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As Israel and Hezbollah exchange bombs and missiles, oil-hungry Beijing plays out its sinister strategy
THE STORY behind the story in the Middle East today is the proxy war, as Israel, on behalf of the US, takes on Hezbollah, which fights on behalf of Iran and Syria. Indeed, one can widen it further and describe the participants as proxies for the West versus militant Islam.
This analysis of the conflict sometimes mentions, in passing, Russia’s declining influence. But there is another player that has somehow received almost no coverage.
For decades China has been building up influence in the Middle East. It suits China’s strategy well that coverage has been almost non-existent. As Deng Xiaoping once put it, China must “hide brightness and nourish obscurity . . . to bide our time and build up our capabilities”. As China develops into the role of global power, its influence on the region is no longer obscure; it cannot now be ignored.
The original postwar Middle East proxies were the US and the Soviet Union. Washington supporting Israel and the Kremlin sponsoring enemy regimes and their terrorist offshoots. But the Sino-Soviet split, which began in the 1960s, meant a lifting of the constraint on China getting involved, and it soon began to develop ties to countries that were not under Soviet influence, such as Egypt under Sadat.
Originally posted by Skadi_the_Evil_Elf
Well of course. And remember, Israel was selling American technology to China too. China isn't stupid. They are waiting patiently for the west to burn themselves out in the middle east, then move in with their own force themselves. The chaos in the middle east benefits them just as much as it benefits oil tycoons and defense contractors, but in a different way.