Obama’s pivot to Asia remains unfinished

The outgoing US president is unable to offer reassurance to its nations
epa05324585 US President Barack Obama (C-L) and Vietnam's President Tran Dai Quang (C-R) review an honor guard at the Presidential Palace in Hanoi, Vietnam, 23 May 2016. US President Barack Obama visits Vietnam for the first time from 23 to 25 May 2016, making him the third US President to visit the South East Asian country since the end of the Vietnam War in 1975. During the first day of his visit Obama announced that the US will lift its arms embargo on weapon sales to Vietnam. EPA/MINH HOANG
US President Barack Obama and Vietnam's President Tran Dai Quang at the Presidential Palace in Hanoi, Vietnam, May 23 2016 © EPA

Barack Obama’s “pivot to Asia” was always well founded. The world’s gravity is shifting eastward and it makes sense for the US to adjust to that reality. Yet as America’s leader conducts his farewell trip to Asia, there are real questions about whether the pivot will outlast his presidency.