The China Syndrome
Biden Admin promises to "impose costs" on Beijing if it backs Russian war
The closer to his vest that President Xi plays his cards, the better for China. And the longer Beijing can cloud Washington’s lens when it comes to its position on the war in Ukraine, walk that fine line between friend and foe that “partner-adversaries” tend to tip-toe, the harder it will be for Washington to challenge Chinese influence on the matter, leverage them against the Russians, or the Russians against them. Xi seems to be flipping the script on Kissinger’s triangular diplomacy playbook that allowed President Richard Nixon to open up Mao’s China. Nixon wanted to play China off against the Soviets. Now Xi seems to be the one playing Russia and the U.S. off against each other, with China the beneficiary no matter who prevails in Ukraine (as long as it stays less-than-nuclear).