With all the flack President Trump has received on his steel tariff’s from the MSM, most observers are missing the point of the decision. Trump understands that China and the USA are already engaged in economic warfare, with China winning. The tariffs are designed to balance out China’s trade policy.
More important than the effects of the tariffs, the signal from the Trump administration is that China is essentially American enemy number one. This has a tremendous effect across the world. With alliances consolidating from the east to west, Trump is trying to nudge allies to make a decision.
Israel is not immune to this challenge. Since the early 2000’s it has courted both India and China with tremendous success. Of course India is seen as more important and has been raised to the level of a strategic ally, which places Israel in the middle of the Indo-Chinese rivalry.
Up until now, Israel has been able to stay neutral on issues of dispute between China and India, yet with the USA making China into enemy number one, Israel appears to be heading towards a crossroads. Of course, the decision in many ways was helped along by China’s actions towards India and its support of Pakistan which is an enemy of India and adversary of Israel. China’s disregard of civil rights, persecution of opposition dissent, and the now appointement of President Xi for life make Israel’s decision that much easier.
What About the Chinese Investment Potential
While its true Israel will have to do away with Chinese money, the investments China has made seem to be part of a larger strategy of control. One just needs to ask Zambia on how their ability to have self determination has gone since the Chinese have taken over the copper and coal industry there.
Zambia Reports published the following a few days ago: “The Zambia Association of Timber and Forestry Based Industry has alleged that about 5,000 mukula laden containers from Zambia have been exported to China following the ban on the exportation of timber species in 2017.”
According to the report the government appears to be working with China to help illegally export the mukula. Of course China loves to insist that it is positively investing in Zambia.
Israel has deftly avoided going down the same route as Zambia and although the lure of Chinese investments can be great, Jerusalem realized early on that dealing with China is like a drug that feels great in the beginning but can be deadly down the line.
Trump’s tariff decision has now begun to force the concretization of new alignments that have already been underway. As the trade wars and potential direct conflicts between China and the USA heat up, look for even more increased partnerships between Israel and India and a dampening of Israel-Chinese relations.