Beijing-Moscow is already on; Berlin-Beijing is a
work in progress; the missing but not distant link
By Pepe Escobar
August 27, 2020 "Information
Clearing House" - We have seen how China
planning all its crucial geopolitical and
geoeconomic moves all the way to 2030 and beyond.
What you are about to read next comes from a
series of private, multilateral discussions among
intel analysts, and may helpfully design the
contours of the Big Picture.
In China, it’s clear the path ahead points to
boosting internal demand, and shifting monetary
policy towards the creation of credit to consolidate
the building of world-class domestic industries.
In parallel, there’s a serious debate in Moscow
that Russia should proceed along the same path. As
an analyst puts it, “Russia should not import
anything but technologies it needs until it can
create them themselves and export only the oil and
gas that is required to pay for imports that should
be severely restricted. China still needs natural
resources, which makes Russia and China unique
allies. A nation should be as self-sufficient as
That happens to mirror the exact CCP strategy, as
delineated by President Xi in his July 31 Central
And that also goes right against a hefty
neoliberal wing in the CCP – collaborationists? –
who would dream of a party conversion into
Western-style social democracy, on top of it
subservient to the interests of Western capital.
Comparing China’s economic velocity now with the
US is like comparing a Maserati Gran Turismo Sport
(with a V8 Ferrari engine) with a Toyota Camry.
China, proportionately, holds a larger reservoir of
very well educated young generations; an accelerated
rural-urban migration; increased poverty
eradication; more savings; a cultural sense of
deferred gratification; more – Confucianist – social
discipline; and infinitely more respect for the
rationally educated mind. The process of China
increasingly trading with itself will be more than
enough to keep the necessary sustainable development
The hypersonic factor
Meanwhile, on the geopolitical front, the
consensus in Moscow – from the Kremlin to the
Foreign Ministry – is that the Trump administration
is not “agreement-capable”, a diplomatic euphemism
that refers to a de facto bunch of liars; and it’s
also not “legal-capable”, an euphemism applied, for
instance, to lobbying for snapback sanctions when
Trump has already ditched the JCPOA.
President Putin has already said in the recent
past that negotiating with Team Trump is like
playing chess with a pigeon: the demented bird walks
all over the chessboard, shits indiscriminately,
knocks over pieces, declares victory, then runs
In contrast, serious lobbying at the highest
levels of the Russian government is invested in
consolidating the definitive Eurasian alliance,
uniting Germany, Russia and China.
But that would only apply to Germany after
Merkel. According to a US analyst, “the only thing
holding back Germany is that they can expect to lose
their car exports to the US and more, but I tell
them that can happen right away because of the
dollar-euro exchange rate, with the euro becoming
On the nuclear front, and reaching way beyond the
current Belarus drama – as in there will be no
Maidan in Minsk – Moscow has made it very clear, in
no uncertain terms, that any missile attack from
NATO will be interpreted as a nuclear attack.
The Russian defensive missile system – including
the already tested S-500s, and soon the already
designed S-600s – arguably may be 99% effective.
That means Russia would still have to absorb some
punishment. And this is why Russia has built an
extensive network of nuclear bomb shelters in big
cities to protect at least 40 million people.
Russian analysts interpret China’s defensive
approach along the same lines. Beijing will want to
develop – if they have not already done so – a
defensive shield, and still retain the ability to
strike back against a US attack with nuclear
The best Russian analysts, such as Andrei
Martyanov, know that the three top weapons of a
putative next war will be offensive and defensive
missiles and submarines combined with cyber warfare
The key weapon today – and the Chinese understand
it very clearly – is nuclear submarines. Russians
are observing how China is building their submarine
fleet – carrying hypersonic missiles – faster than
the US. Surface fleets are obsolete. A wolf pack of
Chinese submarines can easily knock out a carrier
task force. Those 11 US carrier task forces are in
So in the – horrifying – event of the seas
becoming un-sailable in a war, with the US, Russia
and China blocking all commercial traffic, that’s
the key strategic reason pushing China to obtain as
much of its natural resources overland from Russia.
