Overall evaluations, worldwide and regions
Historical overview – navalism
One of the America’s greatest military strategists, Alfred Thayer Mahan, in his book The Influence of Sea Power upon History about a hundred years ago, saw the value of world oceans and activity there as the foundation for national greatness and power. The pivot of this greatness was a powerful navy. The theory of Navalism reached the US administration later in the 19th century and all other major powers at that time, Great Britain, Japan, Germany, Russia.
As a central postulate of Navalism – large, expensive fleets became the main force which embodied both national prestige and safety for the trade of the nation which possessed them. The era of battleships and cruisers was followed by the era of submarines. The doctrine of the Shipping Lanes of Communications (SLOC) and maritime Choke Points became defined factors in Western strategic thinking of the 20th Century during WW I and especially so during WW II.
In the post WW II, US Navy became more than just a concentrated material expression of American national pride and of industrial-technological prowess; it became the guarantor of the safety of those numerous SLOCs and Choke Points on which American prosperity depended then and continues to depend even more so today.
When entering the 21st century, with the collapse of the Soviet Union, the US Navy lost its only modern peer the Soviet Navy. Up to now, the US Navy has reigned supreme over the vast spaces of the world oceans, thus controlling the world’s maritime trade which amounts to almost 90 percent of all global trade.
It seems that the United States with her massive navy is a living proof of the old geopolitical truism that the one who controls the world oceans controls the world’s trade and thus controls the world.
New time – new isms
The changes in the international trade patterns, China’s growing industrial capacity and trade volumes have created a new situation. Trade deficit between China and the US formally caused a trade war condition between the countries but a much larger global scenario began to emerge since 2013 and it is China’s Belt and Road initiative (BRI), the New Silk Road.
Later in 2017-2018, in Chinese-Russian high-level talks, the Chinese BRI and Russia’s EAEU were “combined by the aims as a Great Eurasian Partnership”. China-Russia’s long-term purpose seems to create a huge uniform commercial and societal continent from Pacific to Atlantic covering Asia-Pacific, Eurasia, Middle East and Europe (the whole Europe not just EU), bypassing the interests of the US.
The position of the US in this context is following
- huge trade deficits not only with China but with several European countries as well
- threatening with numerous sanctions, tariff ups and other punitive measures
- exercises hard pressing on European energy arrangement with Russia (NordStream, TurkStream)
- has expressed aggressive attitude towards Chinese BRI over the world, seeing it threatens her national interests
- interests of the US are well known in the Central Asia by the famous American political scientist Zbigniew Brzezinsky
With China securing the safety of her strategic rear and crucial resources by entering into military-political partnership with Russia, China seems poised to complete the BRI’s land-bridge, a part of which will go through Russia.
Modern transportation technologies, including high-speed rail – the exact field in which China is one of the global leaders – may significantly change the matrix of goods’ flow and interconnect Eurasia with a highly developed railroad network, which work is already in progress. However, commercial marine transport still remains the most efficient way of delivering large quantities of goods. China needs these “maritime roads” which connect her ports with the Mediterranean and this is here the “check point of reality” regarding Chinese BRI.
Sino-Russian naval partnership vs. the US Navy
In the Western recent discourse there has been much talk about the Russia-Chinese alliance, as well as about Russia being a junior partner in such an alliance. All this is a result of not seeing by Western analysts the real factors behind the BRI & Great Eurasian Partnership and on the other hand in the partnership between China and Russia.
The US Navy the most powerful naval force in history
One of the major reasons is the fact that the US Navy and the Chinese Navy (PLAN) are simply in different leagues. Although the US Navy has nowadays its weaknesses and deficiencies but there can be no denial that the US Navy still remains the most powerful naval force in history.
It is precisely this force which can stop any maritime trade in almost any part of the world. The “almost” qualifier is extremely important here.
