China's silk road


February 24, 2016 By Joseph P. Farrell

Catherine Austin Fitts shares this one, and it's worth passing along, for it is huge with economic and, more importantly, geopolitical significance. As you read this, compare China's approach in the region, to the USAs:

The ancient ‘Silk Road’ is back in business as new train connects China to Tehran

Now if you've been following this story, and China's ambitious plans (and let's not forget, Russia's as well), to expand the rail networks in central Asia, Siberia, and (in Russia's case), across the northern reaches of Eurasia in the Arctic, this will posisbly come as a surprise, for the links are being built, and now, used. And the usage is huge with geopolitical significance.

With that in mind, there's a significant statement in this article:

The first train connecting Iran and China loaded with Chinese goods arrived in Tehran Monday, reviving the ancient Silk Road trade route and highlighting the economic possibilities for Iran since the lifting of international sanctions, AFP reports. The 5,900-mile trip from eastern Zhejiang province took 14 days, or 30 days less than a typical sea voyage between Shanghai and the Iranian port of Bandar Abbas, according to the head of the Iranian railway company, Mohsen Pourseyed Aqayi. (Emphasis added)

The key here is the relative quickness and ease, not to mention cost effectiveness, of moving goods by rail(and one may assume, eventually a linked road and highway network as well), between China and Europe. Effectively, this is a huge offset to American sea power and its ability to interdict trade if necessary; it's an end run around that power, and a direct challenge to the principal feature of Anglo-American geopolitics for more than a century, which has been to prevent precisely the formation of such a huge trade zone circumventing its naval power and the trade and empire built from it. Think George Orwell's "Oceania" here.

China's approach is a long term "soft power" approach, one in almost direct contrast to the American destablization efforts in the region. China builds railroads, ships goods, and America drops bombs and drones. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out which approach will win friends and influence people in the long run.

But this also means that Chinese military power can also be swiftly projected into the region, if need be. Of course, rail lines are as subject to interdiction as sea lanes, but the problem here for the strategists of "Oceania" is that the land powers of the region, China and Russia, are not the same thing as the smaller nations the American military is used to bullying. And this means, inevitably, that China will play a role in the Middle East, if only to ensure the stability of its investments. In the light of last Thursday's News and Views on F. William Engdahl's assessments of American strategy in the region, That strategy, as he outlined it, was to create massive instability in the region, and indeed, perhaps it is a strategy designed to upset the plans of China. Indeed, if Middle eastern oil is jeopardized by regional conflict, this will only hurt CHina, and fuel American domestic production once again, which has been hurt by the recent low oil prices. China, conversely, will seek stability in the region, and to project its power eastward into the Pacific, and to develop Russian energy resources even more.

The "grand chessboard" just became very interesting. What's the next step for Russia and China? Watch the "stans" of Central Asia...

See you on the flip side...