This is a machine translation of an article by Director Elena Panina of the Russtrat Institute

Pentagon theorists predict scenarios

MOSCOW, December 29, 2022, RUSSTRAT Institute.

The RAND Corporation (an analytical center working for the US Department of Defense) published a report in which it presented its vision of the confrontation between the united West and Russia, which is based only on the escalation of the conflict, and in fact – war.

Pentagon theorists predict scenarios for the future in which a Third World War is likely to occur. Massive strikes on enemy territory in this “analytical work” are modestly referred to by the authors as”kinetic impact”.

The report itself is titled ” A Response to Russia’s Limited Attack on NATO during the War in Ukraine.” That is, Western strategists are confident that sooner or later one of the countries of the North Atlantic Alliance, waging an undeclared war against Russia on the territory of Ukraine, will receive a “surrender”. What happens next?

The authors of the work, allegedly justifying the escalation of the conflict by Washington, immediately declare that the United States and its allies have committed themselves to support Ukraine and, no less, “punish Russia.” After provoking Moscow to respond, the US Department of Defense will “raise the degree” that will put the world on the brink of nuclear catastrophe. The Pentagon expects that the Russians will not go to the end and break down. Maybe.

RUSSTRAT wrote earlier about how painfully the united West is looking for Russian “red lines”.

Pentagon analysts are confident that there will be no strike on America: they hope that when Russia’s patience breaks, Poland will “get it” –  after all, it is there that there are transshipment bases for weapons and mercenaries who are constantly sent to Ukraine to kill Russians.” Any other country whose authorities hate the Russian Federation will also do-it will perform the role of a kamikaze

Provocateurs assume that after another artillery and missile strike on Russian targets, which will be carried out thanks to US intelligence, Russia will finally shoot down the Pentagon’s spy satellite over the area of its air defense, and in response to this, the Russian Armed Forces will be attacked by NATO forces. But there is a point: in response to NATO aggression, the Russians can use nuclear weapons, and the consequences will be disastrous for everyone.

Therefore, in the opinion of our enemies, initially, it is necessary to “only” undermine Russia’s ability to resist: this means that the West should conduct propaganda, glorify the United States and continue to intimidate the Russians. It also provides for diplomatic and economic pressure and attempts to destabilize the situation inside Russia with the help of a fifth column.

Anglo-Saxons are not ready to stop poking their nose into other people’s affairs: they are afraid, because then the whole world will see that Washington and its accomplices can be put in their place, America will have to stop parasitizing other states, and then the United States will finally collapse. As for the European Union, the contradictions between its members became obvious quite a long time ago. Over the past year, the crisis has only worsened. Therefore, the US bets on its “vassals” are imprudent.

The following is clear: the world has become multipolar, and Washington’s arbitrariness as a “hegemon” is becoming a thing of the past. The goals of the Free Trade Zone defined by Russia will be achieved. The world map – economic and political- is rapidly changing. American strategists do not yet realize that it is best to accept the obvious.  This will be better for everyone – and for the United States in the first place.

All of the writers in the Russian sphere are expressing real concern about the situation today.  And I agree, we are on the brink of some nexus, which could be a military conflagration.  But, bear in mind that the US and NATO combined, cannot stand as a force against Russia and the proof in that pudding, is that Russia has weaponry that is years in advance of anything that the US-NATO can field and she is actively increasing the size of her professional military.  As many analysts and writers rightly report, Russia is preparing for a major war.  She cannot do it by herself.

So, having defined the current situation according to Elena Panina, which is a common view in Russia, there is another observation.  Our purely Russian writers have a problem with China.  This is expressed in comments such as .. We respect China, BUT, they don’t have this or that weaponry.  Or, China is not ready.  But ready for what?

Assuming we are looking toward something like a world war resembling the second world war (God Forbid!, where most countries in the world took part or had some other role that they played), or the enemies decide that Russia is the lesser problem and they can attack them first (and then the nuclear issue raises its very ugly head), what will China do?  The time to minimize China to a footnote or a throwaway comment and express the current world changes as mainly Russian, is over.  And that has nothing to do with my personal deep thanks to Russia for wrestling us out of a criminal empirical structure.

