03.05.2024 Author: Aleena Im

Deepening Russia-China ties exposes US Hypocrisy

Deepening Russia-China ties exposes US Hypocrisy

The US has always kept a close eye on China & Russia, since both countries always been proverbial thorns in the US’s side. However, the problem is the hypocrisy that the US displays in every move it makes. Throughout history, infiltrating (directly or indirectly) in the Philippines, Cuba, Nicaragua, Vietnam, Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Pakistan, and Libya, US intervention has always been about preserving its own interests in the name of ‘restoring democracy’.

From after the second World War, till 2001, the US was behind 201 armed conflicts in 153 locations, which meant that the US was behind 80% of the total wars across the globe at the time. The US continually interferes in the affairs of whichever country it pleases, but as soon as a non-US alliance starts getting stronger, the US finds one excuse or another to start ostracizing it.

Consider the example of the current crisis in the South China Sea. The US has no business interfering in the region, which is already marred with complications. However, the US announced a short while ago that it will partake with expensive military drills in the region in collaboration with the Philippines. These Balikatan or “shoulder-to-shoulder” drills, which are ongoing till the 10th of May, will involve 16,700 soldiers participating in war-like simulations in areas facing Taiwan and the South China Sea.

When it comes to Taiwan, China maintains that Taiwan is a part of Chinese territory, and that any matter relating to Taiwan is Beijing’s internal matter. However, the Taiwan Relations Act, an act by the US congress, ensures that the US will provide weapons for Taiwan’s defence. Biden has spoken about standing behind Taiwan many times, and has said that in the case of a Chinese military operation on the island, the US military will be deployed to defend the island. To ensure their constant presence in the region, and counter China’s movements w.r.t Taiwan, the US military retains permanent bases in Japan and has base rights in the Philippines.

However, at the same time, the US is warning China against simply trading with Russia. Vedant Patel, the principal deputy spokesperson for the US state department stated that the “PRC is supporting Russia’s war effort, and is doing so by helping ramp up its defence production … the PRC is providing Russia with significant quantities of machine tools, microelectronics, optics, UAVs [unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones] and cruise missile technology, and nitrocellulose, which Russia uses to make propellants for weapons”.

He went on to say that China is filling “critical gaps in Russia’s defence production cycle”, and that “China’s support is actively enabling Russia’s war in Ukraine, and it poses a significant threat to European security … We’ve sanctioned relevant firms in the PRC and are prepared to take further steps as necessary”. The US has even directly threatened China by saying that it is “prepared to take further steps as necessary”.

The fact of the matter is that the US is currently the bully on the block, and it does not want anyone to challenge its so-called authority. Moreover, it also presses its allies to take the same stance. The US has been urging Europe to step up diplomatic and economic pressure on Beijing to stop sales to Russia. During the latest meeting of the G7 countries, China’s support for Russia was condemned by all the participants, and more potential sanctions for the PRC were discussed. In the same meeting, even the German Foreign Minister stated that her country could not accept China pursuing closer relations with Russia.

According to Ian Bremmer, a political risk analyst, the US and its allies are trying to make Ukraine stronger even if it means escalating the war over time. This is to ensure that they can eventually negotiate with Russia to settle on their own terms.

In response to these allegations, Liu Pengyu, the spokesperson for the Chinese embassy in the US, said that China had not provided weaponry to any party in the Russia-Ukraine conflict. He also said that “the normal trade between China and Russia should not be interfered or restricted. We urge the US side to refrain from disparaging and scapegoating the normal relationship between China and Russia”.

The hypocrisy of the US when it comes to human rights and ‘democracy’ is also increasingly becoming more and more evident – especially after the ongoing genocide in Palestine. Just this week, the US Senate voted in favour of giving a massive $95.3 billion in aid for Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan. As for President Biden’s comments on the approval, he reiterated that the US “stands resolutely for democracy and freedom, and against tyranny and oppression”.

The breakdown of the aid package is similar to the one in the bill was passed in February. This one includes $60.8 billion for Ukraine, $26.4 billion for Israel (and humanitarian aid for civilians in conflict zones including Gaza), and $8.1 billion for the Indo-Pacific region. Since the US has played a huge supporting role in the Palestinian genocide, we can safely assume that the $26.4 billion for Israel will be spent mostly on the continuation of the destruction. Moreover, the money for the Indo-Pacific will most likely go into strengthening US interests against China.

Coming back to the natural Russia-China relationship, both China’s Xi Jinping and Russia’s Vladimir Putin have decided to strengthen all types of ties between the two countries, and stand up against US hegemony. According to Al Jazeera journalist Katrina Yu, “The US calls China its biggest rival and Russia its biggest threat … These two countries oppose increasing US influence over Europe and the growing power of NATO, as well as what they have referred to as unilateral sanctions against both sides. So really, Russia and China here are natural partners”.

Just last year, both leaders announced a “no limits partnership” and a “new era of cooperation”. Trade between the two countries reached $190 billion in 2022, and a whopping $240 billion in 2023. China was also Russia’s top energy consumer in 2022. Earlier this month, both countries confirmed their commitment to deepening the trade and economic relationship.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi recently discussed the strategic cooperation between the two. They shared that even though NATO and OSCE (Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe) were present to ensure Euro-Atlantic security and stability, it did not seem feasible now to conduct meaningful negotiations and agree on things which would balance the interests of all the countries and entities involved.

Without mentioning the US directly, Wang Yi went so far as to say that Russia and China must “oppose hegemonism and power politics, oppose the monopoly of international affairs by a few countries”. In the face of isolation by the West, Russia and China are now focused on finding like-minded partners to ensure that the US can not continue monopolizing the global arena.

The irony is that the US is internally divided on Russia, and the US’s Western allies are internally divided on China. Trump has been vocal about ending US involvement in Russia and has repeatedly suggested pulling out of NATO, while Europe has been unable to take a firm stance against China due to its economic might.

Through sanctions, blocs, defence, and international pressure, the US and its allies have long been pushing a Russia-China alliance inadvertently. Now that the relationship between the two is thickening, US selfishness when it comes to global politics is now becoming crystal clear to the onlookers. When the US ‘defended its sovereignty’, it openly declared a ‘war on terror’ for which it spent $8 trillion, caused around 940,000 direct deaths and 4.7 million indirect deaths, and displaced around 38 million people. However, despite countless warnings to the US with respect to NATO expansion, when Russia finally started defending its own sovereignty, the US cried ‘democracy’ and ‘Ukrainian sovereignty’ to facilitate a global movement against Russia. Since China is not directly involved in the war, the US is trying to convince the world to start sanctioning it, to try and reduce China’s economic strength.

It is clear that throughout history, the US has only been working to eliminate any threats to its own hegemony, and the current situation with Russia and China is no different.


Aleena Im – is an independent researcher and writer and is interested in international relations, current affairs, especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.

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