25 December 2023
Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin’s pursuit of a military partnership poses the biggest challenge to the US in decades.
For years, the United States enjoyed unrivaled military supremacy, standing as the world’s sole superpower following the collapse of the Soviet Union. However, as 2023 draws to a close, conflicts are erupting worldwide, with China and Russia displaying increasing aggression in their shared ambition to surpass the US as the dominant global power. Analysts warn that the authoritarian leaders, Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin, are exploiting global instability to undermine the US and its allies, inching closer to forming a military alliance that poses the most significant threat the US has faced in decades.
Xi and Putin Draw Closer to Formidable Military Alliance:
The rivalry between the US and the Russia-China partnership is manifesting in conflicts across the globe. China has provided crucial economic and diplomatic support to Russia in its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, while the US has extended billions in aid to Kyiv. In the Middle East, Russia and China have aligned themselves with Iran and criticized Israel’s actions against Hamas, a Tehran-backed terror group. In contrast, the US has offered military aid and diplomatic backing to Israel. Experts suggest that China is closely observing the outcome of the Ukraine war, gauging global reactions as it contemplates seizing control of Taiwan. As China and Russia draw closer, they are increasingly coordinating their military resources, conducting joint naval exercises, sharing submarine technology, and pledging to collaborate on high-tech weapons development.
The US Military Urged to Address the New Threat:
During the Cold War, the Pentagon’s strategy involved the capacity to fight one major war and deter other attacks. However, the rise of China and Russia has brought forth threats “fundamentally different [to] anything experienced in the past, even in the darkest days of the Cold War,” as stated by the Congressional Commission on the Strategic Posture of the United States. The Commission called on the Pentagon to revise its plans to be prepared for the possibility of simultaneous conflict with China and Russia. The Russia-China alliance presents a significant challenge for the US, as it will have to manage security concerns in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East while potentially being stretched thin. While some experts remain skeptical about the stability of a Russian-Chinese alliance due to long-standing tensions and China’s reliance on Western markets, the US must ready itself for the possibility of a military pact between these authoritarian leaders.
China and Russia’s growing military partnership poses a formidable challenge to the United States. As conflicts escalate worldwide, the US must reassess its military strategies and alliances to effectively counter this threat. The US’ global alliances, particularly in Europe, must urgently bolster their military capabilities to offset the power wielded by these rival superpowers. The road ahead demands substantial burden-sharing among allies and a united front against the coordinated geopolitical ambitions of Russia and China. The US can still navigate these challenges, but it will require a concerted effort and strategic planning to maintain its position as the preeminent global power.