The COVID-19 pandemic and its aftermath are bound to change the geopolitical equations around the world, even as nations all around get increasingly wary of associating themselves or growing friendly with an expansionist China, which by all estimates, is the real culprit of the prevailing pandemic, and who, in the words of United States’ UN ambassador, Kelly Craft, allowed a local epidemic to transform into a global pandemic. The remarks by the US ambassador came as part of sharp exchanges between US, China and Russia at the UNGA’s 75th General Debate session on Thursday.
The UNGA debate got heated up as the three veto-powered members of the Council took to pinning the blame on one another regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and their handling of the same. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi trained guns upon the US and said that the pandemic required countries to discard “cold war mentality and ideological bias”. The US Ambassador lashed out at both China and Russia with a sharp “Shame on you!” remark, while also retorting the CCP in a similar line as that of President Donald Trump.
The most important statement, however, came from Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who said, “We see attempts on the part of individual countries to use the current situation in order to move forward their narrow interests of the moment in order to settle the score with the undesirable governments or geopolitical competitors.” What is hilarious, however, is the fact that the geopolitical and strategic myopia of global liberal media has made them believe that the said statement is a jibe by Moscow against the US, and that the Putin administration has outrightly referred to the Trump-led US government as ‘undesirable’. This is a grand lie.
In fact, the comment is aimed at China, with whom, the relations of Moscow have soured in the recent past, especially in a COVID-engulfed world. It is no secret that a Trump-led United States has proven to be advantageous for Russia, as the United States’ President locks horns with its biggest rival – China and its ruling CCP. With the US gaining a tremendous enemy in the form of China, the US’ Russian complex has been subdued, and Washington no longer considers Moscow a major threat. Why would Vladimir Putin and his establishment then target the US at the UNGA?
As a matter of fact, Russia has not, and the whole ‘unfavourable government’ remark being a dig at the Trump administration is nothing but a figment of global media’s imagination. The remark by Russia is aimed squarely at China and its ruling CCP-regime, which has unleashed a pandemic on the world, and who, in such testing times, is also flexing its muscles around all its border, including with Russia and its friend – India.
China has staked claim on the Russian far east city of Vladivostok, citing historical ‘facts’, in behaviour which bears striking resemblance to their assertions in the South China Sea, 90 percent of whose waters are claimed by China under the imaginative nine-dash line of its own invention. By claiming Vladivostok, China has shown that its expansionist appetite knows no bounds, and such a misadventure by Beijing has not been ignored by Moscow.
Russia has increased its troop deployment in the Russian far east, in a signal to China that its verbal claims over Russian land will be met with military responses if required. The troop deployment also goes on to show how Russia does not trust China, especially after incidents which unfolded in Eastern Ladakh between India and China caught the eye of the global community. There is a simmering distrust between Moscow and Beijing, and Putin, in order to take no chances, has heightened the security around Russia’s far east.
China has also been aiming to eat into Russia’s exclusive sphere of influence in the region which previously comprised of the erstwhile Soviet Union. This, added with the fact that China has also been eyeing the Arctic region, has forced Moscow to turn its eyes toward the Indo-Pacific, which in any case is a touchy subject for China.
Russia had also suspended indefinitely the delivery of the sophisticated S-400 missile systems to China amidst heightened differences popping up between the two countries. Point being, Russia and China’s relations aren’t as rosy as global media would like people around the world to believe. In fact, Russia is supportive of the Trump administration increasingly targeting China, as that takes the spotlight away from Moscow and helps it mend ties with the US.
To stamp authority over such propositions, in what comes as major news, Russian President Vladimir Putin has proposed a non-interference pact with the United States to avoid interfering in each other’s elections and other domestic affairs. As such, it would not be an overstatement to suggest that contrary to popular narrative, the US and Russia might even team up against China if the need arises.