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Spengler

The New Sino-Russian Alliance

May 21st, 2014 - 6:39 am

China and Russia evidently have concluded a 30-year gas deal which shifts the balance of Russian hydrocarbon exports eastwards, but that’s not the thing to focus on. Pravda reports:

The central themes of the talks between the two leaders will be two projects in the field of aviation – the creation of a joint wide-body long-haul aircraft and the production of Mi-26 heavy helicopter in China, the Kommersant reports.

Russia, entering into such cooperation with China, indicates that it is ready to open access to Russian aircraft technologies, despite the fact that China previously resorted to building unlicensed copies of well-known Russian aircraft.

Energy is important, but military and aerospace technology may be even more important. As the Russian newspaper observes, Russia had restricted exports of its best equipment to China because of intellectual property violations. Two weeks ago Putin approved sale of Russia’s new S400 air defense system to China; this reportedly will give China air cover over the whole of Taiwan, among other things.

Russia always has had first-rate designers, but its production capacities never matched the ideas. Merge Russian designs with Chinese engineering, and the likelihood that the Sino-Russian combination might challenge US technological superiority is high. It’s not surprising that Russia responded to US sanctions by cutting off exports of the rocket engines on which the US depends to launch spy satellites. Bloomberg reports that it will take the US six years to build replacement capacity.

Meanwhile, reports the South China Morning Post,

China and Russia started a week-long naval exercise in the politically sensitive East China Sea yesterday.

Chinese and Russian units taking part in the Joint Sea-2014 drill will be combined rather than operating separately during the exercise, the first time the Chinese navy has worked so closely with a foreign maritime force, according to Beijing-based naval expert Li Jie. “The mixed confrontation and drill means the exercises will operate more like a real battle,” said Li. “It shows the two countries’ strategic partnership has entered a high level of cooperation and coordination, even though both Beijing and Moscow insist they are not military allies.”

I may have lost most of my remaining Republican friends for ridiculing the sanctions and saber-rattling at Russia over Ukraine. We spoke loudly and carried a small stick. What do you propose to do now, big talkers?

We have much, much bigger problems than Ukraine. Here’s what I think we should do after we finish wiping the egg off our face.

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Top Rated Comments   
China is also getting the latest, most cutting edge American technology. Every one of our engineering and natural science graduate programs is loaded with Chinese PhD candidates, even our most elite schools like MIT and Cal Tech. And in many departments they are an absolute majority of the graduate students.

Some of these students want to stay in the US, and some do. But most go home and take their skills with them. And even some who stay often go home. E.g., a major researcher in the Mars Rover program just mysteriously resigned his faculty post for no apparent reason and went back to China. The FBI has been all over his offices and labs and home. No reason given.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
They say the meek shall inherit the Earth. The truth is the meek shall inherit the West. With no political correctness to stay their hand, Russia and China will deal ruthlessly with failure, internal or external.

Due to those meek in the West, say good-bye to the Pax Americana. In reality China and Russia are standing tall in the future, not the West, which is immigrating itself into bankruptcy and distraction.

The third player to stand tall may be any empire-builder in Africa that can coalesce there and take over. But they'll have no external force for decades.

Russia and China can act to mutually support the exploitation of resources in their spheres of interest - by force if necessary.

In my opinion, China will eventually innovate a new form of imperialism: they'll swoop into the Philippines or Indonesia, militarize a specific tiny zones for resources, kick everyone out, and take those resources out. Conquest is messy and expensive and vulnerable to rebellion and terrorism.

The only solid game plan within the American zeitgeist which is working overtime is to immigrate our success out of existence. Our daffy political correctness still allows us to pick the best men for sports teams, but not for national interests, because racially, we have decided we don't like where success emanates from. Russia and China have no such goofy delusions that they need messiahs to diversify them due to historic guilt, and therefore into cultural suicide.

