The Fight Over Eurasia Will Determine the Destinies of the World - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
The Fight Over Eurasia Will Determine the Destinies of the World

Two retired U.S. Army colonels and combat veterans, Daniel Davis and Douglas Macgregor, writing separately in 19FortyFive and the American Conservative, respectively, warn that Russia has deployed a half-million combat forces in southern Ukraine, Belarus, and western Russia, including 1,000 rocket artillery systems, hundreds of tactical ballistic and cruise missiles and drones, 5,000 armored vehicles, more than 1,000 tanks, and hundreds of bombers, helicopters, and fighter planes, poised to attack Ukrainian forces in the wake of recent devastating air attacks on Ukraine’s power grids, communications and transportation infrastructure, and energy production.

Macgregor opines that “[i]t is now possible to project that the new Russian armed forces that will evolve from the crucible of war in Ukraine will be designed to execute strategically decisive operations.” Davis adds that Russian President Vladimir Putin may use “every conventional tool in his military chest to subdue Ukraine” because, if he fails in this war, he may be forced from power in 2023.

Meanwhile, in the midst of the conflict in Eastern Europe and rising tensions in the South China Sea, Chels Michta, an intelligence officer in the U.S. Army, explores the geopolitical danger of what he calls a “deepening China-Russia axis.”

Michta contends that for practical purposes China and Russia are strategic allies in an effort to lessen and eventually exclude U.S. influence from the Eurasian landmass. The United States, he writes, “is not in competition with Russia and China on two discrete fronts in Eastern Europe and the Indo-Pacific. Rather, it is competing against a new Sino-Russian alliance in which both countries are moving in tandem to threaten the West.” Michta warns that this alliance “raises the prospect that Beijing and Moscow could team up to lock the United States out of Eurasia.”

Michta notes that the United States fought two hot wars and one Cold War in the 20th century to prevent a hostile power or alliance of powers from dominating Eurasia. These were bloody and costly wars that no sane person wants to repeat. And Michta believes that today’s challenge confronting the United States is greater “especially when factoring in the combined resources of the Sino-Russian alliance and the relative lack of military power in Europe.” Michta notes the growing areas of cooperation between China and Russia, including weapons R&D, energy, technology, and economics. And while the U.S. has “pivoted” to the Indo-Pacific, Russia’s aggression in Ukraine may mean that the European rimland may once again hold “the key to control of Eurasia.”

Russia’s recent deployment of massive World War II–sized conventional forces on the Ukrainian border, combined with its recent air campaign, which has devastated Ukraine’s infrastructure, may mean that the European rimland will once again become a target of a hostile alliance of Eurasian great powers. China, Russia’s strategic partner, is already attempting to dominate the Asian rimland. If we are not careful, the United States and its allies in Europe and Asia may face a situation similar to that which they confronted when Germany and Japan threatened to control the European and Asian rimlands.

It was the great Dutch-American geopolitical thinker Nicholas Spykman who warned in two seminal books — America’s Strategy in World Politics (1942) and The Geography of the Peace (1944) — that the power balance in Europe and Asia is of everlasting concern to the United States. “Who controls the Rimland,” Spykman wrote, “rules Eurasia; who rules Eurasia controls the destinies of the world.”

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