First, China is ready.  I will support that statement and then we can look at What is China ready, or not ready for, exactly?

Chinese forces and Russian forces are integrated to a degree that is not generally easily visible.  This is from a western source and a little older, but it is imminently readable.

While this ends in 2020 and diffuses the issues, the forces of Russia combined with China are intensifying their ability to fight a war as a combined force.   I can hardly think of a time during this year that they were not doing joint military exercises and with the reasonably slow rate of joint exercises on the list posted above, I estimate it has the level of joint exercises has at least doubled this past year.  Beijing sent all three of its forces to the massive Vostok 2022 exercises, where part of this was set even in Venezuela.  China sent its forces to participate in SCO military training, on Russian territory. China’s participation in the drills “aims to deepen pragmatic and friendly cooperation between the militaries of the participating countries, enhance the level of strategic cooperation among all participating parties, and enhance the ability to jointly respond to various security threats,” Chinese Defense Ministry spokesperson Col. Tan Kefei said last week. Do you really think China is not ready, to work with Russia?

Second, China is on a war footing.

Mr. Xi on Nov. 8 made his first visit in the new term to the joint operations command center of the CMC (Central Military Commission). He said the world was “undergoing more profound changes unseen in a century” and “stressed that China’s national security is facing increased instability and uncertainty, and its military tasks remain arduous”.

“The entire military should devote all its energy to and carry out all its work for combat readiness, enhance its capability to fight and win, and effectively fulfill its missions and tasks in the new era,” said Mr. Xi, who in October began a third five-year term as leader of the Communist Party. Mr. Xi, at last month’s Party Congress in Beijing, was also appointed chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC) for another term.

There have been a slew of promotions in the CMC:   General He Weidong (65) was named the new Vice-Chairman of the CMC. General Zhang Youxia (72), a close associate of Mr. Xi, was confirmed for another term as Vice-Chairman.  General He was one of three PLA Generals promoted who were actively involved in the Western Theatre Command (WTC) which borders India.  General He served as the Army (ground forces) commander of the WTC from 2016 until 2019, a period spanning the 2017 Doklam crisis. He later headed the Eastern Theatre Command, which is responsible for Taiwan.    Also promoted was General Xu Qiling (60), who has been appointed as one of 205 members of the Party’s new Central Committee. He succeeded General He as WTC Army Commander in 2020 and was subsequently moved to the CMC’s Joint Staff department. The current head of the WTC, General Wang Haijiang (59), was also appointed to the Central Committee.

People with experience in making wartime decisions are being appointed to critical and crucial positions.

Third, The PLA is becoming an army fit for today.   Since coming to power in 2012, Xi Jinping placed national security and military matters at the top of Beijing’s policy agenda.  Under his anti-corruption campaign, the PLA has been decommercialised, professionalised and modernised. The PLA’s military doctrine has shifted from emphasizing battle readiness to fighting and winning wars.

As Beijing’s external security environment deteriorates, China’s military priority has shifted from combat readiness — ‘preparing to tackle external security threats’, to combat effectiveness — to ‘fight and win the future military showdownOnly with a sophisticated army, equipped with modern warfare combat capabilities, and a resilient and sustainable economy can China defend itself and safeguard its core national interests against external geopolitical instabilities.  China is busy honing its war fighting capabilities, they are in a continuous process of military modernisation and professionalisation,  Their military training has intensified to training under combat conditions and an emphasis on joint, force-on-force, and high-tech training. The forces are politically and ideologically extremely loyal.

