Bolton warns US against ‘sitting still’ as China and Russia grow closer
Former national security adviser John Bolton warned the U.S. against “sitting still” as China expands its role in the world and grows closer to Russia.
“We’re sitting still, and the Chinese, the Russians, Iran, North Korea, and several others, are moving to shore up their relations and threaten us in a lot of different places,” Bolton told radio host John Catsimatidis on the WABC 770 morning show “Cats Roundtable” on Sunday.
Bolton’s warnings come after Iran and Saudi Arabia announced on Friday that they would normalize relations and reopen their embassies in a diplomatic breakthrough brokered by China.
“It’s an indication that the Saudis and others are trying to hedge their bets with China and Russia, because they don’t think the United States has the resolve and the fortitude necessary to do what they need to do to protect the world against Iran and its intentions,” Bolton said.
“The Chinese have a strategy they’ve been following,” he added. “We kind of wander around from day to day.”
Russia also appears to have moved closer to China, as top U.S. officials have warned that Beijing is “strongly considering” providing Moscow with lethal aid for its war in Ukraine.
However, China has also increasingly sought to paint itself as a neutral arbiter in the war in Ukraine, releasing a 12-point peace plan and calling for a cease fire and peace talks alongside Belarus. Notably, Belarus is one of few countries that has stuck by Russia amid its invasion of Ukraine.
“One of the biggest winners of the war in Ukraine has been China,” Bolton said. “If Russia were to win, and at the maximum retake all of Ukraine, that would be a victory for China’s ally that would strengthen China as well.”
“But, frankly, if Russia continues to get chewed up in Ukraine, that just makes Russia more dependent on China,” he continued. “So China wins there as well.”
However, Bolton noted that in a reversal of China-Russia relations during the Cold War, Beijing is now the senior partner in the relationship.
“It’s exactly right to say that we’re watching Russia slip increasingly under Chinese control,” he said. “This is China’s alliance it’s putting together, and Russia is the junior partner.”
“That’s not good for any of us. I’d like to find ways to pry Russia away from China,” Bolton added.
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