A Russian-US alliance will be required to “control” china, IMHO, which means changing our approach to NATO.
NATO is unnecessary if there is USA-RUSSIA partnership.
China will USE North Korea as a pawn to play their chess game, along with the Philippines of Duterte stays in power–values will get in the way of strategy!!
“Thucydides distinguished between Athens and Sparta by pointing out that Athens was close to the sea and had an excellent port, Piraeus. Sparta, on the other hand, was not a maritime power. Athens was much wealthier than Sparta. A maritime power can engage in international trade in a way that a landlocked power cannot.
Therefore, the Athenian is wealthy, but in that wealth there are two defects. First, wealth creates luxury and luxury corrupts. Second, wider experience in the world creates moral ambiguity.
Sparta enjoyed far less wealth than Athens. It was not built through trade but through hard labor. And thus, it did not know the world, but instead had a simple and robust sense of right and wrong.
The struggle between strength from wealth and strength through effort has been a historical one. It can be seen in the distinction between the European Peninsula and Russia. Europe is worldly and derives great power from its wealth, but it is also prone to internecine infighting.
Russia, though provincial, is more united than divided and derives power from the strength that comes from overcoming difficulty. The country is in a geographically vulnerable position; its core is inherently landlocked, and the choke points that its ships would have to traverse to gain access to oceans could be easily cut off.
Therefore, Russia can’t be Athens. It must be Sparta, and that means it must be a land power and assume the cultural character of a Spartan nation. Russia must have tough if not sophisticated troops fighting ground wars. It must also be able to produce enough wealth to sustain its military as well as provide a reasonable standard of living for its people-but Russia will not be able to match Europe in this regard.
So it isn’t prosperity that binds the country together, but a shared idealized vision of and loyalty toward Mother Russia. And in this sense, there is a deep chasm between both Europe and the United States (which use prosperity as a justification for loyalty) and Russia (for whom loyalty derives from the power of the state and the inherent definition of being Russian).
[There is also a major difference in what people want as a result, where in the US, achievement motive is more dense and ambition is frequent, in Russia, quality of life which is NOT ambitious but largely “avoidance-related” is important above achievement–30% of global innovation emerges from Russia–1-2% is monetized in Russia, which is why the ER-ORANGE oligarchs are easily unchallenged, but managed as a tool by the state–the rogue oligarchs are ostracized, killed, or imprisoned!]
This support for the Russian nation remains powerful, despite the existence of diverse ethnic groups throughout the country.
All of this gives the Russians an opportunity. However bad their economy is at the moment, the simplicity of their geographic position in all respects gives them capabilities that can surprise their opponents and perhaps even make the Russians more dangerous.”