Political Games and the Beijing Olympics: who are the opponents with whom?
Russian and Chinese Foreign Ministers Sergei Lavrov and Wang Yi at a meeting in Beijing advocated further sealing of joint efforts on the world stage.
According to the journalist of The Moscow Post, in the light of the efforts of the United States and its allies to create narrow-block structures in the region, Sergey Lavrov and Wang Yi also discussed the situation in Afghanistan, the Korean Peninsula and the Asia-Pacific region.
The visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to China at the invitation of Chinese President Xi Jinping to participate in the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympic Games on February 4 looks like a sign of mutual respect, demonstrates a high level of political confidence. This is a symbol of a growing relationship of comprehensive partnership and strategic interaction. Negotiations of leaders should take a place in the history of bilateral relations that goes beyond the festive event.
Spirit for cooperation
In article published in the run-up to Vladimir Putin's visit to Beijing will emphasize a spirit for cooperation. It is noted that a strategic problem of Russia - the accelerated development of Siberia and the Far East, adjoining to China. Hopes are also pinned on development of interregional communications, adjustment and expansion of transport and trade ways, attraction to Russia of the Chinese investments and technologies.
"Russia and China — powers with thousand-year original traditions and enormous cultural property, interest in which and in our countries, and abroad permanently high" — the President of Russia wrote.
He noted that Russia is adjusted to strengthen business connections with China. In 2021, trade between the Russian Federation and the People's Republic of China grew more than by a third, exceeded 140 billion dollars. The task to bring its volume to 200 billion dollars a year is set.
Vladimir Putin also emphasized the growing role of Russia and the People's Republic of China in stabilization of a world situation due to coordination of foreign policy which "is based on close, coinciding approaches to the solution of global and regional problems", they promote processes of democratization of a system of the interstate relations, give "to this system more fair, inclusive character".
Vladimir Putin also noted value of the Contract on neighborliness, friendship and cooperation signed more than 20 years ago. This basic program document laid the legal foundation for long-term and stable development of the Russian-Chinese relations, comprehensive partnership and strategic interaction.
Politicians don't wait for "The Olympic break"
Beijing tied Games to a holiday of spring, New year according to the lunar calendar, spent about 4 billion dollars for preparation. China was preparing long and carefully, as for shows. But the collective West announced to the Olympic Games diplomatic boycott. Beijing should resist to waves of violent anti-Chinese promotion, including comparison of the Olympic Games in Beijing with games of 1936 in Berlin. The West, remembering the civilization ulcers and aggression, attributes these qualities to the victims of aggression!
Information storm around Games in Beijing occurs around far-fetched problems. It was said by the Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova. According to the diplomat, the western countries were occupied with the fact that asked questions, "which of official delegations will join boycott who will go to China".
Games were boycotted by U.S. authorities, they were supported by Great Britain, Canada, Australia, Lithuania and Kosovo. To Beijing there won't go representatives of Japan and Germany who didn't boycott, but invitations left without answer.
Provocations in connection with Games became a part of the campaign aimed both at Russia, and to China. In particular, on January 22 the Bloomberg agency with reference to the diplomat in Beijing reported that the Chinese President Xi Jinping "could ask" the president Vladimir Putin "not to interfere to Ukraine during the Olympic Games". News caused indignation reaction. "It is not a fake any more, it is information special operation of the relevant American services", - Maria Zakharova, the Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson said.
In Kiev, the commander Operatsiyey of the integrated forces of AFU Alexander Pavlyuk in an interview of The Times called on February 20 "date of invasion" of Russia. According to the Ukrainian lieutenant general, one of the reasons for which Russia will attack this day, the end of the Olympic Games in Beijing is.
Different, but similar problems
Negotiations of leaders of Russia and China in Beijing took place in conditions of strain of relations with the West.
For Beijing – it is speculation of the USA, Japan, other allies concerning alleged actions of the People's Republic of China concerning Taiwan as autonomous island Chinese province. Beijing intends to settle the problems in the relations with Taipei without intervention and the conflict to which the USA pushes, supplying the island with weapon.
For Moscow – it is independent Ukraine which incorporated a considerable part of the territory of historical Russia. Threats of the West concerning the Russian "plans of invasion" into this country which independence was "presented" to Kiev by the soviet and Russian government in 1922-92 are added to old problems in the relations with the USA and NATO. Moscow standing at a headboard of the Ukrainian statehood offers normalization through negotiations and performance of the Minsk package of measures. Washington predicts the conflict, supplies AFU with weapon.
Thus, speculation of the USA on these, in fact, "family" problems, became a part of the bilateral Russian-Chinese agenda. Moscow and Beijing see in the White House of the material carrier of "a tension virus" to the regions having key value for their national security. Both countries in different forms and at different times urged the USA to refuse provocative actions, forcing of tension on the European continent, near the Taiwan Strait, in the western part of the Pacific Ocean. Conditionally speaking, on the line from Chukotka to Hainan.
Ukrainian labyrinths of Washington
It is difficult to understand what Washington would like more. Everything looks as if President Joe Biden, warning of an "attack" on Ukraine, intends to dissuade Vladimir Putin from such a step. The threat of economic sanctions, as he would like to show, should affect Moscow's intentions. Avoiding the escalation of the internal armed conflict in Ukraine into a hot phase with the possible involvement of Russia in the conflict means demonstrating the influence of the owner of the White House, the effectiveness of the American deterrence policy.
