Obama Trip to Asia Seeks to Highlight Regional Ties

President Obama visits Thailand, Myanmar, and Cambodia in historic trip.

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"[The trip] is not just promoting human rights and democracy, but making sure we cement our relationships throughout the region in many ways that are a counterpoint to China," says Mark Kennedy, who leads George Washington University's Graduate School of Political Management. "And the South China Seas disputes are one of the great tinder boxes left on the planet, and how we address those issues will be vitally important in the decade ahead."

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  • Rebekah Metzler is a political writer for U.S. News & World Report. You can contact her at rmetzler@usnews.com or follow her on Twitter.