Russia, China: Alliance to Watch
The rapid political and economic revival of Russia and China over the past few years should shock the world. Both have risen out of social and economic doldrums to become key global powers. Individually, these nations wield considerable global influence; combined, their power would be daunting. Two events of late indicate that such an alliance is already forming.
In the recent Yukos debacle, the Russian government essentially forced a massive, privately-owned oil company (Yukos) into bankruptcy, thereby forcing it to auction off assets, including a giant subsidiary company. This subsidiary (Yuganskneftegas) is now owned and operated by the Russian government.
Late last December, according to the New York Times, a senior Russian official said that one of China’s state oil companies, China National Petroleum Corporation (cnpc), could be offered a 20 percent share in Moscow’s newly acquired oil company (Dec. 31, 2004). This, combined with remarks made by Russian President Vladimir Putin during a visit to Germany in December, provided strong indication that China is about to play an intimate role in Russia’s energy industry. “We don’t rule out that cnpc would take part in the production of Yuganskneftegas,” remarked Putin (Financial Times, London, Dec. 22, 2004).
This potential oil deal between Russia and China is hugely significant: After it is finalized, it will mean hardware and manpower from both nations will be combined to develop the Russian oil and gas industry. Russia will welcome China’s money, manpower and technical expertise, while Beijing will be thrilled at the easy access to Russia’s mammoth oil fields.
In another sign of a rapidly strengthening alliance, for the first time in history Russia and China have agreed to conduct joint military exercises in the last six months of this year. Editor of Russia in Global Affairs Magazine Fyodor Lukyanov put the Sino-Russian war-games in context: “It’s a response to a series of political defeats Russia has suffered, most recently in Ukraine,” he told the Associated Press. “It’s a reminder that Russia is still a great military power” (Dec. 27, 2004).
There is more to war-games than simply training soldiers and testing military tactics: Military exercises are one of the best ways to show off military prowess. And joint exercises are a direct reflection of the state of relations between two nations. In this case, they provide proof that a strong Sino-Russian alliance is building.
The Trumpet has long foretold this alliance. To see where it is leading, request a free copy of our booklet Russia and China in Prophecy.