Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov reaffirmed his country’s support of Beijing’s sovereignty over Taiwan last week. According to the Eurasian Great Power’s top diplomat:
“Just like the overwhelming majority of other countries, Russia views Taiwan as part of the People’s Republic of China. This is the premise we proceed from and will continue to proceed from in our policy.”
This prompted Newsweek to headline a piece titled “Russia Says Taiwan is Part of China as Two Powers Further Align Against U.S.”, which presented this policy declaration as some kind of anti-American move.
It’s nothing of the sort though, and Moscow’s motivations deserve to be elaborated upon to clarify matters. Russia is firmly in support of the UN-centric world order, not the US’ subjectively defined so-called “rules-based order” which selectively imposes double standards in a desperate attempt to indefinitely stave off its fading unipolar hegemony. According to international law, Taiwan is a rogue province of the People’s Republic of China over which Beijing has formal sovereignty. Reaffirming this reality isn’t a sign that Russia is “aligning” with China “against” the US, but is simply a statement of legal fact.
Making a bigger deal out of this than it is implies ulterior perception management motives. To explain, those that are hostile to both multipolar Great Powers hope to promote the false impression that they’re “allies”, which is misleading. While they closely cooperate with one another and are indeed strategic partners, neither will go to war in support of the either, not over Taiwan or Crimea, among other potential flashpoints. Nevertheless, implying that this scenario is possible is meant to justify the US-led West’s escalations against them on the manipulated pretext that such aggressive moves are supposedly “defensive” in nature.
Some in the Alt-Media Community (AMC) push this warped perception of reality for ideological reasons since they wishfully believe that such a false interpretation of their partnership is true. It seemingly serves the purpose of rallying their supporters, though it carries with it the immense risk of backfiring once reality sets in and these same supporters might become disappointed to the point where their emotional reactions are exploited to make them susceptible to hostile narratives such as claiming that one of them sold the other out. After all, Russia is actively “balancing” China, though in a “friendly/gentle” manner that few dare to talk about.
I explained this in three prior pieces titled “Why Structural Realists Are Wrong To Predict That Russia Will Help The US Contain China”, “Russian Scholar Karaganov Articulated Russia’s Balancing Act With China”, and “Towards Bi-Multipolarity”. They’re of varying lengths and detail but should at the very least be skimmed by those who are interested in this topic. The purpose in referencing them is to show that exaggerated claims of their strategic partnership don’t reflect the reality of their relations. President Putin even declined to support China’s claims in the South China Sea just last week, which speaks to his country’s balanced position.
It’s crucial to clarify all of this in order to simultaneously discredit the manipulation of these false perceptions to put more pressure on both of them as well as preemptively avert the exploitation of well-intended but naive individuals’ disappointment with the facts once they inevitably become more self-evident due to these strategic dynamics. Both the Mainstream Media and AMC may find it “politically inconvenient” for their own reasons to accept the strategic insight that was shared in this analysis, but honest observers should appreciate this since it’s intended to make it much less likely that they’ll be misled by either of those two in the future.
By Andrew Korybko Via http://oneworld.press/?module=articles&action=view&id=2270