Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III delivers plenary remarks at the 20th Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore, June 3, 2023. Credit: U.S. Secretary of Defense via Flickr Overheard in Washington D.C. last week: OMG do you think they’ll see each other? LOL. It’s going to be so awkward, bruh. Facts. They haven’t talked in, like, years. It was Prom season in the nation’s capital, so you’d be forgiven for thinking you had eavesdropped on the latest tea being spilled about some or another drama-filled, high-school romance. But you’d be mistaken, because international media and foreign policy commentators were approaching the discourse surrounding the 2023 Shangri-la Dialogue, held in Singapore on June 2-4, with a similar tone and vocabulary, in particular in assessing prospects for a meeting between U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, and Gen. Li Shangfu, the PRC Minister of Defense. It was surprising nobody started throwing shade on their choice of conference attire. The Shangri-la Dialogue (SLD), which bills itself as Asia’s premier security summit, has been around for two decades, and is now regularSubscribe or login to read the rest. Subscribers get full access to: Exclusive longform investigative journalism, Q&As, news and analysis, and data on Chinese business elites and corporations. We publish China scoops you won't find anywhere else. A weekly curated reading list on China from David Barboza, Pulitzer Prize-winning former Shanghai correspondent for The New York Times. A daily roundup of China finance, business and economics headlines. We offer discounts for groups, institutions and students. Go to our Subscriptions page for details.