The US can't break the Russia-China alliance

China is still claiming neutrality when it comes to Russia’s war against Ukraine. As that position is becoming increasingly unconvincing, the US is putting pressure on China to choose sides, threatening with economic sanctions if it continues its tacit support of Russia. But the deeper, structural, geopolitical factors in play mean that China’s alliance with Russia is here to stay. The US seems unwilling to recognise this, but does so at its peril, argues Alexander Korolev.


China’s position on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine attempts to reconcile the irreconcilable. On the one hand, Beijing calls for respecting the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries, including Ukraine, but on the other hand, it advises that Washington must respect Russia’s legitimate security concerns in the region, including in Ukraine. Beijing’s attempts to walk a tight rope of diplomacy have not been remarkably successful.

As the war drags on and the Wes

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