Saturday, June 20, 2015

China: A Solution in the Middle East?

China’s growing presence and lack of baggage could make it an effective player in the troubled region.

By David Lai and Noah Lingwall

The Diplomat - June 18, 2015

U.S. President Barack Obama admitted at the June 2015 G-7 summit in Germany that his administration did not have a “complete strategy” for Islamic extremists in the Middle East. Although the admission was only a brief note in the president’s remarks, it spoke volumes about the United States’ predicament in dealing with the problems that plague that part of the world. Given their complicated nature, any future U.S. strategy will merely act as a bandage that covers deeply rooted and infested wounds. Until the underlying issues are addressed, the U.S. will find itself trapped in awkward positions again and again.

What should Washington do about the Middle East? It appears that at present, it has no choice but to help the Iraqi government drive ISIS out and restore order in Iraq. But in regard to the problems in Syria and Yemen, and for many other issues in the region, the United States does have choices and must come up with a long-term strategy.