Salman Rafi Sheikh

The Geopolitics of the US-Iran Rapprochement


The US push to revive the JCPOA with Iran has accelerated in the wake of the Russian military operation in Ukraine. As many reports have indicated, the ongoing talks in Vienna are very close to a successful outcome. As other reports have also indicated, the US is also willing to lift sanctions on Iran, including removing the Revolutionary Guards’ designation…

The Middle East and the US ‘War of Sanctions’ on Russia


While the US has so far been able to cobble together the crumbling trans-Atlantic ‘unity’ by aggressively, provocatively and irresponsibly pushing for NATO’s expansion into Eastern Europe purportedly against Russia, the Middle East – which was once a completely US dominated geography – has refused to side with the US. Due to Washington’s own poor relationships…

How the US Expands the European Conflict to China


The US has been using war and geo-political conflicts to advance its global influence more explicitly than any other state for the past three decades or so. The Russia-Ukraine conflict – which is primarily an outcome of the same US strategy and stands to bring the US some tangible benefits – is yet another opportunity for Washington to use to expand the ambit…

How America will Make Money from War in Europe


When the US President Joe Biden announced, on March 8, his decision to ban imports of Russian oil and gas to the US, he opened up a potential business opportunity for the US LNG gas business to expand further into Europe and beyond. While Biden’s decision does not automatically apply to Europe, given how Europe is mindlessly following the US in its footsteps…

US is Now Provoking Taiwan


Expansionism knows no bounds. After taking Europe to the verge of a major war by pushing for NATO’s expansion further into Eastern Europe to encircle Russia, the US is now increasingly focusing on Taiwan for what the US officials have been, for over a year now, calling an ‘increasing possibility’ of a Chinese invasion of Taiwan. There is a flurry of activity going on around Taiwan to prevent it from suffering…

The Biden Administration Steals Afghanistan’s Money


After keeping it under direct occupation, destroying the country for 20 years – and failing to militarily defeat the Taliban (banned in Russia) – Joe Biden’s executive order to simply seize half of Afghanistan’s little over US$7 billion to use it to pay to the victims of 9/11 is just a mockery of the “values” that the US always claims to hold. With the world’s richest…

Sanctions on Russia Cost the US More Than it Thinks


For more than many weeks now, many Western leaders have been calling for blocking Russia out of the SWFIT payment system. The UK’s Boris Johnson thinks that this is a potentially good way of ‘punishing’ Russia. But the US/EU have not blocked Russia out of this global payments system yet. There are two reasons for this ‘reluctnace.’ First, even if the West decides…

Diagnosis: Why the China Containment Policy is Failing


For the past 4 years – especially since the US ‘trade war’ on China started by the Trump administration in 2017 – Washington has been seeking ways to contain, roll-back on its gains and encircle China. The US ‘trade war’ was not something entirely new; in fact, it was a continuation of the Obama administration’s ‘Asia Pivot’ that focused on shifting…

Sino-Russia Energy Deals to Defeat US/NATO Expansionism


While the recent meeting between Russia’s Vladimir Putin and China’s Xi in Beijing may not in itself be an extra-ordinary event, its significance against the backdrop of the on-going tussle between Russia and the US/NATO is quite unmistakable – not only for Russia itself, but for the US/NATO as well. Even though Russia does not really need China’s help to defend…

Blinken’s Asia-Pacific Tour: Fighting the War by Other Means


Soon after releasing the new anti-China Indo-Pacific strategy, the US secretary of state Antony Blinken embarked upon a significant tour to countries in Asia and the Pacific to reassure these countries of the US commitment – and ability – to protect and defend them against an ‘aggressive’ China. Even though US officials have been saying…

Washington Rolls Out a ‘New’ Approach to Encircling China


The Joe Biden administration’s ‘new’ Indo-Pacific strategy document contains nothing ‘new’ insofar as the cardinal objective of this strategy is concerned i.e., ‘encircling China.’ Interestingly enough, the strategy has been revealed despite the Biden administration’s various rhetorical claims that the administration is not seeking to build up a global coalition against China, or that…

Why Would Washington Assist the Afghan Taliban?


When the US decided to withdraw its military forces from Afghanistan in mid-2021, Joe Biden assured his Afghan counterpart, Ashraf Ghani, of full US support against the Taliban (banned in Russia) to preserve the so-called “democratic” gains the country made during twenty years of US occupation. Evidence that we have previously examined clearly indicates that the US…

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