CHINA, RUSSIA, AND SYRIA
Forget about a unipolar solution to the mess in Syria. Not only has Mr. Putin intervened in the country, but China is now signalling that it may place significant military assets in the country according to this article shared by Mr. G.B.:
According to the article, China’s current commitment is limited to humanitarian aid and military training:
In a major policy shift, China has launched the pivot to the Middle East aimed at increasing its involvement in the region by providing military training and humanitarian aid in Syria. In April, China appointed a special envoy to Damascus in order to work toward a peaceful resolution to the conflict.
Before the assignment Chinese envoy Xie Xiaoyan had praised «Russia’s military role in the war, and said the international community should work harder together to defeat terrorism in the region».
On August 14, Rear-Admiral Guan Youfei, the head of the Office for International Military Cooperation under the Central Military Commission that oversees China’s 2.3 million-member armed forces, visited Syria to meet Syrian Defence Minister Fahd Jassim Al Freij and Russian Lieutenant-General Sergei Chvarkov, head of the ceasefire monitoring mission in Syria, as well as Russian top commanders at the Hmeimim military base on the Syrian coast. The visit marks a major milestone in the relationship to make Beijing a party to the conflict.
During the visit, China and Syria announced plans to boost military cooperation, including training and humanitarian aid, signaling stronger Chinese support for Damascus. It is the first public visit by a senior Chinese military officer to the country since the Russian armed forces launched its operation in Syria last September. (Emphasis added)
We all know by now how these things go: first comes the humanitarian aid, then comes the military training and arms sales, then come the troops in the form of more “advisors.” But as the article also notes, China’s role here is motivated by a genuine desire to stabilize the region as a component for its “new silk road” project to build infrastructure tying the Far East, central Asia, and Europe together, and this cannot be done so long as there is sectarian Islamic violence in the region toppling Arab secular Islamic states: