With a grandiose diplomatic flourish China brokered a rapprochement between Saudi Arabia and Iran, in the process upending US calculus in the Gulf and beyond.
While the United States has angered its Gulf allies by apparently dithering over morality, curbing arms supplies and chilling relations, Saudi Arabia’s King-in-waiting Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, known as MBS, has found a kindred spirit in China’s leader Xi Jinping.
Both are bold, assertive, willing to take risks and seemingly share unsated ambition.
Friday’s announcement that Riyadh and Tehran had renewed diplomatic ties was unexpected, but it shouldn’t have been. It is the logical accumulation of America’s diplomatic limitations and China’s growing quest to shape the world in its orbit.
Beijing’s claim that “China pursues no selfish interest whatsoever in the Middle East,” rings hollow. It buys more oil from Saudi Arabia than any other country in the world….
…Tehran is isolated by international sanctions and Beijing is providing a glimmer of financial relief.
And, in the words of Iran’s Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei last year, there’s also the hope of more to come as he sees geopolitical power shifting east.
“Asia will become the center of knowledge, the center of economics, as well as the center of political power, and the center of military power,” Khamenei said.
The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river, the Euphrates; and its water was dried up, so that the way would be prepared for the kings from the east.
1 Corinthians 15:1-4
Now I make known to you, brethren, the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received, in which also you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain.
For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,
For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.