From Adversaries to Partners? Chinese and Russian Military Cooperation after the Cold War

From Adversaries to Partners? Chinese and Russian Military Cooperation after the Cold War

From Adversaries to Partners? Chinese and Russian Military Cooperation after the Cold War

From Adversaries to Partners? Chinese and Russian Military Cooperation after the Cold War

Synopsis

When China and Russia established a "strategic partnership" in 1996, both nations declared that they would further develop military cooperation in various fields. Tsai examines the course of this military cooperation to reveal the nature of the military ties with the hopes of determining whether these two traditional adversaries have put aside historical legacies and mutual mistrust to create a full-fledged military partnership. After analyzing the motives and concerns of both powers, Tsai concludes that, while progress has been made in reducing military tensions in border regions, the level of trust has not increased substantially. The nature of these ties remains extremely fragile.

Excerpt

This study investigates the limits of Chinese and Russian military cooperation after the end of the Cold War. It argues that the development of Sino-Russian “partnership” has been strained and has yet to create a stable political foundation for close military cooperation. To achieve their own state interests, China and Russia have attempted to pursue military cooperation at two levels: first, defusing remaining points of tension through confidence-building measures (CBMs); and second, developing new areas of cooperation, including arms transfers and military-technical cooperation.

Although progress has been made in improving Sino-Russian bilateral military-security relations, many limits have remained. Lingering mutual distrust and conflicts of interest have obstructed the furthering of their military cooperation. the nature of Chinese and Russian military cooperation has remained fragile. CBMs, arms transfers, and military-technical cooperation may underscore the existence of a limited cooperative security relationship. However, the sense of mutual distrust, and contradictions of geopolitical and security interests, could eventually become major sources of tension in their military relationship. in order to develop these arguments, this study reviews these two countries' military relationship from the point of view of history, and examines the political foundations and major components of Chinese and Russian military cooperation after the end of the Cold War.

For the completion of this study I owe a special debt of gratitude to Dr. Elaine Holoboff, Dr. Joanna Spear, and Dr. Dov Lynch. This study has benefited greatly from their assistance and advice. I would also like to thank Professor Margot Light and Professor Rosemary Foot for making

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