Flying to Shanghai on Wednesday, Iran's hard-line president is doing more than just attending an Asian security summit: Mahmoud Ahmadinejad also seeks to gain Russian and Chinese support at a critical moment for his country's nuclear program.
He also aims to prove that his country is not isolated, despite US claims that the world's major powers are lined up to rein in Iran's nuclear program.
Past trips to Asia have been a chance for Ahmadinejad to tap into anti-US sentiment and tout himself as a leader who is standing up to Washington. Last month, he was cheered by Indonesian students and by a crowd shouting "Fight America, fight Israel!" outside a Jakarta mosque where he performed prayers.