Russia will be difficult to avoid conflict with China over Siberia

Since 1990-ies territorial conflicts that marked the history of relations between Russia and China in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries seem to have come to naught. Anyway, at the sight of the revival of Chinese irredentism Moscow must be breaking into a cold sweat (Irredentism — a policy of the state, party or political movement for the unification of the people, nation, ethnos in a single state. It raises the question of the reunification of the territory, which is home to irredenta, with the titular state in which their ethnic group constitutes the majority).

Today, China appeared the hegemonic plans: to be implemented for this strategy concerns not only economy, trade and Finance, but also cultural, political and economic spheres. In recent decades, the territorial expansionism of China became a source of conflict with India (Kashmir) and Russia (Amur, Ussuri region). Today, first got control of the South China sea.

In the North of China officially there are no territorial claims, in particular to Russia, with whom relations were normalized in 1989 and deepened the Shanghai agreement of 1996 (focus on issues of security and covers a number of Central Asian countries). The last dispute has settled about ten years ago the transfer to China several Islands in the Amur river near Khabarovsk. The cooperation of the two giants in the field of military and security allows each of them to solve their own priority problems. Russia has concentrated a large part of the armed forces in the West to apply one way or another in the Caucasus, in the Crimea, in Ukraine and in Syria. China did the same in the Western Turkic provinces and Tibet (they have become an object of policy to expand the presence of the Han people among the population) and concentrated the bulk of military resources in the East in the framework of confrontation with the United States, Taiwan, and Japan. The marine and aviation program in the South China sea has reached impressive proportions. Its purpose is not only economic, but also military in nature: new deep-diving submarines may be able to go unnoticed with a base on Hainan.

However, there are associated with the history of the unwritten requirements. Even in times of disagreement, the Soviet Union and China Beijing demanded the return area of 2 million square kilometers. Today, in Heilongjiang province there are museums that are designed to attract public attention to the “unfair treaties” and imperialism of the European powers. All schools and universities hang a “historical” map of the great China of the XVII century, which includes the whole of Mongolia, the southern part (the most useful) of the Russian Far East and Siberia (about five million square kilometers), one third of Kazakhstan’s territory and a small area of Kyrgyzstan.

China is trying to gain a foothold in the three Northern countries (Russia, Mongolia, Kazakhstan) economic and demographic means, both legal and not.

In Mongolia, in addition to Chinese enterprises and land purchases, the biggest concern is in the future, element of a demographic nature. Due to the insufficient number of women in China, many men go abroad, in particular in Mongolia, where they get married at the local, settle and often open a small business. But born in such families in Mongolia children are considered as primarily “Chinese”!

Kazakhstan is rich in natural resources, is undergoing a process of economic colonization: partial and full sale of Kazakh enterprises (in particular in the energy sector), the emergence of Chinese companies, a huge project of a free economic zone near the border with China, the project of buying a million hectares of agricultural land on which to work the Chinese (now he is in limbo, because it causes an extremely violent reaction in the country).

Policy of the Eurasian Union of Putin and Nazarbayev is a means to counter this Chinese strategy.

In Russia, the Chinese penetration in many ways. Many Chinese settled (and, often illegally, to the authorities sometimes turn a blind eye) in the border regions. They open a business, marry Russian women. In the large cities now meet the Chinese markets, which is a prelude for the emergence of “Chinese cities”. Many Chinese enterprises come to Vladivostok. There is even a draft long-term lease to China town and the port. The total population of the regions froze, but the Russian, in fact, experiencing a small decline, and Chinese (it’s still relatively small) is growing rapidly. In Moscow, apparently, realized a long-term threat from this trend and has adopted various measures to promote the use of Russian labour, including in the agricultural sector. Finally, countries have negotiated the state and the largest enterprises of agreements in the field of energy, transport and natural resources of Siberia. Here again there is often the same stumbling block: the Chinese side wants to bring not only the enterprises, capital, know-how and markets, but also labor!

The Kremlin is aware of coming from China a threat in the long term: the actual Alliance between the two Eurasian giants may be only temporary.

It is still difficult to say what will be the new target China (which is the case such an outcome is likely, but 100% there is no guarantee) if he will take control of the South China sea: the East China sea with Taiwan, Mongolia or Kazakhstan? In the relations of the two countries, Russia can not allow China to cross a certain line, as it would mean her giving up sovereignty on the part of its own territory, and it will be fraught with very serious consequences.