A New Chinese Foreign Policy.

It is from 2014 but with great links.

Here is it’s opening.

A new era is dawning in Chinese foreign policy as the country’s economic growth enables it to move from past timorousness in declaring itself a global leader and a relative inability to defend its interests, to one in which Beijing can seek adjustments in the security environment it has faced for the last sixty years. In the Chinese-language media, politicians are increasingly talking of China as a great power. Yet Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has put Beijing’s new foreign policy to the test and raised questions about the extent of China’s global role.

The rest can be read here.

Just peaceful devleopment​?

Here is one bit.

According to conventional wisdom, Chinese president Xi Jinping has launched a more ambitious and geopolitically game-changing era of Chinese foreign economic policy. And Beijing is certainly promoting new economic initiatives, from the creation of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) to the rollout of the One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative. But China’s international economic grand strategy under Xi is not new. It is an extension of Beijing’s long-standing Peaceful Development frameworkfrom the mid-1990s, which asserts that China’s own development and stability is contingent on shared prosperity with its international economic partners, especially those in the developing world. In fact, the Peaceful Development strategy has not been uniformly successful, and Xi’s expansion of it is likely to create unexpected challenges for China and the world.

The rest can be read here.

Mearshimer ​on Iran.

Iran is not a direct threat to the United States. It is not even an indirect threat to the United States. First, Iran does not have nuclear weapons and it has signed an agreement with the world’s major powers that makes it impossible for Tehran to develop nuclear weapons in the foreseeable future. Second, Iran does not have missiles that can strike the U.S. homeland. Third, Iran has weak conventional forces, which cannot be used against the United States or any country in the Middle East that is under the American security umbrella. Fourth, Iran is not a serious threat to attack another country in its region. It has not launched a war against another country even once in modern times, and there is no evidence that it is now preparing to take the offensive against any of its neighbors. Fifth, Iran is not the source of America’s terrorism problem. To the extent that any one country deserves that title, it is Saudi Arabia, not Iran.

The truth is that it is the United States that is a direct threat to Iran, not the other way around. The Trump administration, with much prompting from Israel and Saudi Arabia, has its gunsights on Iran. The aim is regime change, and there is much evidence that the United States might use military force to achieve that goal.

The rest can be read here.

The alliance with Saudi Arabia

Great piece by Steven Metz on the outdated alliance with SA.

Here is one bit

Ironically, the rise of violent, transnational Islamist extremism, led first by al-Qaida and later by the Islamic State, both solidified the U.S.-Saudi relationship and amplified its fissures. While Riyadh never intended to create revolutionary movements like al-Qaida and the Islamic State, its aggressive efforts to spread its deeply conservative Wahhabist strain of Islam inadvertently set the stage for extremist ideologues like Osama bin Laden. Unlike the Soviet or Iranian threats, violent Islamist extremism emerged from within Saudi Arabia, as demonstrated by the fact that most of the 9/11 hijackers and many of the foreign fighters in the Iraqi insurgency were Saudis.

The rest can be read here.

Four years on, Yemen war remains Saudi Arabia’s albatross.

Four years on, Yemen war remains Saudi Arabia’s albatross

The piece notes how ineffectual military campaigns can be as well as the terrible toll American client states can produce when they wage war.

“According to the UN, 80% of Yemen’s 24 million people need humanitarian assistance and 10 million are close to starvation. “

Read more here.

Example of American assurance.

The headline is “Bombers fly coordinated missions from Indo-Pacific, Europe.”

Here is the opening paragraph.

“Bombers launched from Andersen AFB and flew north to an area east of the Kamchatka Peninsula before returning to base. Collectively, the flights from the Indo-Pacific and Europe demonstrated U.S. commitment to allies and partners through the global employment of military forces.”

The rest of the press release can be read here.

China seeks influence in Europe

“Rachel Ellehuus, a former U.S. Defense Department official who worked on NATO issues and is now with the Center for Strategic and International Studies, said that China is undoubtedly seeking more influence in Europe, and it’s difficult to separate its commercial ambitions from geopolitical ones. “There’s this new understanding that much like Russia, China is seeking to use transactions, money, finance, and investment as leverage for influence in Europe,” she said.”

“U.S. officials also worry that China is gaining too many commercial footholds in some of Europe’s largest and most important ports, including Rotterdam, Antwerp, Hamburg, and Piraeus, that it could use to wield political influence over European governments.”

The author is Robbie Gammer and the rest can be read at Foreign Policy, found here.

What a Military Intervention in Venezuela Would Look Like

“Precision strikes are often portrayed as a quick, cheap, safe, and effective alternative to a broader military intervention. But two U.S. precision strike operations—in Libya, in 2011, and in Yugoslavia, in 1999—underscore their unpredictable nature and their limited ability to shape political outcomes. In Libya, where the strikes lasted for seven months, the intervention achieved its narrow objective—the collapse of Muammar al-Qaddafi’s regime—but left the country in chaos. The three-month bombing campaign in Yugoslavia was more successful: It degraded the Yugoslav military’s ability to repress the population and helped lead to the establishment of a UN-monitored political framework, although that was a more limited goal than regime change.”

“There’s no such thing as risk-free military action. But in this case, the social, economic, and security costs of intervening far outweigh the benefits. Whether the United States launched limited air strikes or a full ground invasion, it would almost certainly get sucked in to a long, difficult campaign to stabilize Venezuela after the initial fighting was over. Such an engagement would cost American lives and money and hurt the United States’ standing in Latin America. An extended occupation would reignite anti-Americanism in the region, particularly if U.S. soldiers committed real or perceived abuses, and it would damage U.S. relations with countries outside the region, too. Finally, a war-weary American public is unlikely to stand for yet another extended military campaign.

The author is Frank O. Mora and the rest can be read at Foreign Affairs, found here.