America wants Israel to decouple from China over security concerns


But the Democrat Party (here, here) is anti-Israel. Will the Democrat Party decouple from the neo-Nazi Palestinian Authority? Will the Democrat Party decouple from Omar, Tlaib, and AOC? Will the Democrat Party decouple from George Soros? Will the Democrat Party decouple from J Street? Will the Democrat Party decouple from Bernie Sanders? Will the Democrat Party denounce and legislate against the BDS Movement? The BDS Movement does not exist in China. What is Israel to do if the next president from the Democrat Party is hostile to Israel?

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America wants Israel to decouple from China over security concerns

Many U.S. officials think that China’s overseas investments are part of a deliberate strategy to increase its diplomatic influence, and ultimately, its military reach.

By JNS, May 30, 2020

China just lost a major bid in the Middle East, and it has the United States to thank.

Israel’s Sorek2 water desalination plant will be built by Israeli company IDE Technologies and not by Hong Kong-based Hutchison Water controlled by Chinese billionaire Li Ka-shing, as originally thought. The United States believes that Chinese control of or investment in infrastructure and companies abroad presents a serious security threat. U.S. officials have been hard at work convincing allies to create some level of distance from the Communist regime.

Jonathan Schanzer, senior vice president for research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, said that in recent years, voices from Washington have called for Israel to “decouple” from China.

These calls morphed to outright insistence when U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visited Israel earlier this month. The urgency of his message was crystal-clear since he arrived at a time when both countries were in near-absolute lockdown as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. He is said to have pressured Israel to reject further Chinese bids to build infrastructure or control businesses.

Last year, Pompeo is said to have cautioned the Jewish state that allowing China more control over Israeli infrastructure could result in a reduction in U.S. intelligence-sharing.

Many U.S. officials think that China’s overseas investments are part of a deliberate strategy to increase its diplomatic influence, and ultimately, its military reach.

China currently has investments in the ports in Haifa and Ashdod, as well as in Israel’s high-tech sector. A Chinese firm owns Tnuva, Israel’s largest dairy producer.

Haifa Port, a part of which Israel has allowed China to develop and control, is an especially sensitive case since the U.S. Navy annually docks its Sixth Fleet there for a short period of time. A Chinese presence there could jeopardize these visits; as such, the United States believes that greater oversight is “absolutely necessary,” according to Schanzer.

He told JNS that “as China became a central focus of the U.S. national security strategy and national defense strategy under the Trump administration, the overall U.S. posture has shifted significantly and has thereby put Israel under some pressure to shift as well.”

Schanzer noted that for decades, Israel was doing what every other country in the world was doing: to engage in commerce with China.

“It took a while for the China-Israel relationship to develop,” he said, “but it did eventually, due to Israel’s technological prowess.”

For its part, Schanzer said, Israel “warmed to China for its cheap labor when it came to infrastructure projects and generous offers when it came to technology.”

China is currently Israel’s third-largest trade partner in the world. Therefore, stepping away from lucrative deals will prove difficult, particularly for a small country like Israel; so, too, will rejecting such a large economic, political and military power.

Whichever direction it chooses, Israel might jeopardize its relationship with either China or America, placing it in a damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don’t situation.

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