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Why should Beijing act altruistically toward a state that has shown no compunction about bullying its weaker neighbors?
As the Crimea annexation and the Russian war against Ukraine have demonstrated, Moscow has embarked on the path of undermining the international legal system and stressing its right to maintain spheres of influence.
Russia’s cyber hacking, meddling in elections and fake news could be deemed acts of aggression by Nato, Britain’s most senior officer in the alliance warned yesterday.
General Sir Adrian Bradshaw said Article 5 of the Nato charter – in which an attack on one member state is an attack on all – could apply to unconventional forms of warfare.
This transformation has angered a host of Middle Eastern governments, from Egypt to Iran, and Iraq to the U. Indeed, it was within this geopolitical context that Ankara’s ambassador to Doha announced plans last year to establish a joint Turkish-Qatari military base in Qatar.
At the heart of Turkey’s subsequent political and military agreement with Doha is a public recognition that both states face common enemies, sponsor the same non-state actors, have similar reactions to numerous regional crises, and ultimately share several long-term objectives.
China’s land-reclamation projects in the South China Sea and its nautical forays into the waters of Vietnam prove that Beijing and Moscow might as well be reading from the same playbook.
Isn’t it only natural and expected that Beijing’s revisionist tendencies would also extend to the Russian Far East?
This very asymmetry makes the relationship fragile, creating impetus for the stronger partner to use the weaker one to serve its interests.
Even more important is the fact that Russia and China are at different stages of development.
Russia is in decline, and its current regime appears to have entered an agony that threatens to pull the country down into confusion and turmoil.
To this end, Institute for Policy Studies fellow Farrah Hassen described Bush’s Syria policy as “nutty” and blames his administration for isolating Damascus.
This approach takes a dangerously short view of history.
But if the recent Chinese financial crash is a sign of China’s looming economic plunge, the symmetry of the two authoritarian giants falling down (albeit at different speeds) could propel them into a most disastrous struggle with one another for survival.