I was talking to a friend of mine earlier this week and we were discussing what was going on with Russia, Ukraine, and China. Recently, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin held talks in Moscow. This visit was seen as a symbol of the strong relationship between the two countries and their leaders. The talks focused on a range of topics, including economic cooperation, security issues, and the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.
Xi and Putin have had a close relationship for many years now. Since coming to power in 2012, Xi has made multiple visits to Russia to meet with Putin. During these meetings, the two leaders have discussed ways to strengthen ties between China and Russia. They have also signed various agreements that promote economic cooperation between their countries.
Xi proposed a plan for peace negotiations in Ukraine that would involve both Russia and China as mediators. He argued that this could be an effective way of ending the conflict without resorting to military force or other forms of coercion. While Putin welcomed this proposal, he also expressed skepticism about its chances of success given the current situation in Ukraine.
However, it remains unclear whether Xi’s proposal for peace negotiations in Ukraine will be successful or not given the current state of affairs there.
However, there was one thing that caught the eye of some:
At the end of the meetings in Moscow, Xi Jinping told Vladimir Putin:
Xi Jinping: Change is coming that hasn’t happened in 100 years. And we are driving this change together.
Vladimir Putin: I agree.
Xi Jinping: Please, take care, dear friend.
Vladimir Putin: Have a safe journey!
This sort of begs the question though…what is it that we actually saw around 100 years ago that Xi Jinping could have been alluding to? Well, I’m not exactly sure to be quite honest. 100 years ago, we had a lot going on and I’m sure he didn’t mean exactly 100 years. So, what could it be? My best guess is something like this:
100 years ago, Russia and China had a complex relationship. In the early 20th century, the two countries were in competition for influence in East Asia. This led to a number of conflicts between them, including the Russo-Japanese War of 1904–1905 and the Chinese Eastern Railway dispute of 1911–1917. However, they also maintained diplomatic relations during this time and signed several treaties, such as the Treaty of Peking in 1860 and the Treaty of St. Petersburg in 1881.
In 1923, Russia and China had recently established diplomatic relations after the end of the Russian Civil War and the establishment of the Soviet Union. The relationship between the two countries was generally positive and marked by cooperation, especially in the areas of trade and military assistance.
The Soviet Union provided military and technical support to the Chinese government, which was then led by the Nationalist Party under Sun Yat-sen. In return, China exported raw materials to the Soviet Union, including tungsten and antimony. The two countries also signed a treaty in 1924 that recognized their mutual border.
So, I don’t know if Xi is hinting at some sort of renewed friendship with Russia or what.