul, there will be an element of doubt surrounding U.S. commitments in the Indo-Pacific.

The Myth of a Sustainable Stalemate in Afghanistan
August 20, 2021

The Myth of a Sustainable Stalemate in Afghanistan

By Gil Barndollar
Biden's choice was indeed between withdrawal and escalation. There never was a sustainable stalemate that could have been maintained.

How Papua New Guinea Can Eliminate Vector-Borne Diseases
August 20, 2021

How Papua New Guinea Can Eliminate Vector-Borne Diseases

By Sarthak Das, Simon Bland, and Mobumo Kiromat
PNG is one of the Asia-Pacific countries most severely affected by mosquito-borne diseases.
Myanmar’s Non-Government Education Sector Needs Urgent Help
August 19, 2021

Myanmar’s Non-Government Education Sector Needs Urgent Help

By Perry Q. Wood
There is an urgent need for foreign governments to help ensure that a generation of Myanmar youth is not lost to the country's political turmoil.

Afghanistan Fiasco Does Not Destroy US Credibility in Asia-Pacific
August 18, 2021

Afghanistan Fiasco Does Not Destroy US Credibility in Asia-Pacific

By Denny Roy
While the disaster unfolding in Afghanistan will have many negative consequences, it will not by itself cause the end of U.S. strategic pre-eminence in the Asia-Pacific region.
Bangladesh’s ‘Fake News’ Law Is Used to Stifle Dissent
August 18, 2021

Bangladesh’s ‘Fake News’ Law Is Used to Stifle Dissent

By Saad Hammadi
Bangladesh’s crackdown on dissent tests the human rights commitment of all states.

What the Fall of Afghanistan Means for Taiwan
August 17, 2021

What the Fall of Afghanistan Means for Taiwan

By Vincent Chao
Afghanistan and Taiwan have few parallels, but Taipei can still draw some important lessons from the tragic fall of Kabul.

The Last Hearing of a Khmer Rouge Leader
August 17, 2021

The Last Hearing of a Khmer Rouge Leader

By Youk Chhang
The impending closure of the Khmer Rouge Tribunal must be recognized as the beginning of a new chapter in Cambodia’s search for justice.

Was Vietnam’s Chinese COVID-19 Vaccine Debacle Just a Stunt?
August 13, 2021

Was Vietnam’s Chinese COVID-19 Vaccine Debacle Just a Stunt?

By Le Dong Hai Nguyen
There is a strong case to be made that the Vietnamese government leveraged ingrained anti-Chinese sentiment to boost vaccine uptake.
ASEAN Can’t Do Much More About Myanmar’s Crisis
August 09, 2021

ASEAN Can’t Do Much More About Myanmar’s Crisis

By Adam Leong Kok Wey
The Southeast Asian bloc shouldn't be expected to take on more than it is capable of or willing to do.

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