In response to the United States and its allies’ attempts to isolate Russian President Vladimir Putin over the Ukrainian invasion, Moscow is holding major military drills involving China and India. In the week-long Vostok-2022 war games beginning Thursday in Russia’s far east, over fifty thousand troops and five thousand pieces of military equipment, including one hundred and forty aircraft and sixty warships, will participate, including naval exercises in the Japanese Sea.
In response to the US and its allies’ attempts to isolate Putin over the Ukrainian invasion, Russia is holding major military drills involving China & India. The weeklong Vostok-2022 war games will involve over 50000 military personnel & 5000 pieces of equipment.#wargames pic.twitter.com/QqypOH5sVP
— Live News Now (@LiveNewsNow6) September 2, 2022
Furthermore, to demonstrate Russia’s military might, the powerful drills are meant to illustrate the country’s military strength amid the conflict in Ukraine. There will be troops from several ex-Soviet nations, as well as China, India, Laos, Mongolia, Nicaragua, and Syria, participating in the drills. Russian General Staff chief, General Valery Gerasimov, will personally oversee the exercises. In addition, Chinese and Russian navies in the Sea of Japan will “practice joint action to protect the marine economic activity, maritime communications, and support for ground troops,” according to the defense ministry.
Russia Rising Cooperation with China
Chinese President Xi Jinping and the Russian leader have developed solid personal relations to strengthen a “strategic alliance” between the former communist rivals as they are locked in a rivalry with the United States. The U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi recently visited Taiwan, causing tensions between China and the U.S. Vladimir Putin claimed the U.S. purposefully fomented global instability by supporting Ukraine and Taiwan.
Analyst Alexander Gabuyev notes that Beijing should demonstrate its ability to pressure the U.S. globally. According to Gabuyev, “China will have no choice but to strengthen its military partnership with Russia if the pressure persists on Beijing” due to the joint maneuvers with Moscow. “Moreover, this has direct implications for the U.S. and Japanese interests.”
On the other hand, the Kremlin wants to show that its military is strong enough to counter Ukraine and other threats. Gabuyev said that the Russian leadership demonstrated that everything is proceeding according to plan and that the country and its military are well-equipped for maneuvers and special operations.
Strengthen Pragmatic and Friendly Cooperation
Chinese participation in the military drills aims to strengthen pragmatic and friendly cooperation among participating countries’ militaries, boost strategic collaboration, and intensify the capability of responding to various security threats together, according to a spokesperson for the Chinese defense ministry.
Several joint military exercises have occurred between Russia and China recently, including drills for the fleet and patrols by long-range bombers over the East China Sea and the Sea of Japan. In addition, as part of a joint military drill, the Russian military deployed to the Chinese region for the first time last year.
The prospect of Russia and China forming a military alliance has been rejected in the past, but Putin has stated that such an alliance is not impossible. In addition, he noted that Russia had shared highly sensitive military technologies with China, which has significantly improved Chinese defense capabilities.
Despite persistent tensions with neighboring China and Pakistan, India has avoided taking sides in the Russian civil war in Ukraine. It is partly due to its dependence on Moscow as its leading arms supplier. However, in a procedural vote at the United Nations Security Council last week, the nation voted against Russia for the first time on the issue. In this way, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky could speak via video link to the body.