November 21, 2011

Obama Pushes New Asia Ties

NUSA DUA, Indonesia—President Barack Obama, after almost three years dominated by domestic wrangling, attempted on a just-completed trip across Asia to reset his foreign-policy agenda with an Eastern bent.

Mr. Obama accomplished much of what he set out to do in security, economic and political matters, though he is still a long way from fulfilling the potential for a new alignment with Asia he pursued. And his need to fight for re-election at home seems almost certain to distract his attention from the task.

For almost three years, Mr. Obama has focused on a sagging economy and fights with Republicans on the home front. When international affairs pushed to the top of his agenda, the issues usually were Iraq, Afghanistan and Iran, and events outside his control, such as the Arab world uprisings.

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