Thursday, February 24, 2005

Bullying Eagle, Cunning Dragon and A Losing Bear

Among other concerns that U.S. President George W. Bush is harking about while he is in Europe this week is his government’s ardent opposition to European Union’s plan to lift the arms embargo it maintains with China.

Right now, countries from the European Union could not sell their fighter planes and submarines to China even if the latter has one of the highest military budgets in the whole world. At $150 Billion worth of war marbles, China easily becomes a temptation difficult to resist. With this, EU have started to send some signals that it is willing to oppose the United States as it plans to lift the arms embargo on China.

The embargo came to exist after the Tiananmen Massacre incident in 1993. At present, China sources its arms from Israel and Russia. I wonder why the United States is mum on the involvement of these two countries with China considering that some of the weapons produced by Israel are advanced-grade war materials such as drones.

The whole point of EU’s recent inclination towards lifting the arms ban is that it wants to fully normalize its relation with one of the most important country in the world, especially economic wise. European leaders are worried that China may feel so sour over their continued arms embargo and may not allow many European sellers to peddle their cars and cell phones within their shores.

I guess EU leaders had a point. Europe also wants to sell perfumes, and jeans and bottled water to the increasingly becoming the biggest consumer market in the world. They may be left out from the main event of global economics.

The United States is continually opposed to the idea of free flowing of arms trade between Europe and China, fearing that the balance of power between China and Taiwan will all the more become tipped over to the side of the Red Dragon nation, and this may become a cause for more tension in the area.

Questions remain. If despite of the ban China can still sourced their arms necessity from Russia, Israel and some other countries (some British arms companies have found a way to circumvent the ban), then would the E.U. arms embargo really makes a difference?

Does the E.U. embargo really improve the balance of power in the Taiwan Strait region? I mean, isn’t it already tipped over to the side of the ever-powerful China even now as we speak?

U.S. bullies but China remain cunning in sourcing their war imports from Russia and Israel. And the European Union may end up becoming the losing bear in this protracted endgame between the East and the West.
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