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Reading the Tea Leaves: What to Expect from Trump's First Asia Visit

On November 9, 2017, NBR and the Foreign Affairs Congressional Staff Association (FACSA) held a timely, informational briefing regarding the ongoing visit by President Donald Trump to Japan, South Korea, China, Vietnam, and the Philippines. The President was expected to lay out and pursue economic, security, and geostrategic goals during this first trip to Asia. The expert panelists provided a brief overview of the state of U.S. relations with Asia’s major powers, an update on the trip so far, and a look at future steps Congress may be in a position to take on these relationships.

Panelists

Roy Kamphausen
Senior Vice President for Research, The National Bureau of Asian Research

Scott Snyder
Senior Fellow for Korea Studies and Director of the Program on U.S.-Korea Policy, Council on Foreign Relations

Yuki Tatsumi
Senior Associate, Stimson Center

Moderator

Dan Aum
Director of Government and Media Relations, The National Bureau of Asian Research


Panelist Bios

Roy D. Kamphausen is Senior Vice President for Research and Director of the Washington, D.C., office at The National Bureau of Asian Research (NBR). He provides executive leadership to NBR’s policy research agenda on security, politics, energy, economics, and trade. Mr. Kamphausen directs NBR’s engagement with the administration, U.S. Congress, and foreign embassies in Washington, D.C

As a specialist on a range of U.S.-Asia issues, Mr. Kamphausen leads and contributes substantively to NBR’s research initiatives. He is the author, contributing author, or co-editor of numerous publications, including chapters in NBR’s Strategic Asia series; the Carlisle People’s Liberation Army Conference.

Mr. Kamphausen is an adjunct associate professor at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs and a senior adviser on East Asia for the University of Connecticut’s Office of Global Affairs. He lectures regularly at leading U.S. military institutions, including the United States Military Academy (West Point) and the U.S. Army War College. Mr. Kamphausen regularly briefs members of Congress and consults for the U.S. Department of Defense. Prior to joining NBR, Mr. Kamphausen served as a career U.S. Army officer. As a China foreign area officer, his career included assignments as China policy director in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, China strategist for the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and a military attaché at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing.

Mr. Kamphausen holds a BA in Political Science from Wheaton College and an MA in International Affairs from Columbia University. He studied Chinese at both the Defense Language Institute and Beijing’s Capital Normal University.


Scott Snyder is senior fellow for Korea studies and director of the program on U.S.-Korea policy at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), where he had served as an adjunct fellow from 2008 to 2011. Prior to joining CFR, Mr. Snyder was a senior associate in the international relations program of The Asia Foundation, where he founded and directed the Center for U.S.-Korea Policy and served as The Asia Foundation's representative in Korea (2000-2004). He was also a senior associate at Pacific Forum CSIS. Mr. Snyder has worked as an Asia specialist in the research and studies program of the U.S. Institute of Peace and as acting director of Asia Society's contemporary affairs program. Mr. Snyder was a Pantech visiting fellow at Stanford University's Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center during 2005–2006, and received an Abe fellowship, administered by the Social Sciences Research Council, in 1998–99.

Mr. Snyder has authored numerous book chapters on aspects of Korean politics and foreign policy and Asian regionalism and is the author of The Japan-South Korea Identity Clash: East Asian Security and the United States (with Brad Glosserman, 2015). He served as the project director for CFR's Independent Task Force on policy toward the Korean Peninsula. He currently writes for the blog, "Asia Unbound."

Mr. Snyder received a BA from Rice University and an MA from the regional studies East Asia program at Harvard University and was a Thomas G. Watson fellow at Yonsei University in South Korea.


Yuki Tatsumi is a Senior Associate and Director of the Japan program at the Stimson Center. Before joining Stimson, Ms. Tatsumi worked as a research associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and as the special assistant for political affairs at the Embassy of Japan in Washington. Tatsumi is a co-author of Global Security Watch: Japan (Praeger, 2010), an author of Japan's National Security Policy Infrastructure: Can Tokyo Meet Washington's Expectations? (Stimson Center, 2008), and an editor/contributing author of The New Nuclear Agenda: Prospects for US-Japan Cooperation (Stimson Center, 2012), North Korea: Challenge for the US-Japan Alliance (Stimson Center, 2010), Strategic Yet Strained: US force realignment in Japan and its impact of Okinawa (Stimson Center, 2008), and Japan's New Defense Establishment: Institutions, Capabilities and Implications (Stimson Center, 2007). In September 2006 Ms. Tatsumi testified before the House Committee on International Relations. She is a recipient of the 2009 Yasuhiro Nakasone Incentive Award. In 2012 she was awarded the Letter of Appreciation from the Ministry of National Policy of Japan for her contribution in advancing mutual understanding between the United States and Japan.

A native of Tokyo, Ms. Tatsumi holds a BA in liberal arts from the International Christian University in Tokyo, Japan and an MA in international economics and Asian studies from the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University in Washington.


Dan Aum is Director, Government and Media Relations, at NBR. In this capacity, Mr. Aum leads NBR’s engagement with the U.S. Congress and the media. He works closely with NBR’s research group leaders and NBR’s executive team to develop and implement nonpartisan outreach strategies that integrate congressional needs and perspectives.

Mr. Aum comes to NBR from Capitol Hill, where he managed a portfolio of thematic and regional issues related to foreign policy, international law, and human rights on the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission. Previously, at Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, Mr. Aum was on a strategic litigation team that brought cases before international and regional bodies, and led policy initiatives that involved regular engagement with government bodies and the media. He holds a JD from the George Washington University Law School and a BA in Philosophy from Baylor University.


FACSA is an officially recognized, bipartisan and bicameral organization tasked with providing networking opportunities, career guidance, briefings on key topics and other engagements for staffers to learn and grow as foreign policy professionals.

NBR is a nonprofit, nonpartisan research institution dedicated to informing and strengthening policy in the Asia-Pacific. NBR conducts advanced independent research on strategic, political, economic, globalization, health, and energy issues affecting U.S. relations with Asia.


NBR engages in a demand-driven approach to reach out to Congress and cultivate relationships on both sides of the aisle. We work with congressional offices and staff to provide tailored briefings and consultations with our network of experts, partner on educational programming with congressional study groups and caucuses, generate high-profile speaking opportunities for members of Congress, and integrate NBR’s research agenda with legislative needs.