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The U.S. Should Avoid the ‘China Trap’ in the Middle East

Chinese President Xi Jinping walks with then-Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan of Abu Dhabi at the Presidential Palace in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, July 20, 2018 (AP photo by Malak Harb).

U.S. President Joe Biden, who came into office seeking to do “less not more” in the Middle East, is increasingly using the focus on China as an excuse to again do more in the region. But using the “great power competition” frame to justify and shape U.S. engagement in the Middle East is unrealistic and likely counterproductive.

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