- Russia is a colony of China which is fighting a proxy war with the West.
- The Far East is now a joint venture between Russia and China.
- Russia gave a contested island to China – smaller than Germany and bigger than Poland
- the end of Siberia for the Russian Federation
- The loss of Siberia is reminiscent of the loss of Alaska (1867) for Russia
On 17th October 2023, Russia gave a contested island to China. The island is Bolshoi Ussuriysky Island (Большой Уссурийский остров “Heixiazi Island” 黑瞎子島) between the Ussuri and Amur rivers. Since 14th October 2004 the island had been shared between China and Russia. There was no apparent reason to rediscuss that agreement. In August 2023 China published a map which included the island within Chinese territory. Two months later the map became reality. A prophecy or a sign of an ongoing diplomatic discussion?
The Far East is now a joint venture between Russia and China. Russia has assigned 32 million hectares of agricultural land in Siberia to China. This is an area roughly smaller than Germany and bigger than Poland. The size is equivalent to all cultivated land in Ukraine.
Reuters reports it was the EPT grain export company which came to an agreement with the China Chengtong State Corporation. This was announced by Putin during his visit in Beijing for the Road and Belt Initiative conference (17-18 October 2023). The China Chengtong gрoup had already opened a Moscow Greenwood World Trade Centre in 2017.
If Russia had conquered Ukraine, it would not have noticed the loss of control of the land in Siberia. Now China has access to a huge area of agricultural land, while Russia has not obtained extra cultivable land. Russia’s land has somehow shrunk. For China the best outcome was to obtain economic control of the land in the East while Russia got stuck in a war in Ukraine. That would make Russia even more dependent on China.
Russia is in a surreal situation as regards the embargoes imposed by the West. It now imports western goods via neighbouring countries (whose imports from Europe have skyrocketed). The neighbouring countries now effectively control the commercial routes into Russia. A bit like the tail wagging the dog. Many of these countries have deep ties with China. China has a stranglehold of the Russian Federation which will now have to move in unison with its powerful south-eastern neighbour.
China is also obtaining new supplies of energy. The Power of Siberia 2 pipeline will travel through Siberia and Mongolia to China.
This spells the end of Siberia for the Russian Federation. While it has almost no one living there (a mere 33 million spread over 13 million square kilometres or 5 million square miles, almost twice as large as Western Europe), the land is strategic. The loss of Siberia, due possibly to the quagmire of the war in Ukraine, is reminiscent of the loss of Alaska (1867) after the defeat in the Crimean war (1853-1856).
If Russia controls more ‘European’ than ‘Asian’ areas, it is in deep trouble, given the wall it is finding with the countries which border it in the West: Finland, Baltic States, Poland, Ukraine, Romania. While retaining more control of its ‘European’ half, Russia has become a colony of Chinese interests.
India may look to distance itself from such Russian interests. That would be a first, given that the Soviet Union and India had very good diplomatic relations.
China will dictate the future of Russia. The Chinese interest in Russia is exclusively to access by land to the rich European consumer market and to provide it with Chinese made goods. That will require an opening of the Russian and European trade routes. China will need to have a regime change in Russia, without a breakup of the Federation. The reason is simple: if a Chinese product enters Russia, it will be able to be transported to Europe by crossing only one border. The trans-Siberian railway line effectively could connect Beijing to Berlin directly. To achieve this, China needs not only to colonise Russia economically, but also to change the ruling class of the Kremlin, so as to establish good neighbourly relations between Russia and the West.
Russia is no longer a protagonist but a colony of China. More information – https://www.kallipolis.co.uk/
Copyright 2023 Frederick Lauritzen
Lt Col Stuart Crawford’s latest book Tank Commander (Hardback) is available now