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Obama should seek cooperation with China rather than trying to contain its rise by ganging up with smaller nations
The United States is facing a number of thorny diplomatic challenges at the start of President Barack Obama's second term. For example, stabilizing the situation in Afghanistan and Pakistan to enable a smooth withdrawal of US forces this year; stabilizing the situation in the Middle East, especially to placate Egypt and Israel, and achieve a smooth political change in Syria; managing the issues surrounding the nuclear programs of Iran and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea; and handling relations with emerging powers, including the stalled relations with Russia and the complex relations with China.
The US government has long been aware that nontraditional security threats are no longer the main threat facing the country. Although it faces a variety of nontraditional security threats by non-state actors, they cannot undermine the US' role as the world's policeman. Only state actors can become the main force pushing forward power transition in the international community. So Washington's focus will return to state-to-state relations, particularly those in the Western Pacific region.