Russia and China aligned against NATO. What’s behind the US warning

The two countries “are increasingly sharing a toolkit” to weaken the West, Ambassador Smith said, citing disinformation and infrastructure as levers in the hands of Beijing and Moscow. The alliance is well advanced but more commitment from governments is needed, she added

Russia and China “are increasingly sharing a toolkit that should worry NATO”. To say it is Julianne SmithUS ambassador to NATO, in an interview with Financial Times. “There is no doubt” that the two countries, she added, “are working to divide their transatlantic partners. And we are very much aware now, we all have a deeper appreciation of these efforts and are intent on addressing them.” Energy supplies and cyber security are among the elements of this kit. “We have seen that they share hybrid tactics,” she said. “I think China watches very closely how Russia relies on disinformation and things like coercion or energy security, malicious or malicious cyber operations.”

What happened with the war in Ukraine, with some Chinese media busy pointing the finger at NATO, is the result of the Covid-19 experience (just think of the fake news of the Italians who would have sang “Thank you, China” from the balconies). Already in March 2020 the US newspaper Axios he spoke of “a page” borrowed from China “from the Russian disinformation handbook”. Laura Rosenbergerthen head of the Alliance for Securing Democracy e senior fellow of the German Marshall Fund today senior director China to the White House National Security Council, explained that there are three tactics “that Beijing has applied in its propaganda campaign on the coronavirus that clearly resemble the Russian strategy”: the dissemination of “multiple conflict theories”; the amplification of “conspiracy websites” which, according to the expert, do not offer any transparency on funding but promote those theories “that the state intends to support” and the coordinated use of Twitter accounts of diplomats and embassies, together with the media of the regime, to give more impetus to conspiracy theories.

In this phase marked by the competition between superpowers and the clash between models (democracies against autocracies), Washington is urging NATO members to harden their position towards China, which in the new Strategic Concept published in June was defined for the first once one of the “challenges” for the alliance. Of concern are Beijing’s military developments, threats to critical Western infrastructure and its “limitless” partnership with Moscow. Some countries, however, seem reluctant to embrace the US position for fear of jeopardizing trade and economic relations with China or for fear of “distractions” from support for Ukraine.

The work to get governments to recognize the challenges posed by China and address them is “well underway,” Smith said, adding that NATO will seek to achieve “milestones” at ministerial meetings and summits of leaders. “There is a part of this that belongs to national governments, national decisions, national instruments, legislation,” he stressed. “We are talking about protecting our values, protecting our unity and protecting ourselves from some hybrid tactics that the Chinese especially like to rely on.”

(Photo: USNATE)

Russia and China aligned against NATO. What’s behind the US warning –