The Chinese Navy (PLAN) has been in construction overdrive for a decade now and it has built a large number of surface combat ships. By 2030 it plans to have four aircraft carriers in its order of battle. China is also building more offshore naval bases (besides the present in Djibouti, one in Pakistan).
But the question remains, will the Chinese Navy (PLAN) be able to defend its SLOCs from the interventions by the US Navy? The answer today is an unequivocal NO. China may already have a very serious A2/AD (Anti-Access/Area Denial) costal capability which would deter the US Navy and make its life difficult in the South China Sea but blue water operations are a completely different game.
The US Navy today and in the next five years future has an ace up its sleeve and that is a massive nuclear attack submarine force which, considering the US Navy’s powerful surface element, will not allow PLAN to defend its SLOCs. The PLAN is not able to face such odds, especially when one considers the rather unimpressive technological reality of PLAN’s submarine force—this inferiority in technology and numbers will not be overcome any time soon. In the open ocean the US Navy can and will sink the Chinese Navy and that will mean the end of the Road, leaving only the Belt to China.
However, here is that point where Russia has her own strategic ace to serve.
The present Russian Navy and especially the modernized strategic offensive nuclear submarines and new hypersonic weapons form such a valuable military asset in balancing threat that combined capability and capacity of Chinese-Russian naval force form a peer competitor to the US Navy.
This fact is obviously noticed also in Pentagon, because so much worried announcements have been stated in last few years by American high-rank officers.
The Russian-Chinese military alliance-like partnership today seems unshakable and it will remain so for the time being but, contrary to Western analyses, this is not because just Russia needs China – certainly no more than China needs Russia.
It is a situational, global alliance-like partnership but it is also the economically natural alliance of two very close neighbors. China needs Russia’s resources and energy, which Russia sells in huge quantities to China but China needs Russia’s military technology as well. While it is primarily Russia-derived military technology which has already used in Chinese and Russian littorals and their near sea zones and air space against foreign threat, Russia may hold yet another joker.
The Northern Sea Route – an Arctic Silk Road
It is the Northern Sea Route, which China supports strongly with sound reasons. Unlike the Indian Ocean where PLAN would have to face the powerful US Navy, Russia controls the Arctic and possesses a world-class A2/AD and other military capability there, from advanced nuclear submarines, patrol and missile carrying aviation to a system of surveillance and reconnaissance sensors and coastal weapons, which make this route a desirable trade route, also being much shorter than other maritime routes.
The pace of Russian construction of ice-breakers for year-round operation of this ice route, now greatly mitigated by climate change, testifies to the fact that this route is already becoming an important economic and geopolitical factor. The strategic implications are significant – neither the US Navy, nor any other navy, would be able to interdict Arctic SLOCs.
Russia already has enough fire-power in the Arctic to ensure that passage is possible under any geopolitical conditions, while retaining the capacity to shut it down. China has no such capabilities. As The Diplomat magazine noted “as long as solid Russia-China relations exist, the future of the Ice Silk Road is bright.”
Sino-Russian partnership, a geopolitical factor
As Russia’s relations with Western countries gradually deteriorated over the course of the post-Cold War period, the Eurasian vector in Russian foreign policy has increased in importance, rising to the point where it now supplies one of the guiding paradigms of the country’s international vision, the Greater Eurasian Partnership.
This is Russia’s vision of a more pluralistic and polycentric world, transforming the world’s normative landscape and potentially reconfiguring the global geopolitical chessboard. Moscow’s “Pivot to the East” (Putin’s Edicts 2012) was designed, in part, to support the foundations of Russia’s independent great power status and strengthen the Kremlin’s hand toward Europe by deepening ties with dynamic Asian markets.
It seems now obvious that West pushes Russia and China closer together. With Beijing celebrating the 70th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party’s rule in late 2019, there’s been a heated discussion across the Western world about the role that China is going to play in the global affairs. In the discussion, it has been noticed the growing military cooperation between Beijing and Moscow but the relationship between countries has been described as a marriage of convenience with limited impact on American interests.
