Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Time Magazine Cites Yours Truly on China Iran Analysis...

...I think

In a May 26 article What Did China Get for Backing Iran Sanctions?, Time Magazine's Tony Karon, presumably obeying the commandment "thou shalt not name the competing publication or its fruits in thine own journalism", refers to the opinion of "analyst Peter Lee" without referring either to Asia Times or my article there entitled China plays lap-dog in sanctions ploy.

But I do assume he's referring to me because Karon's article provides a concise summary of my argument that China joined the Iran sanctions regime at the opportune moment so that the Obama administration might find it necessary to dilute national as well as UN sanctions in order to sustain a global united front on Iran measures.

Karon goes a step further to state:

Chinese analysts also claim that, in the course of a protracted series of negotiations with Washington, their government also won undertakings from Washington to exempt Chinese companies from any U.S. unilateral sanctions that punish third-country business partners with the Islamic Republic.

Maybe he got that from somewhere else. I didn't go that far.

In the Asia Times piece I opined that the details of the US-China UN resolution negotiations as leaked were intended to communicate China's belief that a shared understanding was reached concerning the overall scope of sanctions, including U.S. national measures.

However I didn't say that this point had been explicitly made by somebody on the Chinese side.

What I said was:

The source lays out the principles underlying China's agreement to the sanctions process, with the apparent intention that these painstakingly-negotiated conditions should be binding on the US as well as China.

These should be understood as a signal that China is asserting that the US must observe these principles not only for the drafting of the UN sanctions but in the execution of American national sanctions.

In any case, I still think my argument is sound, and I appreciate the recognition. Thanks!

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