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Obama and China's Rise: An Insider's Account of America's Asia Strategy

3.36  ·  Rating details ·  47 ratings  ·  9 reviews
"Future presidents will need to find the right balance in China policy, so as to maintain America's strength and watchfulness but not fall into the classic security dilemma, wherein each side believes that growing capabilities reflect hostile intent and responds by producing that reality. I believe that President Obama struck that balance." --From Obama and China's Rise

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Hardcover, 171 pages
Published April 28th 2012 by Brookings Institution Press (first published February 24th 2012)
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Average rating 3.36  · 
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Aman
Apr 12, 2016 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: obama, china, politics, primary sources
As a supporter of the Obama administration's foreign policy (including with regards to China), broadly speaking, I came into this book hoping to like it. However, it is essentially an administration and especially Obama hagiography (though not brazenly so).

There was very little discussion of grand strategy - something one naturally expects given the title of the book, beyond familiar talking points. The author addresses such criticism in the last chapter - and his point is one I take. Except th
...more
Tobias
Oct 26, 2013 rated it liked it
Just okay. Dry account of Asia policy during the first couple of years of the Obama administration. Not too many revelations - although it confirmed most of my impressions about the administration's attitudes toward Japan. Despite being short, took me months to finish.
Leakhena
Jul 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Written by the top adviser on Asia Policy, this book told the accounts of how the U.S. set foreign policy on Asia during Barack Obama’s first administration.

Jeffrey Bader was already Obama’s admirer even before the election started. He is a senior director for Asian affairs in the National Security Council in first two years.

Just like much other new administration, there were always emphasized on new strategies, making differences by comparing to the previous presidents’ administration.

This book
...more
Ekam
Jun 20, 2019 rated it liked it
Short, fairly easy read. It’s not nearly as groundbreaking or important as the back cover would suggest (then again, books rarely ever are) but it’s a lively, readable walkthrough exploring the Obama admin’s early dealings w China under Hu. Unfortunately not only does Bader’s writing frequently border on hagiography, but he hardly even attempts to consider the areas in which the administration’s policy may have been less than ideal, leaving the book utterly devoid of perspective and reflection. ...more
Mason
Dec 06, 2017 rated it it was ok
The subtitle implies that the reader will get an "Insider's Account of America's Asia Strategy", this is partly correct. Apart from providing a shortlist of the fundamental principles of the Obama administration’s Asia-Pacific strategy, the book does not talk about the administration's strategy -- it just gives an insiders account of what the U.S. was doing to achieve its objectives. So, for instance, it talks about the problem that is created for the administration by the existence of the Dalai ...more
Andrew
Oct 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: china
This book serves as an excellent behind-the-scenes look into the crafting of U.S. foreign policy with China. Bader's account is highly detailed and provides an in-depth back story to many of the events which happened during President Obama's first two years in office. I am using this book as a launching point into a pre-thesis project, and it provides a wonderful historical background that situates me in the heart of U.S.-China literature.
Dyanna
Feb 20, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: foreign-policy
Quick, rosy read about the Obama administration's pivot towards Asia. The book lacks context (I think healthcare came up only twice) and self-criticism. But it is a good review of some of the policy steps taken in Obama's first term.
Talbot Hook
Jan 29, 2013 rated it did not like it
Incredibly boring, and horribly written.
Johnathon
Jul 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: asia, history, politics, china
A concise overview of US policy toward Asia from 2008 to 2012. Easy read if you enjoy foreign policy.
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