Israel government is new normal in the Middle East

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s new government is anything but the manifestation of extremism portrayed in most of the world’s media. Typical of misreporting in the Western press was Le Monde’s December 28 assertion that “the new coalition gives pride of place to Jewish extremists and the ultra-Orthodox, who plan to weaken the judiciary and expand settlements.”  On […]

SIGNAL’s Seventh Annual Conference on Israel’s China Policy The 2022 SIGNAL Conference is particularly timely in taking stock of the primary drivers shaping Israel’s China Policy. The conference will examine the implications and unfolding dynamics of the Sino-American rivalry in the Middle East. In recent months, the U.S. has publicly acknowledged the growing influence of […]

The China factor: US strategic turning point in the Middle East – opinion

President Biden’s recent Middle East visit might come to mark a strategic turning point. Viewed through the lens of great power competition with China, the Middle East is no longer a distraction for the US but rather a priority. Instead of exiting the Middle East, the US sees it must bolster its posture in the region to […]

U.S. gets an ally in India to counterbalance China in the Middle East

With American President Joe Biden scheduled to visit the Middle East between 13-16 July, stopping off in Israel and Saudi Arabia, many anticipate that a significant regional diplomatic breakthrough will accompany his trip. Since one of the stated goals of Biden’s very first trip is to discuss Israel’s ‘increasing integration into the greater region,’ pundits […]

China starts to sketch new Middle East architecture

As America recalibrates its terms of engagement with the Middle East, China has gradually been expanding its influence in ways that could alter the very character of the regional order.   The burst of diplomatic activity between China and Middle Eastern countries that garnered widespread media attention in January this year is emblematic of this trend.  At the […]

China and the Middle East in a Shifting Energy Landscape

China has long relied on the Middle East to secure much of the oil needed to fuel its rapid economic development. Now Chinese President Xi Jinping wishes to create an ‘ecological civilization’ that relies less on fossil fuels and more on renewable energy. As the world’s largest oil importer seeks to become greener and more […]

How China’s Afghanistan Policy Impacts Its Approach to the Middle East

The U.S. departure did not take Beijing by surprise. Likewise, Beijing has invested considerable thinking on how to avoid being part of the “graveyard of empires.” Yet while Chinese officials expressed satisfaction regarding the U.S. departure, these statements belie the reality it is now facing: with the United States gone, China will no longer benefit from the free regional security provided […]

‘The Battle at Lake Changjin’ and China’s New View of War

On China’s October 1 National Day holiday, while real-life People’s Liberation Army (PLA) fighter jets and other military planes sortied into the Taiwan Straits in record numbers, many Chinese celebrated by flocking to screenings of “The Battle at Lake Changjin,” breaking all box-office records. The 3-hour war epic commissioned by China’s propaganda department depicts a […]

China’s Interest in the Middle East: From Barrels to Bytes

China’s relations with the Middle East have long revolved around securing the energy it needs to fuel its economic development. But in recent years, Beijing has been securing another critical resource from the region: data.  China’s leadership understands that data is the oil that fuels the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the key to achieving technological supremacy, […]