Trump Heads to Asia With an Ambitious Agenda but Little to Offer

By New York Times

President Trump in Dallas last month. He leaves on Friday for an 11-day, five-nation trip through Asia. Credit Tom Brenner/The New York Times

WASHINGTON — President Trump departs on his first trip to Asia on Friday weakened and scandal-scarred, ready to face off against newly empowered Chinese and Japanese leaders in a region increasingly determined to set its course without American direction.

The White House is framing the trip as a chance for Mr. Trump to showcase his budding personal relationships with President Xi Jinping of China and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan — a forceful world leader pressing his peers to negotiate fairer trade deals with the United States and to intensify the pressure on nuclear-armed North Korea.

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