China-Russia military

Russian President Vladimir Putin takes part in a video conference call with Chinese President Xi Jinping at the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, 28 June 2021. (Alexei Nikolsky/Kremlin via Reuters)

Russia and China in Southeast Asia: Pragmatic cooperation against US primacy

Russia-China relations are at a historic high due to mutual concerns over US primacy, economic synergies and strong interpersonal ties between their national leaders. However, despite deepening military cooperation and closer diplomatic coordination, a formal alliance between Russia and China is not likely as this would constrain their strategic autonomy and undercut key foreign policy narratives. The South China Sea dispute is the most complex issue and a potential fault line in Russia-China relations in Southeast Asia. While Moscow has been broadly supportive of China’s position, Beijing’s jurisdictional claims threaten Russia’s lucrative energy interests in Southeast Asia.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (second from right) and national security adviser Jake Sullivan (right) speak with Politburo member and director of the Office of the Central Commission for Foreign Affairs Yang Jiechi (second from left) and State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi (left) at the opening session of US-China talks at the Captain Cook Hotel in Anchorage, Alaska, US, 18 March 2021. (Frederic J. Brown/Pool via Reuters)

Are two camps forming around China and the US?

As China-US competition continues, economics professor Zhu Ying observes that two camps seem to be emerging. But it is not so straightforward as one camp being pro-US and another pro-China. The trilateral relationships of the US-EU-China and China-US-Russia will create pendulum swings.
The cheers from the civilian Russians show that to Russia, there was no doubt of victory in the war. They called the Japanese “yellow monkeys”, and believed that Japan was too weak to dare to attack. They thought the Russian army had the absolute advantage and winning was just a matter of time.

[Photo story] Russo-Japanese War: A war fought on Chinese soil and its hard lessons

The Russo-Japanese War was in fact not fought in either Russia or Japan, but in China. It was the culmination of a fierce rivalry between a Eurasian power and an Asian country that showed it could hold its own against a much bigger opponent. Historical photo collector Hsu Chung-mao takes us through a painful period in history that saw many Chinese lives taken.
In 1951, the volunteer army surrounded and attacked the US army's 1st and 7th infantry divisions. As it was barely one year since the CCP established the PRC, it did not yet have its own defence weapons industry. The troops were using mainly Soviet-made weapons, arms left behind by the Japanese, and US weapons seized from the KMT army. The volunteers in the photo are using Czech-made ZB-26 light machine guns, which were relatively rare among the volunteers due to the lack of matching bullets.

[Photo story] The Korean War: The first large-scale war between China and the US

China and the US fought their first major war against each other during the Korean War. China's ill-equipped volunteer troops suffered huge losses, sacrificing eight lives for every one lost on the US side. Nonetheless, China showed great determination and resilience during the war. Historical photo collector Hsu Chung-mao delves deep into the images and facts of the Korean War, and reflects on how it has shaped modern international geopolitics.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping toast during a visit to the Far East Street exhibition on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok, Russia, 11 September 2018. (Sergei Bobylev/TASS Host Photo Agency via REUTERS)

Why China and Russia should join forces now

Hong Kong-based commentator Zheng Hao notes the growing pressure of possible war exerted by the US on China, and suggests that Article 9 of the 2001 Sino-Russian Treaty of Friendship urging “contacts and consultations” might be a useful way to prevent war.
This file photo taken on 1 October 2019 shows military vehicles carrying HHQ-9B surface-to-air missiles participating in a military parade at Tiananmen Square in Beijing to mark the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China. (Greg Baker/AFP)

Revival of nuclear competition: How should China respond?

As the US and Russia take a more hawkish stance in developing their nuclear capabilities, China may get caught in the fray in this dangerous arena of nuclear power one-upmanship, says Chinese military affairs commentator Song Zhongping. He fears that the US will break its own rules by carrying out traditional nuclear weapon testing, thereby spurring a domino effect.
This file photo taken on May 9, 2014 shows Philippine and US Marines taking positions during a beach assault exercise facing the South China Sea in San Antonio, Zambales province. The Philippines told the US on February 11, 2020 it was quitting a pact key to their historical military alliance, which triggers a six-month countdown to the deal's termination, Manila said. (Ted Aljibe/AFP)

The Philippines' termination of the Visiting Forces Agreement: A win for China and Russia

Manila’s decision to withdraw from the 1998 Visiting Forces Agreement with the US will benefit China and Russia. Russia’s attempt to cozy up to the Philippines, however, might not be wholly welcomed by Beijing. ISEAS academic Ian Storey sets out the impact of the decision.
Russia and China are getting closer in terms of military ties. (Reuters)

Closer military ties in China-Russia power play

Project Assistant Professor Yu Koizumi of The University of Tokyo observes that as long as their respective relations with the US remain at an impasse, China and Russia’s growing military ties portend greater collaboration between the two powers in the Eurasia great game.