By Jianli Yang & Lianchao Han – Apr 7, 2022

Last month in Poland during his much-anticipated speech on the Russian invasion of Ukraine, President Joe Biden said Vladimir Putin “cannot remain in power.” Biden’s aides quickly walked back the statement, claiming the president was not calling for regime change. But our belief is still that he was expressing his true desire that Putin would no longer rule Russia, a sentiment that many other democratic leaders probably share. “The words of a president matter,” Biden has said more than once.

But the democratic world’s wish for Putin to collapse will likely be frustrated by Beijing’s next strategic move in the unfolding crisis.

After Biden’s nearly two-hour videocall with Xi Jinping on March 18, the media widely believed that the US had obtained two bottom-line commitments from China: no military aid to Russia and no economic aid to Russia in direct violation of the United States-led economic sanctions. Even if China maintains these two commitments, they do not indicate an essential shift from its refusal to condemn Russia’s aggression and call it an invasion or even a war. Indeed, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) continues to criticize the West for cornering a nuclear power, and continues to denounce the international community’s economic sanctions against Russia… [Continue Reading]