Possibility of Trump Leveraging Russia against China

However, we have not studied another possibility: Could US president Trump leverage Russia against China?

In fact, before Obama began his pivot to Asia to contain China, the US has been quite successful in containing Russia with Chinese assistance. China supported the UN Security Council resolutions initiated by the West to contain Russia in the Middle East. It even suffered great losses in supporting the US in conducting regime change unfavorable to Russia in Libya.

However, when China continued to rise in spite of all the doomsday predictions of Western China analysts, the United States began to fear that its world hegemony might be replaced by China. That might become a reality if China’s growth rate, though had slowed down, remain much higher than the US. As mentioned above former US Obama administration began its pivot to Asia to contain China. Militarily, it planed to increase its military deployment from 50% to 60% in Asia. Economically, Obama had made great efforts to set up the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). What upset China most was US commencement to interfere with China’s disputes with its neighbors over the South China Sea. China regards its rights and interests in the South China Sea as its core interests so that it responded strongly.

As described in my previous posts, China was not strong enough to resist US containment alone. It has to unite with Russia to resist the US. China greatly pleased Russia by joining Russia’s veto of UN resolution initiated by the US aimed at bringing about regime change in pro-Russia Syria.

China’s great efforts to ally with Russia were but its diplomacy to subdue the US. As the West led by the US had been containing Russia with great political and military pressure, Russia welcomed China’s efforts to ally with it. Due to the historical enmity and conflicts of interests between China and Russia described in my previous posts, their alliance could be regarded as a marriage of convenience.

People’s marriage is mostly broken due to the affair with a third party. An affair between the US and Russia would have been a wise strategy to subdue China with diplomacy.

US Strategy Illiteracy

I have mentioned times and again US strategy illiteracy. Henry Kissinger has the wisdom that the US has to have better relations with China and the Soviet Union (Russia now) than the relations between China and the Soviet Union. He succeeded in establishing relations with China to scare the Soviet Union and make the latter seek détente with the US.

On the contrary, as described above former US president Obama pushed China and Russia into each others’ arms by his efforts to contain both countries. As a result, when President Donald Trump succeeded Obama, through Russian President Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping’s joint efforts, Russia and China have overcome their historical enmity and conflicts of interests and become quite close allies.

However, not all American people are strategy illiterates. Trump seems to know the need to break Russia-China alliance by improving US relations with Russia. Perhaps, he knows the importance of leveraging Russia against rising China. In his election campaign, Trump often praised Russian President Putin while attacking China. It gave people the impression that Trump would improve US relations with Russia when he had won the election and become US president. But due to previous Cold War there has been inveterate hostility between the US and Russia; therefore, that idea is quite unpopular among lots of American people. For example Trump’s former defense secretary James Mattis regards Russia as the biggest threat.

Trump is certainly not so stupid as to regard Russia as a friend instead of an enemy. He only wanted to drive a wedge between Russia and China to isolate China. That will be the reverse of Henry Kissinger’s move in improving US relations with China to counter the Soviet Union. Now Trump wants to improve US relations with Russia to counter China.

It is perhaps a wise move to contain China, but is it possible for Trump to do so, given US domestic disgust of Russian President Putin? Can Trump overcome fierce opposition from US politicians and media, especially the opposition from his own Republican Party?

Given the traditional enmity between the two giant neighbors Russia and China, it would have been possible for the US to leverage Russia against China if Obama had not committed the mistake of containing them both simultaneously and thus turned them into allies instead of enemies. When Trump tried to improve US-Russian relations, Russia-China alliance seems to have been well-established.

However, there are the historical enmity and conflicts of interests between Russia and China Trump may exploit. In addition China’s Belt and Road initiative has given rise to new conflicts of interests between the two for Trump to exploit.

Article by Chan Kai Yee

7 Comments on “Possibility of Trump Leveraging Russia against China”

  1. […] Source: Tiananmen’s Tremendous Achievements – Possibility of Trump Leveraging Russia aga… […]


  2. komonsense says:

    From Sputnik news: royal marines to be scrapped; army reduced by 10,000 , down to 70,000; smallest ever in its history. Someone commented that the sun had already set on the British Empire. Game over.


    • Steve says:

      No marines means no amphibious landing force no LHDs, but it’s practically impossible to dissolve or entirely scrap a special marine force (too valuable). The scrapped marine special force will probably be assimilated into other special forces like the SASR (special air services regiment – also specialised in marine, air, sea assault) and other specialty units.
      Most of the foreign forces like the US, UK, Australian, French, Turkish, etc, fighting in the Middle east are highly trained special forces. Special forces incur much lesser costs in different landscapes of deployment, far more effective & superior to regular soldiers. China has over 10 special forces groups each specialising in various task.

      Many countries are downsizing its regular army, in the case of UK – Yes, they are financially broke, the
      Setting Sun has relegated the british empire into vampires of darkness.


      • komonsense says:

        China and Russia should instigate uprisings in the non white commonwealth cuntries, to put a constant drain on England’s resources. They should rebuild Argentina’s air force, and offer them subs for training…..


        • Steve says:

          U noticed that the UK remained silent on the Taiwan issue because of Argentina. China will do just that, provide J10CE, PL missiles and weaponry to the Argentina military. The 3 handed creatures knows very well, if they supported Taiwan, China will support Argentina militarily.


          • komonsense says:

            Thanx for pointing that out. The only difference will be that China will do real harm to Britain , through Argentina, but not vice versa. About bloody time. The sooner the better.


  3. Steve says:



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