The fact that Huntsman makes no mention of this important expression of national power [military strength] is a reminder that he ran for the Republican nomination as a quasi-isolationist–and reason to be thankful his campaign gained so little traction.
I don’t know why Huntsman chose not to mention U.S. military strength explicitly in his op-ed, but it’s laughable to say that Huntsman ran as a “quasi-isolationist” during the primaries. One would only need to read yesterday’s op-ed to appreciate how wrong this description of Huntsman is. A “quasi-isolationist” wouldn’t have threatened using “all elements of national power” against Iran, which was one of several times that Huntsman endorsed a war with Iran. He certainly wouldn’t say the following about the U.S. in East Asia:
We can clearly communicate to our allies through our actions that the U.S. will be able to project power in the region despite Chinese opposition.
It’s hard to reconcile Huntsman’s mention of power projection in East Asia with the idea that he is ignoring U.S. military strength in his recommendations for China policy.