Biden will be remembered for his "peaceful denouement" as a merit. But this will not give radical changes in the situation, the results of the strategy of containing Russia will be stretched over time. Negotiations on security issues with Moscow will continue.
A radical, "military option" to get out of the crisis could give broad powers to pressure Moscow on all fronts, including the toughest isolation measures, other pressure tools "here and now." But such an aggravation can lead not only to the breakdown of relations, but also of treaties and negotiations. It may accelerate, as Washington fears, Russia's military-political rapprochement with China, close the way to agreements in Europe, and may provoke economic problems for the United States itself. Ukraine for Washington may be completely lost.
The East is growing, and the West is plagued with fool
The West believes that China should closely monitor Biden's actions in Ukraine. Beijing supports Moscow's demands for legally formalized security guarantees. Safeguards to end uncertainties that divert from domestic needs. Clearly, the overall long-term goal of coordinating the interests of Russia and China in East Asia and the Western Pacific is to counter the policy of deterrence pursued by the collective West towards them.
One of the directions of this policy in theory involves "deterrence by denial," namely, building obstacles that undermine the conditions for the implementation of the opponent's plans and creating additional threats. Examples of such barriers and threats are sanctions and alliances, including the QUAD strategic dialogue, the AUKUS tripartite bloc, the US-Japan Security Treaty.
Western observers and the media talk about how the US response to the Ukrainian crisis could affect the situation around Taiwan. How will Washington respond to the Taiwan Strait crisis? In this case, "sofa advisers" are considering another approach - "deterrence by punishment." In this scenario, the matter is not limited to large-scale economic sanctions, it is possible to deploy large American military forces around Taiwan, nuclear escalation to block the "seizure of the island by China."
Some "bright minds" suggested: if Beijing invades the island, then as a "deterrent by punishment," Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co, the world's largest chip manufacturer, can be destroyed.
There is something to talk about
How things will go in Europe and Ukraine is still difficult to say. Vladimir Putin said at a meeting with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban that the United States "basically ignored" Russia's fears, including demands for NATO to exclude expansion, abandon the deployment of offensive weapons on Russia's borders, and return Alliance forces and infrastructure to the 1997 borders.
Two days before Vladimir Putin's visit, Spanish El País published texts of "confidential" documents - US and NATO responses to Russia's proposals for security guarantees. From the point of view of the interests of Russia and China in the space "from Chukotka to Hainan," the content of the "Washington answer" may also be of interest. And that's why.
The contingent of the US armed forces of more than 30 thousand marines and flight personnel regularly conducts exercises with the armed forces of South Korea. This happens not only "in the neighborhood" of the DPRK, but also near the borders of China and Russia. The reasons are the "threat" of Pyongyang, imposed by sanctions, North Korea's nuclear missile program.
The DPRK's nuclear missile potential can threaten not only the security interests of Japan and South Korea, but also the United States itself. Even putting aside the history of the Korean Peninsula, the period of Japanese colonial rule, the post-war decades of US dominance in southern Korea, one cannot but see: the DPRK is set in conditions where Pyongyang has nothing left, how to restrain the United States and allies with a "threat of punishment," even at the cost of its existence.
Toothless Tiger Fangs
In December 2021, exercises involving thousands of soldiers were held in Hokkaido, 43 km from Sakhalin through the Laperuza Strait and 25 km from the island of Kunashir. Thus, Japan also continues to fuel the confrontation in Korea. Tokyo is taking part in this remotely. Japan has also abandoned peaceful coexistence with China and is increasing military capabilities.
According to the Air Force, the "self-defense" forces of Japan are a "toothless tiger." The facts tell us something else. By the size of the military budget, Japan is in sixth place in the world. The Japanese Navy "self-defense," tightly integrated with the US Navy in the region, can compete with the Pacific Fleet of the Russian Federation and the Chinese Navy.
American Marine Corps, Navy and Air Force bases on its territory deserve attention. The total number of US Armed Forces (USFJ) in Japan reaches 50 thousand. The area of bases and facilities in Okinawa covers about 8% of the prefecture area and about 14% of the island of Okinawa. Japan's ground "self-defense forces" are comparable to those of France and Great Britain. Prime Minister Fumio Kisida is ready to double the country's military spending, bring it to 2% of GDP, NATO standard.
Shines of the "Washington response" in Asia
Beijing understands and supports Moscow's position in negotiations with Washington and NATO on security issues, the Chinese Foreign Minister said. Beijing and Moscow agreed to deepen cooperation within the framework of the SCO, BRICS, the UN and in the format "Russia - India - China," are committed to supporting regional and international security.
The first proposals of the "Washington response" report that to strengthen security, the United States "is preparing for further work to achieve mutual understanding," saying that they "are ready to consider agreements or agreements with Russia on issues of concern to both parties." The United States is also "ready to discuss mutual obligations...," "open to discuss security issues of concern to Russia, the United States, our allies and partners."
Washington agreed that the principle of indivisibility of security is on the agenda. The time will come and the United States will have to discuss this principle in relation to the situation in Northeast Asia. In a region where China, Russia, both Korea and Japan are neighbors. Here, as in Europe, the United States also found its interests, clinging to them clingily, threatening three out of five countries. And you have to look for an end and negotiate.