Even the PC will tell you they'll take the American know-how of our military to protect them over Brazil's, and then turn around and import the entire thing one person at a time.
27 weeks ago
27 weeks ago Link To Comment
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All Comments   (58)
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Its the Hitler-Stalin non-aggression pact all over again. I wonder when they will divide up Central Asia.

http://alfinnextlevel.wordpress.com/2014/05/22/china-russia-recapitulating-the-hitler-stalin-pact/

I'm also wondering if there is any connection between David Goldman in and the "Al Fin" blogger I have linked to in here. They both espouse a "get your act together" Heinleinien conservatism (which is the only kind of conservatism I can relate to).
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
I'm a little bit skeptical that Russia and China will actually be able to cooperate on military hardware. Russia may have good designers, but are they going to send their best designs to the Chinese? Chinese engineering is still debatable, though of course I am not counting them out entirely.

Also note reports of Chinese nat gas accessible by fracking, making Russia a stop-gap solution.

And really, why would China put their neck out their for Russia?

"What do you propose to do now, big talkers?"

Their policy will be the same as it has been: criticize Obama for having the same policy as them but a month behind the schedule they would have preferred.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
We should license the production of the A-10 by Brazil to all of our NATO allies and our SEATO allies. Russians rely to heavily on armor. This would be a huge deterrent to Russian expansionism at minimal cost to NATO and SEATO as well as a big profit generator and bridge-builder with the Brazilians.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Neither of the above. Scare them both by throwing massive national resources into cutting-edge defense technology. That's why China pivoted to the US against Russia. And that's why Russia effectively surrendered in 1989: they knew they couldn't fight a war against American tech superiority. Well, our edge is eroding. We still have time to reverse this--barely.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
I'm a big believer in the A10, but it is extremely vulnerable to Russian and Chinese air defense systems. It's a forty-year-old technology. We need to play leapfrog, not catchup.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
you're missing "Farewell", without it the US still ignored the spying nets of the Soviets over the US

http://spectator.org/articles/37185/extraordinary-case-farewell

from then 'star wars' was scenarised

26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Cooperation between Russia and China is always worth a prolonged look. But the level of concern expressed over their latest intent to cooperate in a non-energy area assumes the Chicoms will not do as they have done over and over to other countries and companies. The Russians know they’re not to be trusted and, then, who in their right mind would trust the Russians? The threat to cooperate in other areas is Putin’s way of getting back at the West over its condemnations of his moves against Ukraine. I wouldn’t worry about them producing a wide body aircraft together. The last I heard the Chicoms were trying to get into a certain commercial aircraft niche. But even if it gets an FAA certification most western carriers would never buy this aircraft and they won't be buying a wide-body they produce between them.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Force China to choose:
Either alliance with Russia against America, or access to American markets, universities, etc.
One or the other. Period.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
"China and Russia evidently have concluded a 30-year gas deal which shifts the balance of Russian hydrocarbon exports eastwards, but that’s not the thing to focus on."

Why is that?
Because it exposes the shallowness of your attempting to focus exclusively on the technology projects?
And does so even as the source you cite notes that China has been stealing from the Russians for decades?
And what exactly are the terms of that deal? Do they involve China not paying up front? Is the actual price tied to that of oil, meaning it will be worth far less as the whole world moves to natural gas?
And just where is this gas being shipped from? Sources that weren't shipping west to begin with?

So Russia has made a deal that:
1. Sells gas they had no other customer for
2. Sells it at a price that may collapse
3. Sells it without upfront payments
4. Requires a $55B investment to begin with
5. Gives up additional high end technology
6. Accepts previous theft of high end technology
7. Makes more noise about abandoning any hope of a compromise with the West

As I said the last time you "threatened" us with Russia making a deal with China this is not a deal between equals, but Russia agreeing to become China's client in hopes of surviving long enough to make a comeback.
And this in the face of a continuing demographic implosion, despite it having slowed from Instant DOOM! to mere Pending DOOM! Indeed, the whole gas deal is almost certain to require Russia importing even more Chinese laborers into their empty Far Eastern districts, making problems there even worse.

