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China and Iran

Ancient Partners in a Post-Imperial World

by John W. Garver

Publication Year: 2006

Published by: University of Washington Press


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pp. v

List of Illustrations

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pp. vii-viii

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Preface and Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-xii

A study of Sino-Iranian relations is timely because those countries play important roles in two of the most important regions of the world--the energy-rich Persian Gulf and the economic dynamo of East Asia. China is a rising global power and Iran is perhaps the strongest state in the Persian Gulf. The growing global demand for oil, and China's role in generating that demand and Iran's and the Persian Gulf's role in supplying that ...

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1. The Spirit of Sino-Iranian Relations: Civilization and Power

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pp. 3-28

When delving into Sino-Iranian relations, one quickly encounters an abundance of rhetoric about ancient civilizations, millennia of friendly interactions, common oppression at Western hands, and so on. One also encounters expressions of esteem for the other's influence. What is one to make of this rhetoric? Should it be set aside, and relations explained entirely in terms of concrete interests? It is clear there existed such ...

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2. The PRC--Kingdom of Iran Relationship, 1971-78

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pp. 29-56

Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the shah or king of Iran from 1941 to 1979, was inspired by a vision of restored Iranian greatness. In this vision, Iran was to be a prosperous, industrialized, welfare state with formidable economic and military power. Iran's enhanced power would enable it to deal effectively with challenges to Iranian interests in the Persian Gulf ...

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3. Revolutionary Iran and Postrevolutionary China, 1979-88

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pp. 57-94

The Iranian revolution was one of the profound social revolutions of the twentieth century: an uprising of the nonelite masses of ordinary people toppling the institutions that had dominated society for many decades. During the second half of 1978, street demonstrations against the shah and his regime grew in size and militancy. Numerous groups and factions took part in those demonstrations, or supported them from the ...

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4. Sino-Iranian Partnership and Post-Cold War U.S. Unipolar Preeminence, 1989-2004

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pp. 95-128

Several factors came together circa 1989 to produce closer Sino-Iranian relations. The end of the Iran-Iraq war in August 1988 allowed Iran to turn to the task of economic construction, thereby opening new vistas for Sino-Iranian cooperation. The death of Ayatollah Khomeini on June 3, 1989, strengthened demands within Iran for improved living conditions after long war years of scarcity, while ushering in a period of increased ...

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5. The Xinjiang Factor in PRC-IRI Relations

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pp. 129-138

A significant variable influencing IRI-PRC relations has been Iranian involvement with China's Muslim communities. The impulse of Islamic revolutionaries in Iran to support the struggles of their putatively oppressed Muslim brethren in foreign lands, including China, has occasionally come into conflict with Chinese Communist Party (CCP) internal security concerns especially in China's sprawling western province of Xinjiang. ...

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6. China's Assistance to Iran's Nuclear Programs

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pp. 139-165

Support for Iranian nuclear programs was a key element of Beijing's effort to forge a partnership with Iran in the 1980s and 1990s. From 1985 to 1997 China was Iran's major nuclear partner. While China was not Iran's only foreign nuclear partner during that period, it was by far the most important. During that period, China in effect assisted Iran in circumventing u.s.- led international opposition to Iran's nuclear efforts. Iranian leaders viewed ...

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7. China and Iran's Military Development Efforts

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pp. 166-200

China has consistently assisted the military development of the Islamic Republic of Iran. During the 1980-88 war, China became Iran's most important foreign supplier of munitions and munitions-producing capital goods. During the postwar period, first the Soviet Union and then Russia superseded China as Iran's major military supplier, but Beijing continued to be important. Throughout, Beijing refused to go along with u.s. efforts to ...

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8. China-Iran Cooperation and the United States

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pp. 201-236

During the 1970s Chinese and u.s. interests toward Iran converged. Both countries looked on Iran as a friendly power and sought to bolster it as a bulwark against Soviet influence. The Iranian revolution of 1979 ended that felicitous congruence of Chinese and u.s. interests. Henceforth, Chinese efforts to strengthen Iran clashed frequently with U.S. policy. This conflict was most acute in areas where Sino-Iranian cooperation ...

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9. The Sino-Iranian Energy-Economic Relationship

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pp. 237-280

Iran's 1979 revolution had a profound impact on Sino-Iranian economic relations. It is impossible to compare Sino-Iranian trade before and after the revolution and infer that increases were due to the change of Iranian regime because there was a profoundly important exogenous variable: China's post-1978 opening to the world and the consequent explosive growth of China's exports to all countries. In one way, however, it is clear that Iran's ...

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10. Patterns of Sino-Iranian Relations

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pp. 281-301

Americans coming to Iran-China relations in the early twenty-first century will probably ask the question, Is China a partner of the United States in the maintenance of the global order, or is it a rival of the United States seeking to establish a new, alternative world order? Does China cooperate with the United States in key policy areas involving Iran and the Middle East, or does it oppose u.s. efforts in that region in tandem with ...

Appendix / Chronology of Iran-China Relations

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pp. 303-326


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pp. 327-367


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pp. 369-387


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pp. 389-401

E-ISBN-13: 9780295801216
E-ISBN-10: 0295801212
Print-ISBN-13: 9780295986319
Print-ISBN-10: 029598631X

Publication Year: 2006