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Iran, China, Saudi Arabia and sanctions
Posted by: mcq on Friday, January 12, 2007

Interesting story out of China, where an Israeli diplomatic mission just wrapped up a visit there. Said PM Ehud Olmert, it was satisfactory "beyond expectation".

Why? Because Olmert found China more supportive of sanctions against Iran than it believed possible. And there's a good but surprising pragmatic reason:
In January 2006, Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah, who diplomatic officials in Jerusalem have said is as concerned about a nuclear Iran as Israel, went to China and reportedly told the Chinese leadership that Saudi Arabia would make up for any oil shortfall that might arise were the Iranians to cut back oil to China as punishment for sanctions.
That promise has given China some diplomatic room in which to more forcefully back sanctions. And, apparently, China's Prime Minister, Wen Jiabao was very clear about his stance on Iran's acquisition of nuclear weapons:
On Wednesday Mr Olmert met Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao, who reportedly offered his assurance that Beijing would not permit Iran to develop nuclear weapons.
In diplo-speak, "would not" is strong language. The Jerusalem Post expands on the point:
Diplomatic officials said that in private contacts between Israeli and Chinese diplomats recently, the Chinese have emphasized their opposition to the Iranian nuclear program and have reaffirmed their commitment to cooperate with attempts to stop it.

While Iran does not pose a direct threat to China, Beijing is concerned that a nuclear Iran would destabilize the region, something that could push oil prices way up and jeopardize the flow of oil - both of which could have a devastating effect on China's breakneck economy.
As Olmert said:
"The fact that the Chinese are saying that they do not want an Iran with nuclear bombs has great significance," AFP news agency reported him as saying.
I'd agree. And now that Saudi Arabia has allayed their economic fears, they may get onboard with even tougher measures to ensure Tehran doesn't succeed in developing them.
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Previous Comments to this Post 

Our friends the Saudis. I guess now we have to use that phrase without heavy irony, at least for a while.
Written By: sammler
The Chinese have their own problems with Muslim separatists (or East Turkmenistan nationalists, depending on how you look at it). These have started to become more radicalized of late so the Chinese may need to protect their flank.
Written By: Dave Schuler
The promise from Saud would seem to be made out a lie by other statements indicating they were already pumping at capacity to make good for the world market shortfall already imposed by Iraq being offline for the most part.

Written By: Bithead
URL: http://

I’m sorry to see you fell for this (like Olmert et al did).

If the ChiComs were serious about this, why did they sell Iran uranium in the first place? Why are they helping Iran’s nuke program as we speak? Why are they signing multi-billion dollar oil and gas deals with Iran?

The Communists said the same thing about keeping North Korea from getting nukes for years. We all see how well that turned out.


It’s East Turkestan, not East Turkmenistan, and the ChiComs have never presented any evidence to justify their claims of "terrorism" there.

Communist China is the largest enabler of terrorism on the planet:
Written By: D.J. McGuire
Either (a) Olmert is being suckered, or (b) Olmert is manufacturing reasons for not attacking Iran (i.e. the diplomatic process has prospects for success).

When Olmert decided to cave in Gaza and then Lebanon he lied about it at every turn, and to this day declares the latter a great victory over Hezbollah. Olmert’s approach to Iran and its nukes is no different, and in that respect he is of one mind with a Bush administration which has spent the last five years doing precisely nothing to depose the mullahs, prevent Iran from killing hundreds maybe thousands of our troops in Iraq or stop Iran’s nuclear program. Small wonder the Administration, in a naked attempt to select Israel’s next leader, invited Olmert to the White House when he was a candidate.

China, Iran and Venezuela have formed an aggressive military political axis that is spreading destabilization and outright war from the Mideast to Latin America. That’s the reality; everything else is fluff and posturing.
Written By: Lastango
URL: http://
Chinese support Israel’s rights in their ancient homeland.

Chinese and Jews are both very ancient peoples. We both understand the spirit of collectivism. Chinese appreciate the many Jewish communist thinkers in history.

Chinese and Jews are targeted by the same skinhead groups.

China is the only major nation on earth to not have anti-semitism. Jews are persecuted everywhere on Earth, but in China they are welcomed for their decency, character, and scholarship.

Israel-China have the strongest basis for long lasting friendship, on this dangerous and hostile planet to our peoples.
Written By: goldenpanda
URL: http://

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