A senior Pentagon official warned on Tuesday that Middle Eastern countries that deeper security cooperation with China or Russia would jeopardize their partnerships with the United States.
“It is … clear that certain countries and partners want to hedge and test what more they could get from the United States by testing the waters of deeper cooperation with the Chinese or the Russians, particularly in the security and military areas.” said Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Dana Stroul during a webinar at the Middle East Institute.
“And I just want to warn you again that there is a point where it will feed into strategies that not only threaten your partnership with the United States, but actually threaten your national sovereignty in countries like Lebanon.”
Stroul claimed that the potential benefits of working with Russia and China pale compared to what the United States can offer in terms of security cooperation.
“For me, the choice is clear between what you get from China or Russia and what you get from the US,” she said.
Stroul accused Russia of having intentions to challenge the United States in the Middle East and highlighted its strategic regional partnerships.