"I may have lost most of my remaining Republican friends for ridiculing the sanctions and saber-rattling at Russia over Ukraine. We spoke loudly and carried a small stick. What do you propose to do now, big talkers?"

Nice straw man there.
There are many people, like myself, who opposed both your proposed policy of appeasement of and alliance with Russia as well as the useless posturing of the current administration. (Though do tell, while we were appeasing and allying with Russia, how were we to keep them away from our technological developments for the resurgence against China?)
So the proposal remains as it was then - actually do something to show Russia, and China for that matter, that their territorial revanchism will not be tolerated.

"We have much, much bigger problems than Ukraine. Here’s what I think we should do after we finish wiping the egg off our face."

So now that most of the fallout I predicted would occur as a result of Russia seizing Crimea has happened even after you boldly declared there would be no strategic consequences whatsoever, you are proposing that we . . . increase spending, just focus it on R&D. Which is nice and all, but that is a domestic policy, not a diplomatic policy.
Since you are challenging people over the failed policy of others you should actually propose a functional diplomatic policy of your own.
Or will you keep the egg on your face and stand pat on the failed predictions and recommendation that we try to appease the Russians more than the Russians are trying to appease the Chinese?
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Russia will provide gas to China at a level much cheaper than to Europe. That's why Chinese urea stocks are rallying (eg HK 3983). Russia had held out for higher prices for a decade, and finally conceded.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
But the zeropeans will be ready to pay far higher prices so that the gas still run through their pipe lines

Note that as a French, I don't care, our nuclear energy suffices, just that we ought to make it like Russia, cut the electricity nets to the zeropeans that they use at our expenses

Algeria is becoming a reliable allie to France

http://www.lemonde.fr/afrique/article/2014/05/22/paris-et-alger-engagent-un-partenariat-militaire_4423516_3212.html

I have always thought that the Algerian minset was much more proxy to the French mindset, than the german minset will ever be, now that the FLN and Pied-noirs generations is disappearing, a new regard on our brothers quarrels will prevail
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
You (BronxZionist) said, "Why is that? Because it exposes the shallowness of your attempting to focus exclusively on the technology projects?"

Technology, as it turns out, is a primary driver of many incredibly important developments in history. Because we all take technology and its continual advancement for granted this can be hard to see. Allow me to give an example:

The laundry machine single-handedly gave women the vote, and propelled them into becoming a huge cultural and intellectual partner to men in Western society. Prior to the laundry machine, most women spent, not just a little, but a very large amount of time cleaning. After the laundry machine, women had for the first time in history, *free time* -- time where they were not toiling like a slave every minute of the day leading them to exhaustion.

This time allowed them to read and learn. That led to the rest.

So that's 50% of the population which "mere technology" freed, enabling a incalculable addition to society. (in fact one could argue that this alone is the predominant defect which holds most Muslim countries back).

Everything from the communications revolution beginning with the telegraph, to the materials revolution (plastics, petroleum-derived products) has worked together to allow the United States to leverage an unbelievable per-capita income. The amount of "value" we create is astounding. It allows us to live in a world more luxurious than anyone's wildest dreams 100 years ago.

According to someone who read Alan Greenspan's book a while back, during the Reagan / Cold-War years, the US *change* in GDP (the delta, the increase alone) was roughly equivalent to (or on the order of) the GDP of the entire Soviet Union(!!) Armed with this knowledge, one can see why Reagan thought it wise to nudge both sides into spending their money at an equal rate -- there was just no way that the US would not outlast the USSR in such a situation. (If I am wrong about this, I'm happy to be corrected).

So Goldman's "focus" on technology is both adroit and prescient. Your reaction however, is neither.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Except of course this isn't a program to make a laundry machine.
Or a telegraph.
Or plastics.

