Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Playing with Fire

The Russians are seriously pissing me off. I want to be their friend. I want to be their ally.

But for whatever reason, they think it is statesmanship to encourage the Chinese to take us on in the Pacific over Taiwan. New war games with the Chinese will allow the Chinese to practice smashing the Taiwanese (as I've noted, the Chinese don't consider Taiwan "a third country"--or any country at all) and give the Russians a chance to show off weapons they'd like to sell to China for this purpose:

Moscow and Beijing will stage a mock intervention to stabilize an imaginary country riven by ethnic strife. But they insist the "Peace Mission 2005" exercises — which started Thursday and include some 10,000 troops from land, sea and air forces — aren't aimed at a third country.

The war games began with the chiefs of the Chinese and Russian general staffs starting strategic consultations at the Vladivostok headquarters of Russia's Pacific Fleet, China's official Xinhua News Agency reported.

Analysts agree Russia and China are unlikely to team up against a common foe. They say the maneuvers are more of an exhibition of Russian arms — including its long-range strategic bombers, which can carry nuclear weapons — in the hope of luring Chinese buyers.

Look, I know this isn't some alliance. The Russians aren't about to fight alongside the Chinese. But this is exercise is seriously annoying and I hope that in the Big Book of Who's Screwing With Us maintained by the Department of State, they put a big check mark next to Putin's Russia over this little display of phantom superpower status. The Russians may think it is the height of cleverness to point the Chinese away from Russia and embroil them in a confrontation with America, but the Russians are being too clever in arming the Chinese. Note to Russia, bombers can fly inland too.

You guys think you're up to defending your Far Eastern provinces short of nukes if the Chinese decide to go north? Good freaking luck. And don't expect too much help from us. Not without a steep price, that is. We won't forget this little stunt.