China Considers the Middle East
Bloomsbury Academic, 31 dec. 1993 - 384 sidor
For over two thousand years, China has viewed the Middle East as an extension of its vital Central Asian security buffer. Over the past four decades, China's foreign policy in relation to the Middle East has changed dramatically, and the last decade, in particular, has seen the sharp development of its economic and security interests. Relatively little has been written about the objectives and ideas that have shaped China's Middle East policy since 1949, and this book is the first major study of its kind. Historically, China's policy objective has been a Middle East free from outside interference. But recent changes in the international order - in particular the collapse of the Soviet bloc - have revealed the defects of this essentially passive approach. No longer able to play the role of the third power with whom governments can keep on good terms in order to 'threaten' Moscow or Washington, China has been spurred to a more active political involvement in the Middle East. The growth of Islamic political activism and claims of a common 'third world' identity have, in addition, provided a bridge between the two regions. Lillian Craig Harris presents a detailed and authoritative analysis of China's Middle East policy in its crucial historical perspective. She examines the influence of Islam in China, dissects the impact of modern China's attempts to offer itself as a political and economic 'model' for the Middle Eastern states, and identifies the barriers to a closer future relationship.
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