It is a program to upgrade a helicopter that can lift 20 tons into one that can lift 80 tons along with a program to build a super jetliner.
This program is between Russia, which does indeed build rather good fighters and bombers - along with its fair share of rather lousy fighters and bombers - but has less than a stellar reputation in designing and building large transport aircraft that are generally stolen from Western designs in the first place, and China, which pretty exclusively turns Russian designs into third rate knockoffs.

Gee that's . . . impressive.
No wait, that's Russia working in its weakest area with China working in an area it has no ability at all, on support vehicles intended to break into an already crowded market, which is distinctly unimpressive.

Now if it meant Russia and China had agreed to cooperate on what they were both stealing from American corporations to produce this new super transport chopper and super jetliner I might be impressed and even a bit worried.
It isn't.

Not all technology is equal.
Invoking "technology" as some transcendent and discussion ending trump is neither adroit nor prescient but lazy and myopic.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Spengler's assertion that there is nothing the United States can do to stop Putin's conquest of Ukraine is simply untrue. We are not carrying a "small stick." The United States has several very big sticks at its disposal, that are more than adequate to beat the beast back into its cage. The problem is that our current government is unwilling to use any of them.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Technically, I don't know who would win a full-dress military confrontation on the Russian-Ukrainian border. I don't want to find out how good the S400 ("Growler") is or whether F-22's are vulnerable. I'm skeptical about our big sticks, but I claim no special expertise.
My point is that the strategic importance of Ukraine is trivial next to the collapse of a pillar of Cold War policy since 1971, namely keeping China and Russia at odds. We should have proposed a referendum in Ukraine on federalism before Russia did: if Crimea voted for secession, who cares?
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Why the constant Russia-hatred from this guy, bordering on racism? The US government spends 5 billion dollars overthrowing the democratically elected government of Ukraine, and has spent more than 10 years invading countries and overthrowing governments around the world, but Russia is the "beast" that needs to be beat back into its cage? What kind of Orwellian world of propaganda does this guy live in?

Fortunately, I've noticed that Americans of all political persuasions aren't buying this neocon rhetoric so much these days, though that doesn't seem to stop them from beating the drums of war. The reality is that right-wingers are more concerned about an out-of-control, radical government and a hostile leftist elite here at home than what Putin is up to in faraway lands, and left-leaning people instinctively oppose an aggressive US foreign polilcy, so I'm not sure who Mr. Zubrin thinks is his constituency for this new Cold War. It's really another manufactured war, by many of the same people who brought us the Iraq debacle. Except this time the "enemy" is a nuclear-armed military power, not a punching bag. So again I say to Zubrin: tone down the war-mongering propaganda, and get a grip on reality!
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Readers should observe the previous comments of the person who calls himself "Doctor Nope."
I quote:
"As far as I'm concerned, it can't come soon enough. Soon, I expect right-wingers to join Muslims in chanting "death to Amerika!" as I've been doing for some time now."
He also strongly endorses the views of anti American fascist ideologues Julius Evola and Aleksandr Dugin.
Enough said.
Note to David Goldman - Please read through the prior comments of this man. If people of this sort are endorsing your articles, you clearly need to take stock and reexamine your positions.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xpq4tx_comment-la-c-i-a-prepare-les-revolutions-colorees_news

Dugin ain't responsible for the colored revolutions designed by the CIA

and this had nothing to do with the Muslims chanting "death to America"
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Nobody likes (or should like) what I am writing: neither Russians, nor Chinese, nor Americans.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
You don't get it. The US is the aggressor, because it lent money to the Ukrainian government. Russian boots on the ground have nothing to do with it. Besides, the Slavic people need lebensraum. The same sort of arguments apply to any interference with the ongoing Ba'athist run genocide in Syria.

No point in discussing anything with this weasel. Left fascists are impervious to logic. I'd just ignore the petty little savage.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Russia can't live in peace with other nations.
It's that simple.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
The Chinese won't forget that there were plenty of Chinese, and Koreans, who got caught up in the Russian Gulags. And of course the Chinese won't forget the Americans passing the Chinese Exclusion Act in 1882. Who the heck knows what's going to happen
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
The Ruskies and Chinese historically hate and mistrust each other. Not to totally dismiss it, but it's not the end of the world. During the cold war Russian had a majority of it's troops on it's border with China, not Europe.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yanukovych was not overthrown by the US government, but by a popular revolution involving hundreds of thousands of people.

