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China-Russia's Relationship Health in Question; Leaked Documents Reveal China's 220,000 Spies
The relationship between Russia and China shifted after the Cold War. China, which had been formed under Soviet influence, now plays the dominant role, while Russia and its many leaders who starkly remember the old days, now play the subordinate role. But as Chinese authorities faces internal and external crisis, and as the regime becomes more aggressive on the world stage, how long will this relationship last? In 2008 when both countries saw the US financial crisis, China had determined the decline of the United States had begun, and that it could abandon its narrative of a “peaceful rise.” Soon after, China began its aggressive takeover of the South China Sea and the East China Sea. Russia made a similar move around that time as well, when at the Munich Security Conference in 2007, Russia also set out on a new push to assert its claims over post-Soviet regions, which included Georgia and Ukraine. And in other news, leaked documents from China show how authorities use students in the Belt and Road Initiative and for civil diplomacy. The program uses overseas students and manages the associations under its United Front Work Department, through the Central Committee. The association allegedly has 42 local organizations and 220,000 members. These stories and more in this episode of Crossroads.