The U.S.-Japan Alliance Should Pivot to China’s Human Rights Issues

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Just over a month into office, President Joe Biden and his team have repeatedly claimed that the United States is back on the world stage to defend and promote the liberal international order in the face of the challenge posed by China. Their assurances began in late January with Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s public affirmation of the previous administration’s statements that Beijing is committing “genocide” against its own citizens. When a coup in Myanmar this month presented an early test of America’s renewed commitment to democracy, the Biden administration imposed direct sanctions on those military leaders responsible and threatened additional measures depending on the military junta’s future actions. The White House is sending an important message: the floundering legitimacy of U.S. democracy both at home and abroad will not deter the United States from attempting to be a global leader on human rights.