Russia has nuclear plans to stop an invasion of China

The Russian army has recently disclosed some documents that outline their plans for using nuclear weapons under certain circumstances, particularly in case of aggression or invasion by a foreign country such as China.

These plans have been prepared to protect the sovereignty of the Russian State in the event of a collapse or defeat of its conventional forces. Such contingency plans are not uncommon and are expected from any military organization.

Russia has chosen to maintain a substantial inventory of tactical nuclear weapons, despite the potential for reduction after the signing of the 1987 INF Treaty. This decision is based on the belief that these weapons serve as a last-resort option. The strategy is intended to ensure the sovereignty of the Russian state in the event of a potential collapse or overwhelming defeat of its conventional forces.

Evaluation of Russian nuclear strategy in the face of possible conflicts

Russia has nuclear plans to stop an invasion of China

Global military institutions are tasked with the responsibility of anticipating and preparing for any possible scenario, no matter how unlikely it may appear. This is evident from historical records, which indicate that the United States had developed contingency plans for a hypothetical invasion of Canada until the late 20th century. Similarly, American decision-making during the naval conferences of the 1920s and 1930s took into account the possibility of conflicts with nations like Great Britain.

When planning for potential challenges, it’s important to be ready to handle any situation that may arise, without assuming that everyone involved will remain friendly or neutral. These particular documents were created between 2008 and 2014, but they reflect the Russian General Staff’s long-term thinking.

On the geopolitical stage, allies such as Turkey and China have been seen as strategic rivals in the past. Russia’s national security policy is based on Tsar Alexander III’s idea that the army and navy are Russia’s only reliable and permanent allies. This shows a belief that alliances are pragmatic and subject to change as national interests shift.

The dynamics of international alliances and Russia’s position

The founder of this magazine, Owen Harries, once said that the United States makes alliances based on easy-to-follow conditions, trusting that its allies won’t find a reason to oppose them. On the other hand, Russia sees any sign of weakness as an opportunity for its strategic partners to reconsider and possibly change their relationships to their advantage.

Russia has faced many challenges recently, including the deployment of resources in its “special military operation” in Ukraine, as well as the impact of Western sanctions. As a result, China and Turkey have both adjusted their terms of cooperation with Moscow, particularly in the economic sphere.

Turkey has become a pillar for Russia’s “Eurasian roundabout” plan, helping to lessen the impact of Western sanctions and rebalance power in the Caucasus and the Black Sea. Meanwhile, China has adjusted its trade terms to benefit itself, demanding that Russian natural resource transactions be conducted in renminbi currency and bargaining for additional discounts.

The question now is, what will the next scenario be as Russia’s power continues to decline? Twenty years ago, Rajan Menon proposed the idea of a “Reverse Manchuria,” suggesting that China might take de facto control over former Russian territories in Siberia and the Far East without formal annexation, reigniting fears in the Kremlin of a fragmented Russia under foreign control.

The possibility that these documents were intentionally leaked to send a message to China (and the United States) suggests a deterrence strategy on Russia’s part. The implicit reminder is that, despite its current vulnerabilities, Russia is willing to consider using nuclear weapons as a warning against exploiting its weaknesses.

This leak allows the Kremlin to maintain a formal distance from the documents, possibly dismissing them as obsolete while still getting its message across. China is reminded that any confrontation with Russia would have significant costs and that Beijing’s interests would be best served by maintaining cooperation within the current framework of the China-Russia relationship.

Despite the adverse circumstances, Russia points out that its deterrent power remains intact, although weakened.