China's maritime silk road to oil : influence in the Middle East through naval modernization
Dumlao, Roberto C.
Miller, H. Lyman
Sepp, Kalev I.
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This thesis explores the prospect of a PRC naval role in the Persian Gulf by 2025 and its implications for the United States Navy, focusing in particular on Beijing's evolving relationship with Iran. Since the last years of the Cold War, China's relationships with the United States and Russia have improved significantly, and China no longer sees these former adversaries as imminent threats. As a result, the People's Liberation Army (PLA) has shifted its strategy from a defensive posture to a forward-looking one. Concurrently, economic developments and progress have raised China's aspirations to become the new regional power in Asia. As such, the PRC's economic sustainability will depend greatly on imported oil. The Persian Gulf will be a strategic focus for China in the near future.