Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Afghanistan: Out with NATO, in with China? --- Afghan President Ashraf Ghani arrives in Beijing today to talk minerals and stability. China is not ready to fight the Taliban but wants a regime that doesn't foment jihadi trouble in Xinjiang. -- Beijing — The last British soldier left Afghanistan over the weekend. The last American combat troops will be gone by Christmas. Afghanistan’s beleaguered government is looking in new directions for help, and new President Ashraf Ghani arrived Tuesday in Beijing, where Chinese authorities are anxious to oblige. -- If 2014 marks an endpoint for Western policy in Afghanistan, it is more of a starting point for China. -- China will not send any troops to replace the departing NATO forces, local and foreign analysts agree. But Beijing, which offered Mr. Ghani hundreds of millions in aid Tuesday, is gearing up to play a leading role in Afghanistan’s future – fearful that if its neighbor descends into chaos, more trouble will spread into China’s restless, predominantly Muslim province of Xinjiang. -- As terror attacks there grow more common, “the Chinese government cannot avoid facing this problem,” says Zhang Li, a South Asia expert at Sichuan University in the southwestern city of Chengdu. “Whether Afghanistan and Pakistan are stable is very important in this respect.” -- Read More, The Christian Science,


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