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News :: War and Militarism
Iraq, Iran, China, Talabani, the Kurds, and Israel
07 Jul 2007
Modified: 08 Jul 2007
While U.S. forces continue to surge China achieves a diplomatic coup with Iraq expanding its influence and protecting its investments in Iran.
US concerns over China weapons in Iraq
By Demetri Sevastopulo in Washington
Published: July 6 2007 22:01 | Last updated: July 6 2007 22:01, Financial Times

The US has raised concerns with the Chinese government about the discovery of Chinese-made weapons in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Richard Lawless, departing senior Pentagon official for Asia, on Friday said Washington had flagged the issue with Beijing. In recent months, the US has become increasingly alarmed that Chinese armour-piercing ammunition has been used by the Taliban in Afghanistan and insurgents in Iraq.
A senior US official recently told the FT that Iran appeared to be providing the Chinese-made weapons. He said Washington had no evidence that Beijing was complicit, but stressed that the US would like China to “do a better job of policing these sales”. Mr Lawless said the question of origin was less important than who was facilitating the transfer.
The concerns about Chinese weapons follow months of allegations from US officials that Iran is helping attack US troops in Iraq, and more recently Afghanistan, by providing technology for bombs that can destroy Humvees and other heavily armoured US vehicles.

More at:

It suspect the Financial Times didn't get the memo from Talabani.

Talabani: China to Arm Iraqi Police

Iraqi President Jalal Talbani said on June 27 that Beijing has agreed to sell weapons to the country’s fledgling police force.
“We have signed an agreement to buy Chinese weapons for our police at a cheaper price,” Talabani told reporters on his return from a week-long visit to China, without providing further details.
Iraq’s police are frequent targets of a Sunni-led insurgency engulfing the country since the downfall of Saddam Hussein in 2003.
Talabani also said Beijing had agreed to cancel some of the $8 billion worth of debt accrued by Saddam Hussein’s regime, but it was not immediately clear how much the deal involves.
Beijing has also agreed to train around 600 Iraqi science professionals, said Talabani, who stopped off in Tehran before returning to Iraq.
China wants to resurrect oil supply agreements signed with the previous regime and develop an oil field in southeast Iraq.
Talabani was the first Iraqi head of state to visit China since the two countries established diplomatic ties in 1958.

So do you think maybe the Kurdish networks that extend across Iran may be sampling some Chinese product on U.S. troops? Talabani is a Kurd and his primary loyalty is to the Kurds. Seymore Hersh in a New Yorker article mentioned that the IDF was actively involved in training the Kurds:

"Israeli intelligence and military operatives are now quietly at work in Kurdistan, providing training for Kurdish commando units and, most important in Israel’s view, running covert operations inside Kurdish areas of Iran and Syria. Israel feels particularly threatened by Iran, whose position in the region has been strengthened by the war. The Israeli operatives include members of the Mossad, Israel’s clandestine foreign-intelligence service, who work undercover in Kurdistan as businessmen and, in some cases, do not carry Israeli passports."

Claims of weapons smuggled in from Iran may be true when you consider that the IDF trained Iranian Kurds could very well be handling the cargo. Kurdistan if it were to exist would extend into Iran, Syria, and Turkey and take up a good bit of northern Iraq. Kurdish communities have well developed cross border networks.

China Agrees on Exemption of Iraqi Debt
2007-06-21 20:13:04 Xinhua

Chinese, Iraqi Presidents Meet in Beijing
China and Iraq on Thursday signed four agreements in Beijing, including one about exemption of Iraqi debt, as Iraqi President Jalal Talabani pays his state visit to China.

Chinese President Hu Jintao and Talabani attended the signing ceremony of the agreements after they held one-hour talks in the Great Hall of People.

But no further information is available about how much Iraqi debt owed to China will be forgiven.

The other three agreements involve cooperation between the two foreign ministries, economic and technical cooperation, human resources training program.

Talabani arrived in Beijing Wednesday evening, starting the first China visit by a Iraqi president since the two countries forged diplomatic ties in 1958.

I'm sure the Chinese debt forgiveness came with some strings which are made apparent in the three additional agreements which involve diplomatic cooperation with China, economic and technical cooperation which is a catch all for buy or products, military technology included (this will tend to offset the cancelled debt) and a human resources training program.

The Israelis who have been playing both sides of the fence all along when you study their history of turning over U.S. military technology to China. So we have the Israelis working the Kurds, China is working the Kurds and China is working Israel.

This is a diplomatic coup for China which seeks to protect its very large investment in Iran by quietly shouldering the U.S. to the sidelines as a political player.

Seymor Hersh quote from:

Plan B
As June 30th approaches, Israel looks to the Kurds.
by Seymour M. Hersh
The New Yorker - June 28, 2004

Background on China's Iranian investments:

China Rocks the Geopolitical Boat
by Kaveh L Afrasiabi
Asia Times - Nov 6, 2004

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