China doesn’t need to build bases in the South Pacific and risk militarily provoking the US and Australia when it can just continue employing economic and financial means to expand its regional influence. This approach might yield the short-term results that Australia and its allies are looking for.
Although the US maritime presence is global, and every country in the world, in one way or another, falls under the responsibility of the various Pentagon commands, the official line justifying the US presence from the Horn of Africa to the Strait of Malacca will now be more assertive and direct.
Suspending the provocative and costly war games with South Korea – per the joint Russian-Chinese proposal of a “double freeze”, even if it’s never openly admitted to – was a mature move by Trump that shows his sincerity in making progress with Chairman Kim, thereby stabilizing the Korean Peninsula in the process.
India’s plans for becoming a world power are unsustainable without the strong growth that would be afforded by a 1990s China-like economic partnership with the US, and its decision makers are now beginning to fear the consequences of indefinitely remaining the US’ “junior partner” for the rest of the century.
Regardless of the current protest movement’s staying power – which isn’t expected to be much – the latest outbreak of demonstrations makes it all the more difficult for Vietnam to reach any pragmatic deal with China in the future no matter what the terms might be now that Hanoi sees just how controversial any agreement – whether real or imagined – with Beijing is to its citizens.
The speech by Modi in the Shangri-La dialogue restated India’s desirable role as the spearhead of liberal international order. The speech moreover emphasized on the importance of peace, security, and cooperation through a rule-based order in the Indian Ocean.
A new American-encouraged Great Power constellation is therefore in the process of forming all across the Indo-Pacific Rimland in seeing India, Indonesia, and Japan deepening their multilateral strategic integration with one another, with Washington desiring for New Delhi to play the role of regional hegemon in the Indian Ocean.
Russian Railways has been working very hard to establish itself as a global player and the Trans-Arabian Railway project provides the perfect opportunity for showcasing its services. Not only that, but it’s a quid pro quo for Saudi investment in the Russian economy over the past couple of years, and it will help to accelerate the Russian-Saudi rapprochement, too.
Assessing the grand strategic implications if a US base in Poland leads to Washington accepting the Chinese-built Balkan Silk Road’s possible expansion to Warsaw one day, this would clearly result in serious long-term losses for Germany and Russia while being a major victory for the US and China.
By denying Daesh’s growing presence in Central Asia, the US inadvertently strengthened the Golden Ring that it originally wanted the terrorists to disrupt, with the consequences of this blowback being worse than even the late Brzezinski could have expected.
Rosneft’s controversial move indirectly introduced Russia to the simmering South China Sea dispute, but this might be a good thing because Moscow is known to favor international law and negotiations to any dispute instead of push its partners towards waging war in order to settle problems like the US-led Quad is prone to do.
The full potential of the Chinese-Iranian rail route isn’t being exploited because it depends on older infrastructure that avoids some of Central Asia’s most populous and economically productive cities by hugging the peripheral borders of its Kazkh and Turkmen transit states.