“I don’t want to get too conceptual here, but what do you mean it’s not born out by the facts that countries in greater numbers in Southeast Asia are becoming friendlier with China?” Lee asked at the State Department daily press briefing.
“I mean it’s completely born out by the facts.”
“Name them,” Kirby said.
“Well, the Philippines for one,” Lee said before reciting a list that included Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, and Malaysia.
“Okay, so we have two or three, four, whatever,” Kirby said. “There’s a lot of nations in the Asian-Pacific region.”
“There’s only ten in ASEAN,” Lee said.
The smartest diplomat ever says that there is no reason to be afraid of our allies leaving us for warmer relations with China. The first post-American President, indeed.