Military alliance

Russia-China military alliance talks intensify to counter U.S. Pacific plans

Russian officials and state media have suggested that Moscow may form a military alliance with Beijing and Delhi in response to claims that Washington is attempting to form a military bloc against Russia.

RIA Novosti, a state-owned outlet, reported on Monday that Washington had deployed hundreds of thousands of military, carrier strike groups and warplanes to the Asia-Pacific region, which would become “a NATO analogue in Asia”.

The report said the block, although intended to contain China, “will also seriously affect Russian security.”

“They need a large block that would cover the entire western part of the Pacific,” said doctor of military sciences Konstantin Sivkov.

“Of course, this threatens Russia. After all, everything is happening on our eastern borders. US actions could lead to the creation of a Russian-Chinese military alliance. The question for India is to side with the Americans. , with serious enough consequences for themselves, or to support Russia. “

The report says recent movements in Asia were similar to the North Atlantic Alliance that began in the late 2000s.

Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe proposed in 2008 to organize the quadrilateral security dialogue with the participation of the United States, Japan, Australia and India in the early stages. Other Asian countries then joined, including South Korea and Vietnam, which borders China.

The United States is accelerating the formation of an anti-China coalition on the basis of the quadrilateral security dialogue, according to the report, citing the general leadership of the Russian General Staff.

He also accused the United States of “actively influencing” India.

“In addition to Australia and Japan, special importance is attached to the involvement of India in this format, which traditionally builds its foreign policy independently,” said Admiral Igor Kostyukov, head of the department. chief intelligence officer of the Russian General Staff.

To woo Delhi, US lawmakers will have to “play on long-standing Indo-Chinese contradictions,” Novosti Konstantin Sokolov, correspondent member of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences, told RIA.

“There is nothing unexpected about it. India and China are the main ones in the region, the others have a supporting role. And the goal of the United States, as always, is to fight with someone else’s hands, not to waste theirs. Military support, security, including information, is a side issue, “he said.

Sokolov said he had no doubts that such a military bloc would have negative consequences for Moscow. “We are historically on good terms with China and India,” he said.

During the Moscow Conference on International Security on June 23, Kostyukov warned that Washington plans to deploy the first operational fleet in the Asia-Pacific region by 2024, operating in the eastern Indian Ocean.

The official said the move would free up the resources of the Operational 7th Fleet and focus it on solving problems in the East China and South China Seas, thereby strengthening Washington’s presence in the region.

The 7th Fleet is the largest of the forward deployed fleets of the US Navy and its area of ​​operation spans over 124 million square kilometers, from the International Date Line to the Indo-Pakistan border and from the Kuril Islands in the north to Antarctica in the south.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (left) shakes hands with Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi before a meeting of foreign ministers and officials of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) at Diaoyutai State Guest House on April 24, 2018 in Beijing, China. There is more and more talk of a Russian-Sino alliance against the West.
Madoka Ikegami / Getty

Earlier this month, NATO leaders for the first time called on China and Russia for their military aggression.

However, in their final 14,400-word communiqué, there was a mention of military cooperation: China “is also cooperating militarily with Russia, including participating in Russian exercises in the Euro-Atlantic area,” the statement said.

A senior NATO officer told the Financial Time in an interview published on June 25, China’s military development and growing diplomatic influence were “shocking.”

After meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on March 23, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov called Moscow-Beijing relations “unique” and characterized by “comprehensive partnership and strategic interaction. “.

US defense officials are divided over military relations between Moscow and Beijing.

“I see a superficial cooperation at best. I think it’s higher at the tactical level, soldier to soldier, and I think it’s pretty close to the bogus at the strategic level,” said the head of US European Command. Gen. Tod Wolters told the Senate Armed Services Committee in April.

Admiral Philip Davidson, head of the US Indo-Pacific Command until April, told the committee in March that he saw “some collaboration” between Russia and China in “the tactical and operational space.”

He added that he had seen it “with some concern”.

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