Afghanistan Takes Center Stage in the New Great Game. All-Asian solution. No Western invaders welcome | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


Afghanistan Takes Center Stage in the New Great Game. All-Asian solution. No Western invaders welcome

...What matters most for China is Afghanistan becoming part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). That’s exactly what Chinese envoy Yao Jing told the opening session of the 4th Trilateral Dialogue in Islamabad earlier this week between China, Pakistan and Afghanistan. “Kabul can act as a bridge to help expand connectivity between East, South and Central Asian regions,” Jing said. Pakistani Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed said: “The Greater South Asia has emerged as a geo-economic concept, driven by economy and energy, roads and railways and ports and pipelines, and Pakistan is the hub of this connectivity due to CPEC.” For Beijing, CPEC can only deliver its enormous potential if Pakistan and India relations are normalized. And that road goes right through Afghanistan. China has been aiming for an opening for years. Chinese intel operatives have met the Taliban everywhere from Xinjiang to Karachi and from Peshawar to Doha. The China card is immensely alluring. Beijing is the only player capable of getting along with all the other major actors: Kabul, the Taliban, the former Northern Alliance, Iran, Russia, Central Asia, the US, the EU, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and – last but not least – “all-weather” brothers Pakistan. The only problem is India. But now, inside the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), they are all on the same table – with Iran and Afghanistan itself as observers. Everyone knows that an Afghan Pax Sinica would involve tons of investment, connectivity and trade integration. What’s not to like? So this is the ultimate goal of the ongoing Moscow peace talks. It’s part of a concerted SCO strategy that has been discussed for years. The long and winding road is just starting. A Russia-China-driven peace process, Taliban included. Stable Afghanistan. Islamabad as guarantor. All-Asian solution. No Western invaders welcome.

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