China’s plans to build a military base in Djibouti could be the first step toward Beijing’s deeper involvement in Africa – a strategy that should make the United States "very nervous," according to journalist James Poulos.
Last year, China began talks with Djibouti to install a "logistics hub" and airfield in the east African nation.
"Over the past few years both countries’ friendly cooperative relationship has kept on developing, and in all areas there is practical cooperation," Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun told reporters in June.
The United States, which also has military installations in Djibouti, raised concerns about China’s expanding sphere of influence. According to James Poulos, writing for The Week, Washington is right to be worried.
"Thanks to the much different challenges and priorities facing both powers, African intervention is shaping up as a feast for China and a famine for the US," Poulos writes.
Djibouti’s geostrategic location along the Red Sea, as well as its stable government, make it an ideal spot for both the US and China.
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