The Sino-Russo Entente Can Produce Many Opportunities, Not Problems, For India
The Times Of India’s latest editorial about the potential impact of the newly solidified Sino-Russo Entente on India can be described as baseless fearmongering at best and malicious information warfare at worst.
The popular Times Of India (TOI) published a very brief editorial on Tuesday titled “The new BFFs: Xi-Putin lovefest can produce many problems for India, including for its tightrope walk on Ukraine”. Their self-described team of “senior journalists with wide-ranging interests” collectively wrote that “New Delhi has to acknowledge that Moscow and Beijing have now established an all-weather friendship. Coming on top of the China-Pakistan nexus, that’s a tough pill to swallow.”
They then speculated that “Plus, the Russia-China combo will pose challenges for India across geographies. Chinese naval adventurism could increase in the Indian Ocean Region since Moscow now has Beijing’s back in East Asia…Additionally, there are growing signs of a China-Russia-Iran trilateral understanding – especially after Beijing mediated a truce between Tehran and Riyadh – that could hit Indian connectivity and energy projects in West Asia.”
The TOI then concluded that “Russia and China could team up [in Africa] to expand their footprint at the cost of the West, also hitting strategic initiatives like the India-Japan sponsored Asia-Africa Growth Corridor. The involvement of Russia’s Wagner militia in coup-hit Mali and Burkina Faso in recent years is a case in point. Add to this the combined threat of Russian-Chinese non-conventional cyber and influence operations. Taken together, India’s tightrope walk over Ukraine just became a lot trickier.”
The editorial wasn’t signed by any individuals so it’s unclear who these “senior journalists with wide-ranging interests” are, but whoever they may be, they’re actually indistinguishable from propagandists. The reality is that the Sino-Russo Entente can produce many opportunities, not problems, for India. Contrary to the worldview of India’s Western-aligned liberal-globalist intelligentsia, which is disproportionately represented in that country’s media, things have never been better for their country.
To explain, this week’s visit by President Xi to Moscow solidified the Sino-Russo Entente, thus taking the impending trifurcation of International Relations to its next natural level. The preexisting de facto New Cold War bloc of the US-led West’s Golden Billion is now matched by those two’s dual pole of influence, which leaves India to informally lead the Global South like it’s been priming to do since assuming chairmanship of the G20 late last year.
The vast majority of the international community doesn’t want to take sides in the worldwide struggle over the direction of the global systemic transition, instead preferring to emulate India’s successful multi-alignment policy of balancing between those blocs and other emerging powers. They share the Entente’s multipolar vision, but most also still have mutually beneficial economic-financial ties with the Golden Billion that wants to restore unipolarity, ergo the need to tread carefully between them.
As the world’s most populous developing country that’s already its fifth-largest economy and is also geostrategically located in the center of the Eastern Hemisphere where all these complex processes are converging, India has the unique opportunity to pave the path for likeminded states to follow. The Global Majority is looking for a leader to rally behind who’ll promote their shared interests in neutrally balancing between the Golden Billion and the Entente, exactly as India has thus far masterfully done.
The grand strategic trajectory is therefore set for India to complete the trifurcation of International Relations by informally assuming the role of leading the Global South, which will then restore a semblance of predictability and therefore stability to the ongoing systemic transition. Having placed the latest events in their appropriate context by explaining the historically unprecedented opportunity that India now has on the world stage, it’s time to address the specific points made in the TOI’s editorial.
First, despite warming Russian-Pakistani relations over the past half-decade, there’s no chance whatsoever that Moscow will ever support Islamabad to the extent that Beijing does unlike what that outlet very clearly implied might soon be in the cards. Those two’s growing economic-energy ties are apolitical, directly benefit the still largely impoverished Pakistani people, and help prevent that country’s collapse amidst its ever-worsening cycle of crises catalyzed by last April’s US-backed post-modern coup.
Second, Russia is absolutely against anything that China or India could do to one another that would exacerbate their bilateral tensions and create space for the US to divide-and-rule them. It’s unrealistic to speculate that Moscow will take responsibility for guarding Beijing’s eastern flank in order to free up the People’s Liberation Army to focus on “containing” Delhi in the Indian Ocean Region. In the event of another crisis in Sino-Indo relations, Russia will remain neutral but informally retain its pro-Indian tilt.
Third, the Chinese-brokered Iranian-Saudi rapprochement is immensely beneficial for India since the Kingdom’s forthcoming investments in the Islamic Republic that its Finance Minister just officially eclared interest in could optimize the North-South Transport Corridor (NSTC) to Russia. Moreover, all five parties are expected to use national currencies more often in their transactions along those trade corridors that crisscross Iran, which will accelerate de-dollarization processes to their mutual benefit.
Fourth, Russia’s newfound appeal in Africa is helping that economically promising continent rise up against the Golden Billion’s neo-imperialism, which will unlock its full potential in the emerging Multipolar World Order. Under no circumstances would Moscow seek to squeeze its decades-long strategic partners in India out of this landmass, let alone by ordering private military contractors to attack their investments there, since it wants Delhi to play a greater role in Africa and not a lesser one.
And finally, Russia has never once waged so-called “non-conventional cyber and influence operations” against India, nor will it ever. To the contrary, that Eurasian Great Power has always defended its South Asian strategic partner from the Golden Billion’s information warfare attacks, including most recently when Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Zakharova supported India’s investigation into the BBC. Russia’s publicly financed mass media are no exception either and always stand in solidarity with India.
For these reasons and others that are beyond the scope of this response to elaborate on, the TOI’s latest editorial about the potential impact of the newly solidified Sino-Russo Entente on India can be described as baseless fearmongering at best and malicious information warfare at worst. Far from producing many problems for India, the impending trifurcation of International Relations that was taken to its next natural level after President Xi’s visit to Moscow actually produces many opportunities for it.