The armies of Russia and China signed a new military pact on Tuesday, Nov. 23, to deal with what the Russian defense minister called a growing presence of U.S. bomber aircraft in the vicinity of the two countries.
During the signing of the new military pact virtually via video call, Sergei Shoigu, the Russian defense minister, and his Chinese counterpart, Wei Fenghe, agreed that it was an opportune time to increase strategic military exercises joint patrols around the growing frictions between the world powers.
“China and Russia have been strategic partners for many years,” Shoigu said, according to U.S. News. “Today, in conditions of increasing geopolitical turbulence and growing conflict potential in various parts of the world, the development of our interaction is especially relevant.”
According to Shoigu’s statements, the U.S. sent some 30 warplane missions near its border last month, flying just 20 kilometers from the Russian border simultaneously from the west and east.
He also pointed to increased flights by U.S. bombers over the Sea of Okhotsk, where they practiced launching cruise missiles, claiming that such exercises pose a threat to both Russia and China.
“In such an environment, the Russian-Chinese coordination becomes a stabilizing factor in global affairs,” Shoigu said.
As frictions increase, military alliances strengthen
Shoigu and Wei conducted maneuvers involving Russian and Chinese warplanes and naval vessels and signed a pact on military cooperation for 2021-2025.
On Friday, Nov. 19, two Russian Tu-95MS bombers and two Chinese H-6K strategic bombers conducted a joint patrol over the Sea of Japan and the South China Sea, prompting South Korea to send fighter jets.
The bomber patrol followed joint naval maneuvers by Russian and Chinese ships and aircraft in the Sea of Japan last month.
Shoigu visited China in August to attend joint war games, marking the first time Russian troops have participated in military exercises on Chinese territory.
In what some critics see as the new Cold War, both Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin in their extended tenures as leaders significantly enlarged the size, technology, and capability of their militaries as a strategy to counter alliances between the United States and other Western powers that have united in criticizing the authoritarianism of both countries. However, some argue Westerns governments target Russia only because of Putin’s anti-globalism stance.
Ukraine, Belarus, Taiwan, and the South China Sea
On Nov. 10, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken received Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba in Washington DC, where the two nations renewed their cooperation agreement.
The meeting was a sign of support from the Biden administration for Ukraine, which denounced the ‘unusual’ presence of nearly 100 thousand Russian troops and weaponry on the border, to what Blinken called a possible military preparation to invade Ukraine in the same way it did in 2014 when it annexed Crimea.
Both the European Union and NATO condemned the mobilization of Russian troops to the Ukrainian border.
On Nov. 9, Poland accused Belarus of using a caravan of Afghan migrants attempting to cross the border to destabilize Europe. The Polish prime minister even accused Putin of being behind the maneuver.
As a result, the UK sent troops to the Poland-Belarus border. The European bloc extended economic sanctions on Belarus, which threatened to cut off gas supplies passing through the country to the European continent.
During the celebrations for the anniversary of its creation on Oct. 1, the CCP sent more than 70 nuclear-capable warplanes to fly over the vicinity of Taiwan’s airspace in what was one of its latest displays of aggression on the island, which the Chinese regime assured it would ‘unify’ even if it had to use military force.
Subsequently, the European bloc and the United States sent official delegations to visit Taiwan. Although they were for different reasons, it generated the indignation of the CCP, which only succeeded in potentially increasing support for the small island in the face of its threats of invasion.
Beijing’s aggression in the South China Sea, over which it claims sovereignty, triggered powerful alliances between the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom (AUKUS), whose first measure was to arm the Australian military with nuclear-capable submarines.
Another important alliance has been formed between India, Japan, and the United States, having conducted at least two military maneuvers in the Indian Ocean this year.
Although both Russia and China have armies that are considerably larger in size and capability, the alliances of the United States and other powers together represent a superior power that also has much better-trained armies and extensive experience in actual combat that, for example, the Chinese army does not have.
Expert analysis assures that the only reason Beijing does not invade Taiwan is for fear of failure in the possible scenario of U.S. intervention, in addition to which Japan and Australia assure that Taiwan’s fate is directly related to that of their countries because whatever happens to Taiwan, could happen to them as well.