fter the Daesh attack on the city of Palmyra, China renounced the traditional “silk route” (Bagdad, Palmyra, Damas-Tiro). An alternative trail had been envisaged, no longer across Syria but Turkey. This has also been abandoned.
During antiquity there was also a secondary route through Petra (Jordan) and Alexandra (Egypt). In the final analysis, the new Silk route should pass through Jordan then bifurcate with one branch leading to Egypt and the other in the direction of Israel.
The path traced through Egypt has been approved by the Obama Administration which authorized doubling the capacity of the Suez Canal (already done) and establishing a vast industrial area ( which is underway).
The Trump Administration would have authorized the trail by Israel. The Shanghai International Port Group has just bought a concession for operating the ports of Haifa and Ashdod. China will also built a tunnel from Mount Carmel to double the supply of Haifa’s port.
As a result, for 2021, 90 % of Israel’s international trade will be controlled by China. This means that the People’s Republic of China will join the United States as protector of Israel, a perspective rippling indignation through US-Israeli military circles.
This decision completely shakes up the regional geopolitics. Till now, arms matters apart, Beijing was a trade partner of Israel and a political partner of Hamas (which has a representation at Beijing). In exactly the same way, China has provided missiles to the Lebanese Hezbollah. From now on, Hamas and Hezbollah will no longer be able to attack Israeli road, railway and port targets without entering into conflict with China. Of course you will recall that the Secretary General of the Hezbollah, Sir Hassan Nasrallah, had explained that if Israeli attacked from Lebanon, Hezbollah could bomb nuclear materials stocked at the Israeli port of Haïfa.
This decision also shakes up global geopolitics. The China-Israeli agreement assumes prior authorization from Washington. The Chinese trade strategy ignores a series of political conditions: it modifies profoundly the rationale for the Eurasia Partnership concluded between China and Russia, which today provides the foundation for the alliance between the two countries.
In the ultimate analysis, the announcement of this new journey reveals a secret agreement between Beijing and Washington, despite the mutual escalation of custom rights between the two Great Powers.
If this Chinese project is realized, each state in the Middle East is going to reposition itself. Then every state in the world will have to adapt themselves to this new situation.