Fourth, Mr Medvedev visited Xi Jinping just a week or so ago acting as the highest level emissary from Russia to China.  There was a change in nomenclature, in language which is highly significant.  What we knew as a comprehensive strategic partnership, is now a comprehensive strategic partnership of coordination.  In these top level meetings, it is clear that Mr.Medvedev carried messages to Xi Jinping.  The preparatory phase for decisions has now been completed and Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping will agree to finalize whatever messages Medvedev carried, as soon as tomorrow (Friday), when they have a video conference scheduled.  No, it is not traditional New Year’s wishes between leaders as it is not Chinese New Year.   Tomorrow, Putin and Xi Jinping will hold a meeting closed to the media and on the agenda are regional security threats on the borders of Russia and China, says Kremlin Press Secretary Peskov.  It is not hard to guess what regional security threats are on the borders of Russia and China.

Fifth, while we may accept that Russia is way ahead of China in very spectacular, literally breaking the bounds of common physics, weaponry, we have to balance that with China’s deep cohesion as a civilization.  They work incredibly hard together, they march in lockstep and thrive because of that cohesion.  That is one factor of balance between the relative strength of Russia and of China.

Images from the 2019 Parade
No one matches Chinese soldiers in precision marching.

The other factor of balance is China’s tremendous ability to churn out weaponry at a speed and with a manufacturing capability that nobody can best.  Then we need to mention their agility and ability to throw a large number of STEM grads at a problem of logistics.

Sixth, while there are indications that Japan will join AUKUS, the Chinese civilization still have an almost bloodthirsty bone to pick with Japan as a result of both the first and second Sino-Japanese wars.  I read what the Chinese people say, and cannot but come to the conclusion that they will wipe Japan off the map with relish.   Yet, they are a serious people and they are not disrespectful or take decisions about the lives of others on a whim.  They also do what they say they are doing and do not play.

While this is not a treatise on weapons, what I do know, is that China is massively big, and while Russia may have stupendous weaponry, China can churn out missiles like candy factories churn out sugar candies, and handle logistics like a boss.

What should China be ready for?  The US, NATO that is trying to creep in, AUKUS?  China is ready and they are serious and they do not stop and they do not play – they keep on coming.  From primary school the kids have military maneuvers included in their class schedule.  All universities have military drills for students.  Serious ones.  Wanna fight these boy scouts?

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Seven – China is a nuclear country.  They have a ‘no first use’ nuclear posture.  Yet, they are increasing their nuclear capability as we speak.

What is China ready for?

China is walking down the path of diplomacy and negotiations, similar to Russia at the end of last year when Russia presented the US and NATO with proposals to correct the security issues in Europe.  The US ignored that.

China understands that this path of diplomacy and negotiations will fail because they fully understand that the US is serious about declarations that China is the enemy.  As we saw the Russian diplomats jump into action this past year, the Chinese diplomats are taking action.  Back in January, in an unusually direct statement, the Chinese ambassador to the US  warned the US.   Qin Gang stated;  “If the Taiwanese authorities, emboldened by the United States, keep going down the road for independence, it most likely will involve China and the United States, the two big countries, in a military conflict.

China usually speaks in more general terms, such as saying that the U.S. is “playing with fire.”  It is unfortunate that the hegemonic forces do not understand those terms fully.  What a comment like that means, is that we will not hesitate to fire on you with everything we have, and we will keep on coming.  China is simply using the Taiwan card to bookend a bigger warning.  Be very sure, this was an ambassadorial warning of war.

In August, the Chinese ambassador to Australia, Xiao Qian said Beijing is willing to “use all necessary means” to reunify Taiwan with China, saying there’s no room for compromise.  Again Taiwan is used to soften the broader perspective.  Be sure, again this was an ambassadorial warning of war.

China is also not mincing words whatsoever.  As Russia knows, China knows who their enemy is as stated by the Chinese defense spokesperson:  “… stuck to the idea of self-interests first, the US has either waged wars against other countries or created conflicts, causing massive casualties and displacement of innocent civilians....Facts have proved more than once that the US is the direct threat to the international order and the culprit of the regional turbulence,”

China no longer deserves only footnote status from our military writers, analysts, and commentators  China is ready to go to war with a ferocity unimaginable if the hegemon insists on going that way.