US is calculating risks, begins to doubt “dual containment” of Russia, China — expert

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MOSCOW, June 8. /TASS/. The United States is calculating current risks and probing into whether it will be feasible to push ahead with the policy of ‘dual containment’ of Russia and China, the president of the Russian Institute of the World Economy and International Relations (IMEMO) under the Russian Academy of Sciences, Alexander Dynkin, told TASS in an interview.

“Washington is obviously trying to end the steep decline in Russian-US relations,” said Dynkin, a member of the Russian International Affairs Council’s Board of Trustees. “Firstly, the New START treaty was prolonged two days before its expiration date. Secondly, a Putin-Biden summit is being prepared for. Thirdly, intensive work is underway on resolving the controversy over the Iranian nuclear program. The US has eased its stance on the Nord Stream 2 issue. That gas carrier’s first pipeline has been finalized technologically. There were no signs of confrontation at the meetings of Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russia’s Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev and US presidential national security adviser Jake Sullivan. Also, the trade war between the United States and China is being eased without much commotion. During the 2020 pandemic, their trade was up 8.4%. This is a lot,” Dynkin said. “It looks like the Americans are gauging the risks and beginning to doubt whether the ‘dual containment’ tactic is realistic enough. Is this really so? We will know in a week’s time, after the presidents meet in Geneva.”

Alongside this, Dynkin said, Beijing’s policy towards Moscow has been changing, too. Whereas before China sought tight cooperation with Russia without seeking very close relations or the creation of a military-political union with Moscow, lately Beijing has demonstrated its readiness for a greater rapprochement with Moscow.

In January, China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi with great elegance transformed three “nots” into three “no’s”.

“Our relations have no end, no taboos for strategic partnership and no caps that might restrict them,” he said. This sounded very much like an open invitation to concluding a military-political alliance. The more so, since the Xinhua news agency widely published precisely this extract from the Chinese Foreign Ministry’ annual report. This must have sounded like a surprise to the West,” Dynkin said. “But, as is known, for every action there is a reaction. It is rather strange if anybody expected something different.”