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Wednesday, 21 August 2019

Diverging interests

The US-China trade war is causing a dilemma because neither party wants to blink first. A recent Bloomberg Politics article suggests that Trump has blinked first by delaying "new tariffs on a wide range of consumer products such as smart-phones, laptops and toys until December". Bloomberg: "Beijing may sense its best option is to wait Trump out as the election approaches".

A late 2017 Patribotics article ("Exclusive: China Syndrome – Xi and Putin Partnered in U.S. Election Interference") argued that that China "was part of the 2016 US Election attack" mainly because of "Donald Trump’s opposition to the Trans Pacific Partnership or TPP".

The (massive) joint China-Russia military exercises following Trump's election also suggest a closer cooperation (eg, Economist-2018EuroNews-2018, Guardian-2018CNA-2019).  

However, Trump's 2020 reelection campaign has (very) different interests for China and Russia: 

Moreover, Nina Khrushcheva, the great-granddaughter of former Soviet Union premier Nikita Khrushchev, and Professor of International Affairs, has a different theory about Russia supporting Trump during the Russian interference in the 2016 US elections:
"I disagree with the Mueller report's assertion that Russia made an organized and concerted effort to elect Trump. Whatever actions Russia took, they were aimed at undermining Hillary Clinton. Trump, with his sloppy overtures toward Putin, emerged over time as a means for Russia to advance its goal of keeping Hillary out of the White House." (Project Syndicate interview)

If Russia opposes to and China benefits from America's Democratic party, diverging geopolitical interests between China and Russia will soon emerge. Russia may benefit from Trump ruining the American economy. China needs a healthy US economy and free trade, including less tariffs.

"And we went our separate ways without having understood each other. As in this world nobody understands the other easily." A quote by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, a German writer and statesman.

Separate Ways (1972) by Elvis Presley

I see a change is coming to our lives 
It's not the way that it used to be 
And it's not too late to realize our mistake 
We're just not right for each other


Note: all markings (bolditalicunderlining) by LO unless stated otherwise

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