Ukrainian tensions have aroused fear that the United States is shifting its focus from opposing China.


The brewing crisis between Ukraine and Russia and the accompanying US involvement have raised new concerns within the Indo-Pacific region, which Washington has declared as a long-term strategic focus, especially in countering the Chinese government.

Some experts and US legislators fear that the European crisis will distract the US from its commitment to the Indo-Pacific, especially with regard to Taiwan, where China has the autonomy to watch itself. Because of this, they share the same predicament as Ukraine. -Against Russia.

In these concerns, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken traveled south to Australia on February 8 to strengthen Washington’s policies and goals in the Indo-Pacific. He landed in Melbourne on Wednesday and met with the “QUAD” group’s counterparts Australia, India and Japan.

The link between the crisis in Ukraine and geopolitics in the Indo-Pacific was clearly focused when Russian President Vladimir Putin met with Chinese leader Xi Jinping shortly before the opening of the Winter Olympics in Beijing.At the joints statementBoth leaders supported each other’s stocks in Ukraine and Taiwan.

“The Russian side reaffirms its support for one China principle, confirms that Taiwan is part of China’s inviolability, and opposes any form of independence of Taiwan,” the Kremlin said on February 4. A joint statement released today said.

The two countries jointly opposed Washington’s Indo-Pacific strategy and called it a threat. They also opposed external interference in “common adjoining areas” that indirectly pointed to Ukraine and Taiwan.

“The two countries oppose the formation of a camp that opposes the closed block structure in the Asia-Pacific region and are very cautious about the negative impact of the US Indo-Pacific strategy on regional peace and stability,” the joint statement said. rice field. ..

Meanwhile, as tensions between Ukraine and Russia increase, Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen will meet at the National Security Council on January 28 to study how the conflict affects a long-term conflict with the Chinese administration. Ordered to create a task force for.

Blinken will have broader consequences if Russia is allowed to invade Ukraine after meeting with QUAD counterparts on Friday, as it “contains” countries like China from continuing to pursue military aggression. I emphasized that.

Mr. Brinken delves into Russia’s policy toward Ukraine and China’s policy toward Taiwan, saying that “one country cannot forcefully change the borders of another country” or “instruct other countries to make their choices and their policies.” “.

“Even if Europe is half the world away, if we allow impunity to challenge these principles, it will have an impact here as well. Others are paying attention,” Blinken said. I told the group.

“Others are looking to all of us to see how we react. That’s why it’s so important that we have this solidarity. Through diplomacy. , We will do everything we can to avoid conflict and prevent aggression, but likewise, we will act decisively if Russia renews the aggression. “

Epoch Times Photo
Ukrainian armored vehicles will drive on February 10, 2022, during a military exercise near Kharkiv, Ukraine. (AP / Andrew Marienko)

Is the United States distracted?

In these growing concerns, some experts blamed the United States for creating “hysteria” in Ukraine, adding that it would benefit China. Others have stated that Washington is well focused and he is interested in both Europe and the Indo-Pacific.

Walter Roman, director of the Asian Studies Center at the Heritage Foundation, a Washington-based think tank, told The Epoch Times that the United States has not been distracted by the Indo-Pacific.

“The United States is a global powerhouse with an interest in both regions. China remains the world’s greatest threat to US interests and values, and our long-term strategic focus remains on Asia,” Roman said. He said in an email.

But New Delhi-based think tank United Services Institute Associate Madabdas Narapat said the United States should overcome the crisis in Ukraine and Russia to become a “major cheerleader” and take better action. Said it was.

“The hysteria caused by the Biden administration against Ukraine includes frequently repeated but unsourced comments that” 100,000 Russian troops are ready to invade the Ukrainian border. ” This is when such developments have taken place within Russian territory for several years, “Narapat told The Epoch Times in an email.

“From Asia, Biden seems to be trying to bring Washington back to the world of the past, when the Atlantic Ocean has been the center of global tension and activity for nearly 30 years. Now the Indo-Pacific I’m taking over that role, “he added.

US Senator Josh Hawley (R-Miss) seems to share the same concerns. February 2 letter Brinken sought an explanation for the US government’s support for Ukraine’s support for NATO, and Senator warned that “more and more powerful China is seeking hegemony in the Indo-Pacific.”

To prevent this, “The United States must move resources to the Indo-Pacific to refuse bids for China’s regional control,” Hurley wrote.

“This means that the United States can no longer bear the heavy burdens it once had in other parts of the world, including Europe. On the contrary, it prioritizes denying China’s hegemonic ambitions in the Indo-Pacific. To do, we have to do less in those secondary theaters, “he continued.

Meanwhile, the Biden administration continues to warn about the development of Ukraine.President Joe Biden Said NBC News on February 10 states that American citizens remaining in Ukraine should leave the country immediately.

“We’re not dealing with terrorist organizations. We’re dealing with one of the largest troops in the world. It’s a very different situation and things can go crazy quickly.” Biden said.

The State Department also issued a recommendation on Thursday warning that “if Russian military action occurs somewhere in Ukraine, the government will not be able to evacuate US citizens.”

After Friday’s QUAD meeting, Blinken warned that “there are very annoying signs of Russia’s escalation.”

“We are always in a window where aggression can begin, and for clarity, it also includes during the Olympics,” he said.

Narapat said Asian countries are closely watching the situation. He said the “rebound” of America’s focus from the Indo-Pacific to Europe, the refocus from China to Russia, would not be welcomed by countries opposed to the Chinese Communist Party’s expansionism in the Indo-Pacific.

Epoch Times Photo
On January 7, 2022, during training in the northern city of Keelung, Taiwanese soldiers are standing next to the domestic Corvette-class vessel, the Tuo Chiang-class corvette (R). (SAM YEH / AFP via Getty Images)

Anti-American alliance

Andres Ortega Klein, Senior Research Fellow, Elcano Royal Institute, a Madrid-based think tank I have written In a commentary on February 8, China has taken a complex stance on the Ukrainian crisis, which is related to the agenda in the Indo-Pacific.

“There are two main goals for this. It is to measure the US reaction to the possible crisis between Beijing and Taiwan. And to prevent NATO itself from interfering with the Indo-Pacific, from now on 6 this year. It’s one of the major issues that needs to be resolved before the NATO summit in Madrid in June, “said Klein.

Mr Roman of the Heritage Foundation said China’s support for Russia stems from mutual conflict with the United States.

“China’s interest is in broadly supporting Russia as part of its anti-American meeting. From a Beijing perspective, the US problem is good for China,” he said.

But what happened in Ukraine does not mean that Beijing will take military action towards Taiwan, Roman said.

Narapat believes it is a mistake to argue that if Washington did not respond to support Ukraine, it would boldly design China in Taiwan.

“Just as 9/11 turned attention from China to the Middle East and Afghanistan, the hysteria around Ukraine is diverting the necessary attention from China’s activities,” he said, when China shifts US attention. He added that he would be the most profitable. From East Asia and the South China Sea to Ukraine.

“The more Biden shifts its focus from China to Russia, and to radical groups in Afpac and the Middle East, the more Washington can contribute to Beijing’s strategic interests.”

Venus Upadayaya

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Venus Upadhayaya reports on various issues. Her area of ‚Äč‚Äčexpertise is geopolitics in India and South Asia. She reports from the highly volatile Indian-Pakistan border and has contributed to India’s mainstream print media for almost a decade. Community media, sustainable development and leadership continue to be her key areas of interest.

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