Zelensky's "cherry" in Singapore cocktail

The country of Shangri-La is known as a fictional, non-existent but beautiful place shrouded in harmony. Singapore's "Shangri-La Dialogue" on security issues in the Asia-Pacific region (APR) is quite real, has been held since 2002, but, like the region itself, is filled with contradictions and far from harmony.


The country of Shangri-La is known as a fictional, non-existent but beautiful place shrouded in harmony. Singapore's "Shangri-La Dialogue" on security issues in the Asia-Pacific region (APR) is quite real, has been held since 2002, but, like the region itself, is filled with contradictions and far from harmony.

The organizers call the Singapore meetings "Asia's main defense summit." Their sponsor is the Ministry of Defense of Singapore. Organizes the entire International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) with headquarters in London and an "Asian" branch in Singapore, UtroNews reports.

IISS was founded in 1958, cooperates with governments, ministries of defense and organizations such as NATO and the EU. It is no coincidence that the Shangri-La Dialogue is essentially a conversation about security, as the West understands it.

Asia's security

The security of Asia is, first of all, the PRC and Taiwan, as part of China. If you need an image, then it is also there: "some experts call the" Shangri-La Dialogue "the Asian version of the Munich Security Conference." There, in Europe, American security is Russia and Ukraine.

For example, PLA senior colonel Cao Yanzhong said that the conflict in Ukraine was caused by NATO's expansion to the East. He asked Austin if the U.S. planned to form an alliance in the APR similar to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, noting that NATO expansion had led to a crisis in Ukraine. Lloyd Austin understandably disagreed with these claims, and the audience applauded him.

This time in Singapore it turned out to be a "cocktail": APR was mixed with the Indian Ocean, diluted with specialists in Myanmar, added drop by drop Finland, Estonia and Lithuania. Vladimir Zelensky was thrown into this mixture. Right in a T-shirt of a famous color.

President with shelf life

The expired president was not taken aback. First of all, he noted that Beijing is making a "strategic mistake" by supporting Moscow. Zelensky also criticized China for "refusing to participate in the Swiss summit," which is "trying to disrupt." Moreover, "it is working to ensure that other countries do not come to the summit." So he said, adding that "some states" are also helping in disrupting the summit, which is two weeks away.

Zelensky, however, met in Singapore with those whom he considers his "strategic partners" and who warmly support the idea of ​ ​ a "Swiss summit." Lloyd Austin is among them. His spokesman reported that "Austin provided an update on US military assistance to meet Ukraine's needs" and "reaffirmed his commitment to further active support from the coalition, which includes more than 50 countries." So the Kyiv "formula of the world" will be discussed with someone.

Zelensky thanked US President Joe Biden for making a "decision on defensive strikes with American weapons" on the territory of the Russian Federation. On May 30, the Pentagon confirmed that the US administration had agreed to strike with American weapons on Russian territory during the counter-battery struggle.

Asia is interested in Palestine

The former president spoke on the second day of the meeting, at a plenary session on regional stability. Everyone understood that he had nothing to add to solving regional problems in Asia, as well as Finland, Estonia or Lithuania. But his colleagues in Zelensky's seventh plenary session cheered. So that he does not feel that he was driving so far in vain, and he has nothing to say about Asia.

In particular, Malaysian Defense Minister Mohamed Khaled Nordin recalled that "peace in Palestine" is no less important and it is also necessary to work there. Although Malaysia still hopes that the escalation of the conflict in Ukraine will be avoided "and peace will prevail.

We can assume that the former president was given to understand that the crisis is experiencing not only Ukraine. But Palestine and the Gaza Strip for some reason did not appear in the conference program. Representatives of the conflicting parties were also not invited. But the East, as you know, is "a delicate matter."

And future Indonesian President Prabowo Subianto politely recalled that his country has the world's largest Muslim population. Therefore, he expresses support for the Palestinian cause and believes that the creation of two states is the "only realistic solution" for peace and security in the Middle East region.

