The United States and China are locked in a power struggle over Asia, where both countries have expanded their influence in recent years. President Donald Trump is pushing to build on increasingly robust partnerships with the likes of Australia, India and Japan to gain the upper hand in a feud that has divided and reshaped the region.
Trump’s bold approach presents opportunities—and risks.
With a divisive U.S. election just two weeks away, the geopolitical battle for the Indo-Pacific is dominating the foreign policy track of both candidates, as well the attention of regional countries of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue who seek to avoid submission to and escalation with China as they also pursue their own separate interests.
The Quad was established in 2004 but given new life under Trump in 2017. Since then it has become a driving force that presents an informal challenge to an increasingly powerful China without the overt commitments of an official military alliance.