17 March 2007

Stabbed In the Back By Its Own Knife?

Russia has been selling large quantities of sophisticated military equipment, machines, and armament to its neighbor China. A lot of Russian functionaries have made a lot of money from this weapons trade. So what has gone wrong?
Russian sales to China of advanced weapon systems, including ships, fighters, radar and communications gear, have left many in Washington and in the region nervous. But now that relationship appears to heading into an autumn.
Andrei Chang, editor of the Hong Kong-based Kanwa Defense Review, said China is cutting the umbilical cord to Russia.
“As far as Russia-China military aviation cooperation is concerned,” he said, “the spring is already over, and naval cooperation between the two countries is also over.”
Chang said Beijing is moving toward indigenous production of many of the systems it originally bought in mass from Moscow, thanks to reverse engineering.
“Russia has been quite discontented with China’s persistent practice of importing a very small fraction of Russian intact naval systems and then making imitation versions of the equipment,” he said. “Many of the subsystems, like radars and the naval gun for the 054A FFG frigate, have been copied from Russian products, which indicates that the Chinese will simply copy Russian technology to build more domestic vessels.”
Reuben Johnson, a Ukraine-based aerospace and technology analyst and consultant, views Moscow’s open arms policy toward Beijing as a comic tragedy.
“China has sent legions of its own specialists to Russia and Ukraine to study the entire design process of all manner of weapon systems,” he said. “In several cases, Russian design bureaus have developed a piece of kit that is an analog — an analog and not a copy — of an existing Russian system, and presented the blueprints, design documentation and a handful of working models to their Chinese customer.

So the Chinese buy a few models, then copy or imitate them? Where have we heard this story before?

Russia is learning the same lesson about China that the US and the rest of the western world will also have to learn. The Chinese intend to take whatever knowledge and technology it must from the barbarians. Then China will learn to make whatever it needs itself, without dependence on inferiors. Finally, China can take its rightful place in the world.

China intends to grow. First, China intends to re-possess all the lands that were ever considered part of "China." Taiwan, large parts of mineral-rich Siberia, and more. The details of the grand plan may not be fully worked out, but the end is fully in mind.

China is in a race with its own rigidly incompetent style of government. Strong forces are working toward a massive collapse of the Chinese infrastructure. As long as outside investors and "business partners" decide not to notice what the Chinese government plans for the long term, China's expansionists may succeed in their plans.

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Blogger Audacious Epigone said...

I'm not shrewd enough to identify poetic irony. But this situation strikes me as something close.

Mother Russia, birthplace of the one who uttered "The capitalists will sell us the rope we hang them with," has sold weapons systems to a rapidly growing PRC that has lots of excess men and an insatiable hunger for natural resources--the kind that are in abundance in the vast, sparsely populated Russia east of the Ural mountains.

And Russia doesn't exactly elicit sympathy from, well, anyone. That dying country is on its own.

Saturday, 17 March, 2007  
Blogger al fin said...

China considers a big chunk of Siberia to belong to China, not Russia. Chinese immigrants have quietly become the largest group of residents in several Siberian towns and cities. China needs the space and resources that Russia currently claims.

One third the population of Moscow is muslim. The ethnic Russians are not reproducing, but the muslim population of Russia more than make up for that. Soon muslims will outnumber the ethnic Russians. Apartheid will only take Russia so far after that.

Russia is under incredible pressure from several directions, and has only its tendency to choose authoritarianism as its form of government, to blame. All the oil, gas, and minerals in Siberia will not save Russia from its fate.

Saturday, 17 March, 2007  

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“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act” _George Orwell

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