It is not the US government, but the Putin regime, which has in initiated warfare to try to stop the Ukrainian people from seeking freedom with the West.

Furthermore, it is transparently the case that the reason why Putin is so determined to crush the Ukrainians is because he is afraid that if they are successful, the Russian people will follow their example and overthrow his own fascist regime.

Putin is a traitor who has committed acts of terrorism against Russia, including the 1999 bombings of apartment buildings in Moscow, in order to seize power for himself and destroy Russia's hopes for liberty.

I am not anti Russian. It is the Putin lovers who are anti Russian. Putin is the beast who has put Russia in a cage. Putin needs to be contained so that Russia can be set free.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
And Putin's popularity rating is at all all-time high. You know better than the Russians, I see. If I were Russian I would vote for Gary Kasporov, not Putin: I'm an American and I think freedom comes first. There isn't a speck of evidence that the Russian majority sees things my way, or will any time soon. What makes you think people want freedom? That's a rare occurrence in world history.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yes, just as Hitler's popularity reached ever greater all-time highs after the West gave him easy triumphs in the Rhineland, Austria, and Czechoslavakia. Thus every capitulation undermined internal opposition and every act of appeasement encouraged further aggression.
Now, here's a question for you Dave: Were the 1938 Germans so deliriously for Hitler because Germans are intrinsically Nazis, or because Hitler had a controlled press, employed state power and thugs to suppress opponents, and was able to wrap himself in the aura of easy victories? And if the latter, rather than the former, is the case, what does that say about the validity of your assertion that today's Russians are intrinsic tyranny-lovers who have no interest in freedom?
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Well said. I've lived in Russia, and it isn't exactly a prison. In some ways, it's a lot freer than the modern West. But the idea that Russians, and every other society on the planet, wants to be "free" of their own traditions, identity and culture so they can be just like Americans is a very arrogant and ridiculous idea. Freedom is a cultural construct for the most part, not some universal ideal. America would be a lot better off if we grasped this, and stopped trying to "liberate" every society that doesn't want to be just like us.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yeah, and besides, freedom is never a good thing anyways, even speaking as an American. You know what liberty, freedom resulted in? Totalitarianism, anarchy, destruction. I know because the cause of liberty and freedom resulted in the French Revolution, and the carnage that ensued under Robespierre. Heck, Thomas Paine basically advocated that America try to become like the French in that regard, including the destruction of Christianity. Not to mention the Communists of all stripes (yes, including Socialists) have used liberty to justify their barbaric actions (why do you THINK many of the Communist groups used the words "Liberation Front" in many countries?), not to mention several intellectuals such as Sartre, Foucault, Hellman, Stone, Hemmingway, and the like promoted actively the Communist cause and endorsed absolute individual freedom to such an extent that what they advocated for was absolute anarchy, even after Communism was exposed as evil, at least under Stalin.

What I believe is that the entire world be subject to God and Jesus's absolute rule, that we submit to them in absolute terror, be eternal slaves to him, just as we were long ago.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Well, it's not like the punch wasn't clearly telegraphed. We saw it coming, wondered when it would hit, debated its impact, but somehow did nothing to block it. I know what we need. A red line!

Yup, that should do it.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
China is also getting the latest, most cutting edge American technology. Every one of our engineering and natural science graduate programs is loaded with Chinese PhD candidates, even our most elite schools like MIT and Cal Tech. And in many departments they are an absolute majority of the graduate students.

Some of these students want to stay in the US, and some do. But most go home and take their skills with them. And even some who stay often go home. E.g., a major researcher in the Mars Rover program just mysteriously resigned his faculty post for no apparent reason and went back to China. The FBI has been all over his offices and labs and home. No reason given.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
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