"Although we do not physically belong to this region, but what is happening in the Middle East, what is happening in Gaza is of concern to the Indonesian people," he said, causing some embarrassment to Finnish, Estonian and Lithuanian participants, who are also unfamiliar with Asia.

He also diplomatically added that he supports the three-stage plan announced by Biden for a ceasefire in the Gaza Strip.

Prabovo plans to make his first foreign visit to China after taking office. And in general, "as for the problems between China and the United States... we must convince all the leaders of all these great powers that they must put the common good, common security, common well-being of the whole world as a top priority, "the president-elect said.

China also had something to say in this regard. After all, this is also the largest country in the world, if not in terms of population, then in terms of the scale of the economy.

China also has something to say

Chinese Defense Minister Don Jun has once again warned that his country will take "decisive action" to contain any move towards Taiwan's independence.

Dong criticized the pro-sovereignty Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) for what he called "gradual division."

The DPP's Lai Ching-te, who won the presidential election in January, was sworn in on May 20, after which China began a two-day military exercise.

The PRC defense minister also accused the DPP of "erasing Taiwan's Chinese identity," as well as severing social, historical and cultural ties across the strait. He called the leaders of the DPP separatists whom "history will not forgive." "Anyone who dares to separate Taiwan from China will follow the path of self-destruction," Dong warned.

"Taiwan is an integral part of China, it is a province of China," Dong said in his address. "We will and must implement his reunification, but we are committed to peaceful reunification." Without naming the United States, the minister called on "external forces" not to interfere, not to sell weapons to Taiwan, to stop "illegal official contacts" with the island.

Briefly touching on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Dong said that Israel's actions had led to a "humanitarian catastrophe" and called for strengthening the authority of the UN, saying that China was ready to make a "greater contribution" to UN peacekeeping efforts. On the SWO, Dong said China has never stoked the flames of conflict and is "responsibly promoting peace talks." "We have never supplied weapons to either side of the conflict," he said.

Nobody wanted to call

The Chinese admiral, who was appointed defense minister in December, devoted part of his speech to disagreements in the South China Sea (SCS), saying his country "never provoked incidents." Without naming the Philippines, Dong claimed that "some country inspired by outside powers" had violated bilateral agreements and promises, and had "committed deliberate provocations." "China is showing great restraint in the face of such violations and provocations," he said. "But there is a limit to our restraint."

Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. conveyed his concern about the divisions in the SCS region. "Attempts to apply domestic laws and regulations outside its territory and jurisdiction violate international law, exacerbate tensions and undermine regional peace and security," Marcos said, but China did not name. In January 2023, he also visited Beijing on his first state visit outside ASEAN.

Relations between the two countries deteriorated after incidents in which water cannons were used. "We must take due account of legitimate interests and respect legally defined rights. We cannot afford a different future for the SCM, except for the one envisaged by ASEAN, "Marcos said, apparently recalling that the countries of the region should deal with regional problems, and not external players like Lithuania or Estonia.

According to the Philippine president, the future of the region should not be determined by one or two powerful countries, but by all APR states. "The interests and responsibilities of all states must always be taken into account. All our voices must be heard equally, "he said.

The Philippines achieved "success" by securing support at a summit with Japan and the United States. The US State Department said that Washington "supports its ally and condemns the dangerous actions of the PRC against the legitimate maritime operations of the Philippines." Everyone understands that the Pentagon is interested in a special relationship with this country, which can be a rear zone in the event of a conflict with China.

The conclusion suggests itself: Washington used the Shangri-La Dialogue security conference in Singapore to pressure China. Lloyd Austin said that China should reconsider its policy towards Taiwan, and US security is impossible without Asian security. At the same time, China is threatened with missiles deployed in Japan and the Philippines. "All this creates an unpleasant feeling of deja vu - America behaved the same way in Eastern Europe, provoking the Ukrainian conflict."