Wherever you may be, we wish you and those close to you the very best Year of the Rabbit.
U.S. National Security Council, Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific, February 2018
Statement by NSA Robert O'Brien on Jan. 15, 2021.
Today, the White House is publishing the recently declassified United States Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific. For the last 3 years, this document has provided overarching strategic guidance for implementing the 2017 National Security Strategy within the world’s most populous and economically dynamic region. Approved in February 2018 for implementation across Executive Branch departments and agencies, the document is being released to communicate to the American people and to our allies and partners, the enduring commitment of the United States to keeping the Indo-Pacific region free and open long into the future.
The United States is and always has been an Indo-Pacific nation. From our first trading ships that departed for China just eight years after the American Revolution, to establishing our first diplomatic presence in India in 1794, U.S. engagement in the region has been built on trade, cooperation, and shared sacrifice, yielding the peace and prosperity enjoyed across the region today.
The United States Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific (henceforth, the Framework) has served, for the last three years, as the Trump Administration’s overarching strategic guidance for implementing the President’s 2017 National Security Strategy (NSS) within the world’s most populous and economically dynamic region.
The NSS recognizes that the most consequential challenge to the interests of the United States, and those of our allies and partners, is the growing rivalry between free and repressive visions of the future. To realize America’s positive vision for the region, and to address the unprecedented challenges that Indo-Pacific nations face to their sovereignty, prosperity, and peace, in February 2018, President Trump approved the Framework for implementation across Executive Branch departments and agencies. The original document has been declassified and released, to communicate to the American people and to our alliesand partners America’s enduring commitment to this vital region.
The Framework has guided the development of numerous subordinate policy frameworks and campaign plans that have steered the U.S. approach to specific issues of importance to the Indo-Pacific region and beyond, such as the U.S. Strategic Approach to the People’s Republic of China, the U.S. Strategic Framework for Countering China’s Economic Aggression, the U.S. Campaign Plan for Countering China’s Malign Influence in International Organizations, and others. Together with its subordinate documents, the Framework has guided U.S. whole-of-government actions to advance regional prosperity and stability, including sovereignty, freedom of navigation and overflight, reciprocity in trade and investment, respect for individual rights and rule of law, and transparency.
Beijing is increasingly pressuring Indo-Pacific nations to subordinate their freedom and sovereignty to a “common destiny” envisioned by the Chinese Communist Party. The U.S. approach is different. We seek to ensure that our allies and partners – all who share the values and aspirations of a free and open Indo-Pacific – can preserve and protect their sovereignty.
The Framework recognizes that a free and open Indo-Pacific depends on robust American leadership. The United States has a long history of fighting back against repressive regimes on behalf of those who value freedom and openness. As the world’s largest economy, with the strongest military and a vibrant democracy, it is incumbent on the United States to lead from the front.
A food safety factory shutdown has Americans hunting for baby formula. Readying themselves for a covid-19 lockdown, Chinese in Beijing emptied store shelves. Emerging from lockdown, some in Shanghai are visiting well-provisioned markets. U.S.-China agricultural trade is booming, but many are still being left hungry. Food security, sustainability and safety remain issues.