C. Raja Mohan is artificially manufacturing false perceptions about a so-called “Sino-Russian alliance” in an attempt to mislead Indian policymakers into unilaterally sacrificing their objective national interests by dumping Russia and pivoting towards the US in response. He as a noted academic arguably knows that no such thing exists, which is why there are credible grounds for questioning his intentions in penning his latest piece about this phantasm.
Noted Indian intellectual C. Raja Mohan’s latest column for The Indian Express is chock-full of fallacies. Titled “A new Sino-Russian alliance: What are its implications for India?”, it’s premised on the false presumption that Russia and China are allegedly in an “alliance”, which he describes as driven by their desire to “dominate Eurasia”. Mohan concludes that it’s failed, however, and then urges India to pivot towards the US in response. Everything that he wrote is flat-out wrong and I’ll now explain why.
For starters, Mohan very strongly implies that President Putin informed his Chinese counterpart during their meeting a year ago in Beijing about his impending special operation, after which they agreed to their joint statement declaring a partnership “with no limits” and “no forbidden areas”. In reality, President Xi was caught just as off guard by Russia’s campaign in Ukraine as everyone else was, hence why he ensured that there would indeed be “limits” and “forbidden areas” to their cooperation.
For instance, neither Chinese nor Russian representatives denied President Biden’s televised claim in September that Beijing was tacitly complying with Washington’s sanctions against Moscow. Furthermore, despite unverified reports in recent days that private Chinese companies have been exporting non-lethal aid to Russia, this hasn’t thus far been backed up with the footage that’s been circulating across social media from the front over the past 11 months.
While there’s truth to Mohan’s conclusion that their much-ballyhooed joint statement was shaped by their shared interests vis-à-vis the West, he’s wrong in claiming that it “la[id] out a solid basis for jointly confronting [it]”. Rather, it was simply a statement of intent to jointly reform International Relations in the multipolar direction in alignment with the ongoing global systemic transition to that end, which the US is aggressively trying to delay in order to continue clinging to its unipolar hegemony.
By contrast, the Russian-Indian “Partnership For Peace, Progress, and Prosperity” that was agreed to during President Putin’s trip to Delhi a few months prior in December 2020 represents a concrete action plan for comprehensively strengthening their strategic partnership. Comparing these two documents reveals that the Russian-Chinese joint statement “On The International Relations Entering A New Era And The Global Sustainable Development” is mostly declaratory and with surprisingly paltry substance.
It's precisely because there veritably doesn’t exist a so-called “Sino-Russian alliance” like Mohan imagined that Beijing was able to so swiftly recalibrate its grand strategy in recent months by seriously exploring the parameters of a New Détente with Washington. The details are beyond the scope of this present piece but can be learned more about in the preceding hyperlink, which draws attention to the Sino-American superpower duopoly’s shared strategic interests in upholding bi-multipolarity.
The cascading crises that afflicted the previously globalized order upon which China’s superpower trajectory depends – the trade war, COVID-19, and the Ukrainian Conflict – sharply derailed its trajectory. India’s rapid rise as a globally significant Great Power, which is also beyond the scope of the present analysis but can be learned more about in the preceding hyperlink, facilitated the global systemic transition’s emerging tripolar phase and thus risks dooming bi-multipolarity to oblivion.
Having debunked Mohan’s presumption that a so-called “Sino-Russian alliance” exists and moving along to critiquing his several preliminary assessments about this phantasm, it should be said that he’s correct with his first one in claiming that the US’ actually existing Eurasian alliances have been strengthened. The US did indeed successfully reassert its previously declining unipolar hegemony over Europe in parallel with the de facto expansion of NATO to the Asia-Pacific via AUKUS.
Mohan’s second assessment that the aforesaid developments led to previously pacifist Germany and Japan’s remilitarizations is only partially correct, though. While it was exploited as the pretext for Olaf Scholz and Fumio Kishida to publicly unveil their countries’ regional hegemonic ambitions, this trend was already in progress prior to the onset of Russia’s special operation. In fact, it’s been occurring for at least the past half-decade as part of the US’ “Lead From Behind” stratagem in the New Cold War.
Each of those two’s permanent military, intelligence, and diplomatic bureaucracies (“deep state”) believe whether rightly or wrongly that their national interests are best served in contributing to the US’ efforts to uphold its unipolar hegemony. The American “deep state” itself is keenly aware of this as well, ergo why it encourages them to “share the burden” of doing so due to their stakes in shaping the global systemic transition to that end instead of towards multipolarity like where it’s naturally trending.
Germany and Japan are members of the US-led West’s Golden Billion so it therefore follows that they favor unipolarity in contrast to the jointly BRICS- & SCO-led Global South that favors multipolarity. This observation reinforces the point that Mohan’s second assessment is only partially correct since it accurately identified the pretext upon which Germany and Japan are now openly remilitarizing but failed to acknowledge that the intent to do so began during the last decade under America’s advice.
