Friday, 16 April 2021 12:12 GMT

A bipolar US policy towards China and Syria


(MENAFN - Asia Times) China’s new Syrian envoy Xie Xiaoyan

China’s new Syrian envoy Xie Xiaoyan has been an ambassador to Iran Ethiopia and the African Union highlighting China's regional and comprehensive approach towards the greater Middle East. This contrasts to the US schizophrenic approach e.g. the US fighting al-Qaeda in Afghanistan while arming al-Qaeda affiliates in Syria arming Shiite militia in Iraq while arming Sunni militia against them in Syria. To boot the US is arming Syrian Kurds fighting ISIS while selling new weapons to Turkey to bomb the Iraqi Kurds fighting ISIS.

In the face of such chaos it should be no surprise that China is taking matters into its own hands to protect its interests. And just as the US established the military Central Command (CENTCOM) in the 1980s as part of the Carter Doctrine to protect its Mideast oil supply one wonders if it’s a matter of time before China creates its own CENTCOM to protect its growing energy dependency on the greater Middle East. The US on the other hand no longer depends on Mideast oil and is set to become an energy exporter

[1] Nabih Bulos W.J. Hennigan Brian Bennett CIA-armed militias are shooting at Pentagon-armed ones in Syria' Chicago Tribune March 26 2016 http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/ct-syria-militias-us-cia-islamic-state-20160326-story.html.

[2] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eIqwwK9Og3A

[3] Jeremy Page 'US seeks China's backing for coalition against Islamic State' Wall Street Journal September 9 2014 http://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-seeks-chinas-backing-for-coalition-against-islamic-state-1410271284

[4]http://jihadology.net/2015/05/01/%E1%B9%A3awt-al-islam-presents-a-new-video-message-from-%E1%B8%A5izb-al-islami-al-turkistani-turkistan-islamic-party-in-bilad-al-sham-conquest-of-jisr-al-shaghur/ ; Jacob Zenn 'An overview of Chinese Fighters and anti-Chinese Militant Groups in Syria and Iraq' China Brief Vol 14 Issue 19 October 10 2014 http://www.jamestown.org/programs/chinabrief/single/?tx_ttnews[tt_news]=42944&cHash=e2bb019a522a651982945abb50c5ff48#.VvuWdfhlOUk

[5] http://www.usni.org/magazines/proceedings/2014-02/deterring-dragon-under-sea

[6] Seth Robson 'US buildup in Philippines raises stakes in region' Stars and Stripes February 3. 2016 http://www.stripes.com/news/us-buildup-in-philippines-raises-stakes-in-region-1.391912; http://www.ibtimes.com/south-china-sea-controversy-us-deploy-more-troops-5-philippine-bases-near-disputed-2340756

[7] http://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-syria-china-idUSKCN0WV0RG
[8] Christopher Harress 'Pentagon Approves ‘Bunker Buster’ Smart Bombs Sale To Turkey For Fight Against Kurds' International Business News March 1 2016
http://www.ibtimes.com/pentagon-approves-bunker-buster-smart-bombs-sale-turkey-fight-against-kurds-2328138

Dr. Christina Lin is a Fellow at the Center for Transatlantic Relations at SAIS-Johns Hopkins University. She is the author of 'The New Silk Road: China's Energy Strategy in the Greater Middle East' (The Washington Institute for Near East Policy) and a former director for China policy at the US Department of Defense.

The opinions expressed in this column are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the view of Asia Times.

(Copyright 2016 Asia Times Holdings Limited a duly registered Hong Kong company. All rights reserved. Please contact us about sales syndication and republishing.)


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