Putin Playing Chess with a Pigeon

“What’s it like playing chess with Obama?” asks a top aid of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Putin replies, “It’s like playing chess with a pigeon. First it knocks over all the pieces, then it shits on the board, and finally it struts around like it won.”

If this answer was Putin’s response to Obama’s behaviour, surely it is more relevant applying to the current US President Donald Trump than Obama.

Putin outmaneuvered the West in Ukraine and most recently in Syria. Most importantly, he has outflanked Western sanctions through increased financial and economic cooperation with China and other Eurasian powers.

No matter what happens in the West, Russia’s recent power plays are creating tectonic shifts in geopolitics. This could be the largest shift in global power since World War II.

Ultimately, this could threaten the US dollar’s role as the world’s premier reserve currency. Actually, it’s not just Russia we have to watch. China, Iran, and other Eurasian powers are working with Russia on an ambitious goal. They’re trying to end US dominance in global trade, finance, and military power.

These countries want to create what Russian officials call a “multipolar world.” It would replace the unipolar world that’s existed since the early 1990s, when the Soviet Union collapsed. The US has been the world’s sole superpower ever since.

In short, Russia and its partners want to completely redraw the lines of global power. Here’s how they’re doing it…

First, there’s China’s New Silk Road. It’s the biggest and most comprehensive infrastructure project in all of human history. The plan is to link Asia to Europe via modern land transit corridors.

The project includes high-speed rail lines, modern highways, fiber optic cables, energy pipelines, seaports, and airports. Much of this new infrastructure will flow through Russia.

See the source image

If everything goes as planned, the New Silk Road will be a reality by 2025.

This will free Russia, China, Iran, and others from dependence on ocean transport. At that point, control of the high seas, which the US has had for many decades, won’t be nearly as important.

In addition to the New Silk Road, a set of interlocking international organizations is emerging. These new organizations are supporting Russia’s plans for a multipolar world.

Trade – The Eurasian Economic Union

The Eurasian Economic Union (EEU) is a Russian-led trading bloc.

The EEU allows for free movement of goods, services, money, and people through Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Armenia. It’s gradually expanding as countries along the New Silk Road remove trade barriers.

Security – The Shanghai Cooperation Organization

In the military and security realm, there’s the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), formed in 2001. It could become a NATO of the East.

Foundation members include Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. India and Pakistan joined later in June 2017.

SCO summit in Ufa, Russia in 2015

At the Astana summit in July 2005, with the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq foreshadowing an indefinite presence of US forces in Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan, the SCO requested the US to set a clear timetable for withdrawing its troops from SCO member states. Shortly afterwards, Uzbekistan requested the US to leave the K2 air base.

That same year, in 2005, the United States applied for observer status in the SCO, but was rejected.

~ by Joel Huan on September 17, 2020.

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