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Russo-U.S. relations are in steady decline, and Russia’s next moves will determine whether the U.S.-led gasoline sanctions on Iran are a success or failure. Russia’s and China’s refusals to back America demonstrate the political independence and national self-determination of these rising nations. Their respect for the West is precipitously waning.
China is bolstered by its growing economic power. Russia is emboldened by its central role in energy politics.
Weighed down by internal and external strife and division, America is increasingly incapable of defending its position on the global stage, and the rise of Russia and China—as well as other powers—will increasingly marginalize the U.S.
Oil companies in China -- the second-biggest buyer of Iranian crude after Japan -- have stepped up investment. China National Petroleum Corp., the flagship state-owned oil company, has signed billion-dollar contracts to develop oil and natural-gas fields, replacing other foreign companies that have backed out. China's biggest oil refiner, state-owned Sinopec Group, has also signed on to develop Iranian oil fields.
Russia also benefits from the tense relationship between Tehran and the West: because of Western sanctions, Tehran cannot sell its gas to the lucrative European market. Instead, Russia and Gazprom remain Europe's dominant suppliers.
Were Iran to break out of its international isolation, either by abandoning its weapons program or undergoing regime change, European governments and energy companies would rush to complete deals that would reduce their dependence on Moscow. The consortium behind the planned Nabucco gas pipeline, which would bring 30 billion cubic meters (bcm) of gas a year to Europe while bypassing Russia, are already clamoring for permission to do a deal with Tehran. The Kremlin has little incentive to do anything that would undermine its ability to use gas supplies as leverage with their European customers.
Read more at: www.huffingtonpost.com...
MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia may face wars on its borders in the near future over control of energy resources, a Kremlin document on security policy said Wednesday.
The Kremlin has watched with displeasure as the European Union, the United States and China seek to challenge its dominance over energy supplies from the former Soviet Union.
The paper did not name potential adversaries, but Russia, the world's biggest energy producer, shares a border of more than 3,600 km (2,250 miles) with resource-hungry China and a small sea border with the United States.
"In a competition for resources, problems that involve the use of military force cannot be excluded that would destroy the balance of forces close to the borders of the Russian Federation and her allies," said the document, which maps out Russia's security strategy until 2020.