HANOI — Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Thursday that the “tide is turning” against China amid a growing recognition of the threat Beijing’s policies pose to the U.S. and countries across Asia.
Mr. Pompeo held talks this week with leaders of five southern Asian states and said in an interview that he found growing support for U.S.-led efforts to oppose Chinese efforts at financial and military dominance.
“Across a broad spectrum in the region, I think there’s a shared understanding that partnerships with democracies lead to better outcomes for them,” Mr. Pompeo told The Washington Times.
Based on his talks with regional leaders, Mr. Pompeo said “a deep recognition” exists that China has been ignoring international laws and norms of behavior for too long.
“There are just a thousand small ways that the tide is turning,” he said.
“There’s a little bit of push and a little bit of pull, and a lot of simple common understandings that have emerged over the last 2½ to three years where these countries have all said they welcome the United States’ more vigorous, more transparent, more responsive relationship with them, and they want to build friendships with fellow democracies to make life better for their own people,” he said.
Mr. Pompeo wrapped up the five-nation, around-the-world tour with a surprise visit to Vietnam days before the U.S. presidential election. The secretary of state said he hopes to continue leading foreign policy during a second Trump administration but noted that President Trump ultimately will decide on appointing any new Cabinet secretaries.