His third assessment is another mixed bag of truth. On the one hand, the US is indeed attempting to link together its Eurasian alliance system in Europe and Asia, but on the other, he’s once again flat-out wrong in claiming that “Russia and China thought they could dominate Eurasia through an alliance”. The only actor that’s ever tried to do this is the US, and it’s no longer hiding its intent like before after declaring that its efforts are nowadays driven by its desire to uphold the so-called “rules-based order”.
That concept, however, is just a euphemism for the selective imposition of double standards aimed at advancing America’s interests in preserving its unipolar hegemony. Mohan ignores this either out of ignorance or to avoid drawing unwanted attention to this unsavory reality of the US’ grand strategy. In any case, it’s factually false and historically revisionist for him to imply that America is only doing this nowadays as a supposedly defensive reaction to the so-called “Sino-Russian alliance”.
Mohan’s fourth assessment that “there is a growing prospect that Moscow will become even more beholden to Beijing” is a bald-faced lie. “Speculation About Russia Becoming A Chinese Puppet Ignores India’s Decisive Balancing Role”, as I observed last summer, yet he and other Indian intellectuals –most of whom like Bloomberg’s Bobby Ghosh or Jawaharlal Nehru University’s Happymon Jacob for instance are pro-US liberal-globalists – have yet to acknowledge this and are unlikely to ever do so.
As for his fifth and final assessment, Mohan inadvertently reveals his intent behind penning his latest piece, and it’s to urge India to dump Russia as soon as possible and pivot to the US in response to Moscow’s military policies supposedly now being influenced by Beijing. This is another of his bald-faced lies since Russia will never allow any third party to interfere with its historical reliability as India’s top military supplier, which is practically an axiom of International Relations by now.
Russia and India are jointly creating a third pole of influence for shattering the Sino-American bi-multipolar order that holds both of these multipolar Great Powers and the rest of the international community back. To abandon Delhi at Beijing’s behest would thus be equivalent to Moscow abandoning its own grand strategy to accelerate the global systemic transition’s final form of more complex multipolarity (“multiplexity”). Speculating about this is solely intended to impugn Russia’s reliability.
In closing, it can be concluded that Mohan is artificially manufacturing false perceptions about a so-called “Sino-Russian alliance” in an attempt to mislead Indian policymakers into unilaterally sacrificing their objective national interests by dumping Russia and pivoting towards the US in response. He as a noted academic arguably knows that no such thing exists, which is why there are credible grounds for questioning his intentions in penning his latest piece about this phantasm.
Unquestionably the US still has strong influence in India in the MSM and academy. Unfortunately, fools like C. Raja Mohan have long been the 'Quislings' who have allowed India to be pillaged by outsiders. There is considerable hysteria in India versus China because of the border conflicts in Aksai Chin, Ladakh etc., and due to China's support of Pakistan which provides a hub to their BRI Eurasian project. There is little suspicion of Russia and deep-rooted trust and respect; Indians have not forgotten that the Soviet navy in 1971 drove the US and UK navies out of the Bay of Bengal. But they DO appear to have forgotten that it was Britain - NOT China - which looted and subjugated India for 200 years.
Despite new studies showing some $45 trillion was stolen from India, turning it from one of the richer countries on earth to a desperately poor 'third world' one, and another Western study showing tens of millions of Indians were killed by the British - there is little anti-British hysteria but plenty of anti-China hysteria which extends to blaming China for the covid pandemic.
It would be truly disastrous for India to abandon ties with Russia which have actually strengthened after the invasion forced on Russia by NATO expansion, evidenced by massive increase in oil purchases in open defiance of US-UK orders. Disastrous for India as well, not just Russia. China knows it cannot abandon Russia because the next target of the Global SuperTerrorist will be China.
But it does not want to be provoked into an invasion of Taiwan, and frankly the parallels don't exist to the same extent. It is true the US is moving to place nukes in Japan and Australia and pressure AUKUS and the 'Quad' to strangulate pressure on China. This is what has forced China to make conciliatory overtures to the US. But in the end, the uneasy 'alliance' of the key members of BRICS - Russia, China and India - plus the massive economic benefits that both Russia and China plus dozens of countries will earn from BRI - will prevent US-sponsored liars like Mohan from causing Indian foreign policy to change.
And despite Andrew Korybko's repeated harping on his claims that China is seeking 'bipolarity' - there is no evidence in China's long history that China seeks 'hegemony' of the US, British or European sort. China is simply resuming its natural position in world economic affairs, where until the 18th century it was the world's biggest economy for 18 consecutive centuries without the kinds of war-crimes, invasions, genocides, slavery, ethnic cleansing or colonizations the West committed.
Korybko is unwittingly betraying the same anti-China bias that C. Raja Mohan is deliberately fueling.
It's obvious and historical that Russia\China are not natural allies... Sane western foreign policy has always aimed at exploit their reciprocal fears, but the late hegemonic hubris had the effect of pushing them together, out of survival instinct... I hope China and Russia wil develop on it, and realize the opportunities of alliance are stronger than the risks, but it will require work and faith... India should play a balancing act as long as it is possible