See More on Facebook

Analysis

Military move only complicates the situation in the Middle East

Allied strikes against the Syrian regime adds to the uncertainty surrounding the middle east situation.


Written by

Updated: April 16, 2018

United States President Donald Trump ordered military strikes against Syria, in collaboration with the United Kingdom and France. What will be the consequences? Will they affect the US-Russian relationship? Two experts shared their views with China Daily’s Zhang Zhouxiang:

Zhao Guangcheng, a researcher at the Institute of Middle Eastern Studies, Northwestern University:

The airstrikes were the result of the escalating conflict between the US and Russia. Now, with the US supported rebels losing on the battlefield, the country has finally decided to take direct military action.

Looking at it from the US side, the Trump administration hopes to make achievements in diplomacy so as to support Trump’s image among domestic voters as well as gain an advantage for the Republicans in the coming midterm elections. That’s why the US has taken rather strong measures in almost everything related to Russia-from the case of a former Russian spy being poisoned to the Syrian crisis, the US acted in quite a strong manner.

However, by doing so, the Trump administration has victimized the Syrian people. Seven years ago, it was the “Arab Spring”, which supported by the US dragged Syria into war. Today, it is still the US trying to prolong their nightmare.

Therefore, it is too early to predict the tendencies of the situation in Syria, but one thing is certain: The Syrian people will suffer longer because of this decision by the US.

Wang Jinglie, a researcher on Middle Eastern studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences:

A successful businessman, Trump hopes to maximize US interests by authorizing the military action. And contrary to its claim, US interests in the Middle East lie in chaos instead of order, because only a chaotic Middle East can offer enough excuses for the US to intervene.

It is US’ strategy and the country’s competition with Russia that has complicated the Syrian crisis. The US has made at least two mistakes in the Middle East in the past few years: First, it failed to play a dominant role in the campaign against the Islamic State. Second, it offended its own Arab allies by recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

In contrast, Russia successfully increased its influence in the region by actively coordinating with local powers such as Iran and Turkey. It is fair to say Russia has gained from its involvement in the Middle East.

That’s why the Trump administration decided to launch airstrikes on Syria-it hopes to “frighten” Russia “back”. But that strategy will hardly prove effective because Russia is determined to defend its interests in the Middle East.

Especially, as the US and Europe have been trying to “contain” Russia with the recent diplomatic crisis, Russia is determined to break it in the Middle East. Therefore there is hardly any possibility of Russia stepping back.

.



Enjoyed this story? Share it.


China Daily
About the Author: China Daily covers domestic and world news through nine print editions and digital media worldwide.

Eastern Briefings

All you need to know about Asia


Our Eastern Briefings Newsletter presents curated stories from 22 Asian newspapers from South, Southeast and Northeast Asia.

Sign up and stay updated with the latest news.



By providing us with your email address, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

View Today's Newsletter Here

Analysis

Taiwan becomes first Asian country to legalize same-sex marriage

The legislation was passed on Friday. Taiwan made history on May 17 as the first country in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage, after most lawmakers of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) voted to pass a Cabinet-sponsored bill that gives gay couples the right to get married. The bill, titled Enforcement Act of Judicial Yuan Interpretation No. 748, cleared the legislative floor at 3:30 p.m. on Friday. The new law will take effect May 24, allowing two persons of the same gender, aged 18 or older, to register a marriage, with at least two witnesses signing the registration document. Either partner in the marriage will be allowed to adopt the biological children of the other, under the law. However, non-biological children who had been adopted by one partner before the marriage cannot be adopted by the other partner, it states. The New Power Party (NPP) caucus had submitted a motion


By ANN Members
May 19, 2019

Analysis

South Korea jobless rate rises to 4.4% in April

Weak job markets and uncertain macroeconomics have contributed to increased unemployment. South Korea’s jobless rate rose to 4.4 percent in April, government data showed Wednesday, in the latest sign of a weak job market amid an economic slowdown in Asia’s fourth-largest economy. The unemployment rate increased 0.3 percentage point from a year earlier, according to the data compiled by Statistics Korea. It also marked the highest level for any April since 2000, when the corresponding figure stood at 4.5 percent. The number of employed people reached 27.03 million in April, an increase of 171,000 from the same month in 2018.


By The Korea Herald
May 15, 2019

Analysis

India’s political parties and their foreign policy platform

Where do India’s major political parties stand on foreign policy issues in Elections 2019. Foreign policy debates have historically been foreign to Indian election campaigns. But photo-ops with international leaders are always welcome because they help burnish the credentials of politicians with the domestic audience. Images of India’s first Prime Minister Jawahar Lal Nehru rubbing shoulders with Presidents Sukarno and Nasser of Indonesia and Egypt, respectively, at the Asia-Africa Bandung Conference in 1955 certainly did his image as a world statesman no harm. The television broadcast of his daughter, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, being enveloped in a surprise bear hug by ‘elder brother’ Fidel Castro at the 1983 Non-Aligned Movement Conference in New Delhi, was widely thought to have humanised the otherwise aloof Mrs G for millions in India. In more recent times, Rajiv Gandhi’s


By Ishan Joshi
May 13, 2019

Analysis

China ‘sincere’ on trade talks

Talks are set to continue in Washington on Friday. Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He said on Thursday that he came to Washington with sincerity to engage in “rational and candid” exchanges with the US to resolve some of their disparities. Liu, also a member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and chief of the Chinese side of the China-US comprehensive economic dialogue, said that raising tariffs is harmful to China, to the US, and to the whole world. “The Chinese side believes raising tariffs is not a solution to the problems,” he told the media upon his arrival on Thursday afternoon. Liu was here to attend the 11th round of China-US high-level economic and trade consultations, scheduled to end on Friday. The negotiations, following the talks in Beijing a week ago, came four days after US President Donald Trump’s tweeted threat on Sund


By China Daily
May 10, 2019

Analysis

Myanmar frees Reuters journalists jailed for Rohingya coverage

Journalists have been jailed for over 500 days. Two award-winning Myanmar journalists who were jailed over their coverage of the Rohingya crisis were freed from jail on Tuesday morning (May 7) after a presidential pardon. Reuters journalists Wa Lone, 33, and Kyaw Soe Oo, 29, were detained in December 2017 and then subsequently sentenced to seven years for breaching the Official Secrets Act.  They were freed on Tuesday  as part of an amnesty granted to more than  6,000 prisoners. Mass prisoner amne


By The Straits Times
May 7, 2019

Analysis

An ongoing war

Muhammad Amir Rana examines what is necessary to combat the growing terrorism problem. The Easter Sunday carnage in Sri Lanka demonstrates how terrorists can find a soft belly and hit it hard. They have learnt the art of exploiting local conflicts to set off a perfect storm, thereby holding on to the limelight and maintaining relevance in the eyes of those who share their ideology. They channel the anger and grievances of local radicals, who then do the rest in their own way. Al Qaeda developed a multilayered strategy of engaging local affiliates, serving as a nucleus while the latter could also pursue their independent local agendas. It seems that the militant Islamic State (IS) group has transformed this strategy by developing a nucleus-free global terrorist network, thus enhancing the impact of terrorism. The fear is that it will not remain local or regional in the near future. A global threat would require


By Dawn
May 6, 2019