Even if pipelines are bombed they can be fixed in
no time. Thus the supreme importance for China of
Power of Siberia – as well as the dizzying array of
The Hormuz factor
A closely guarded secret in Moscow is that right
after German sanctions imposed in relation to
Ukraine, a major global energy operator approached
Russia with an offer to divert to China no less than
7 million barrels a day of oil plus natural gas.
Whatever happens, the stunning proposal is still
sitting on the table of Shmal Gannadiy, a top
oil/gas advisor to President Putin.
In the event that would ever happen, it would
secure for China all the natural resources they need
from Russia. Under this hypothesis, the Russian
rationale would be to bypass German sanctions by
switching its oil exports to China, which from a
Russian point of view is more advanced in consumer
technology than Germany.
Of course this all changed with the imminent
conclusion of Nord Stream 2 – despite Team Trump
taking no prisoners to sanction everyone in sight.
Backdoor intel discussions made it very clear to
German industrialists that if Germany would ever
lose its Russian source of oil and natural gas,
coupled with the Strait of Hormuz shut down by Iran
in the event of an American attack, the German
economy might simply collapse.
There have been serious cross-country intel
discussions about the possibility of a US-sponsored
October Surprise involving a false flag to be blamed
on Iran. Team Trump’s “maximum pressure” on Iran has
absolutely nothing to do with the JCPOA. What
matters is that even indirectly, the Russia-China
strategic partnership has made it very clear that
Tehran will be protected as a strategic asset – and
as a key node of Eurasia integration.
Cross-intel considerations center on a scenario
assuming a – quite unlikely – collapse of the
government in Tehran. The first thing Washington
would do in this case is to pull the switch of the
SWIFT clearing system. The target would be to crush
the Russian economy. That’s why Russia and China are
actively increasing the merger of the Russian Mir
and the Chinese CHIPS payment systems, as well as
bypassing the US dollar in bilateral trade.
It has already been gamed in Beijing that were
that scenario ever to take place, China might lose
its two key allies in one move, and then have to
face Washington alone, still on a stage of not being
able to assure for itself all the necessary natural
resources. That would be a real existential threat.
And that explains the rationale behind the
increasing interconnection of the Russia-China
strategic partnership plus the $400 billion,
25-year-long China-Iran deal.
Bismarck is back
Another possible secret deal already discussed at
the highest intel levels is the possibility of a
Bismarckian Reinsurance Treaty to be established
between Germany and Russia. The inevitable
consequence would be a de facto
Berlin-Moscow-Beijing alliance spanning the Belt and
Road Initiative (BRI), alongside the creation of a
new – digital? – Eurasian currency for the whole
Eurasian alliance, including important yet
peripheral actors such as France and Italy.
Well, Beijing-Moscow is already on.
Berlin-Beijing is a work in progress. The missing
link is Berlin-Moscow.
That would represent not only the ultimate
nightmare for Mackinder-drenched Anglo-American
elites, but in fact the definitive passing of the
geopolitical torch from maritime empires back to the
It’s not a fiction anymore. It’s on the table.
Adding to it, let’s do some little time traveling
and go back to the year 1348.
The Mongols of the Golden Horde are in Crimea,
laying siege to Kaffa – a trading port in the Black
Sea controlled by the Genoese.
Suddenly, the Mongol army is consumed by bubonic
They start catapulting contaminated corpses over
the walls of the Crimean city.
So imagine what happened when ships started
sailing again from Kaffa to Genoa.
They transported the plague to Italy.
By 1360, the Black Death was literally all over
the place – from Lisbon to Novgorod, from Sicily to
Norway. As much as 60% of Europe’s population may
have been killed – over 100 million people.
A case can be made that the Renaissance, because
of the plague, was delayed by a whole century.
Covid-19 is of course far from a medieval plague.
But it’s fair to ask.
What Renaissance could it be possibly delaying?
Well, it might well be actually advancing the
Renaissance of Eurasia. It’s happening just as the
Hegemon, the former “end of history”, is internally
imploding, “distracted from distraction by
distraction”, to quote T.S. Eliot. Behind the fog,
in prime shadowplay pastures, the vital moves to
reorganize the Eurasian land mass are already on.
Pepe Escobar is
His latest book is
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