The Trump administration has taken the next step toward fleshing out its approach to China, by releasing the Pentagon’s Indo-Pacific Strategy Report. The 64-page paper deals with a number of regional security issues, but it focuses primarily on how to preserve a congenial climate as an ambitious, autocratic China asserts its growing influence.

Those who are looking for a fresh, definitive answer to this question are going to be disappointed. The main thrusts of the document are familiar; they date back to the Barack Obama years and even before. Where the Indo-Pacific report is more interesting is in highlighting — intentionally and unintentionally — the key challenges the United States has yet to overcome.

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