But when Western nations have imposed more sanctions on both countries since 2014, Chinese and Russian authorities have increasingly found common cause to offer themselves as alternatives to America’s post-war leadership.
Large-scale cooperation between China and Russia has become a major geopolitical factor. As China and Russia are growing even closer, it becomes evident that this new arrangement is going to present a challenge to Washington’s dominance on the geopolitical stage.
Deeper military cooperation between China-Russia
The present close ties between Russia and China go back to early 1990s but those countries re-updated a full-fledged military cooperation pact in 2018. Among the reasons behind this rapprochement one can name the omnipresent external threat to the very existence of those states, as the West has done nearly-all-possible to undermine Russia and China both internally and externally.
Moscow and Beijing are coordinating their goals, military planning and production capabilities and they have been doing this since the early 2000s. However, the turning point in the bilateral military relations between Russia and China can be traced to a major spike in anti-Russian sanctions that occurred in 2017.
Against this backdrop, Moscow proposed that a comprehensive roadmap should have been developed, covering the time span of three years and encompassing all the areas of military cooperation between the states. China was ready to accept this proposition largely to the fact that it was facing the prospect of a full-blown trade war with the United States that was later launched by the Trump administration.
With Beijing being yet unable to reach nuclear parity with the United States, it gravitates closer to Moscow and its massive nuclear stockpiles. In 2019, China’s Defense White Paper states that the cooperation between the states remains on a particularly high level, with a special emphasis being laid on the fact that it will not threat any third party, unless the latter decides to attack any of the two states.
The intention of pursuing further rapprochement can be observed in the way Xi Jinping’s visit to Russia was carried out in June 2019. In particular, he signed a number of military deals with his Russian counterpart, with the parties pledging their commitments to pursue the goal of preserving security, addressing threats and creating favorable conditions for further rapprochement. The scale of this cooperation covers large-scale arms sales, joint military exercises, voting alike in the United Nations and having similar positions on Iran and North Korea. Both have become much more active in the Middle East, where Russia is regaining its standing as a major power and China is trying to cultivate relations with energy suppliers like Iran and Iraq.
When the two countries (China, Russia) integrate their early warning systems into one joint system, it will constitute a major shift in the existing balance of powers.
Moscow’s growing mutual trust with China is capable of redrawing the entire geopolitical layout in the world. Just recently, Vladimir Putin would announce Russia’s intention to help Beijing build a strategic missile early warning system. To the present day, Russia and the United States have been the only ones to possess such capabilities. It has been noted that the system will allow the two countries to warn each other of launches carried out by a third-country. According to Russia’s leader such a development will result in a quantitative change in Beijing’s ability to ensure its security.
As the US-Russia relations carry on deteriorating it is hard to imagine any other development than Moscow and Beijing formally recognizing their status of close military allies.
Recently, the former Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Newt Gingric revealed that this activity creates a real potential for a China-Russia strategic alliance which would turn much of Western national security planning and strategy upside-down.
Although the US remains the paramount military power, its ineptitude has resulted in Russia and China joint development surpassing the US in many critical areas (hypersonics, EW, ASAT) so that the US has found limited capability of defending itself against a nuclear second strike.
If the US could deliver a nuclear first strike without having to worry about a retaliatory second strike thanks to its ABM systems, then its quest for perpetual unipolarity could possibly be realistic. But Washington’s peer competitors have shown that they have the means to defend themselves against a nuclear first strike by being able to deliver a massive second strike, thereby communicating that the doctrine of mutually assured destruction (MAD) is here to stay.
Measures and counter-measures in the triangle game
Now, in 2019, even though the number of nuclear weapons is four times lower than in the early 1980s, the likelihood of some form of nuclear catastrophe has arguably risen to an unprecedented level. The new risks today are manifold. Many basic political and military communication channels that the US and Russia had used for decades to avoid misperception and share information have been suspended.
Arms control treaties are now collapsing at a time when both parties are facing with serious challenges to strategic stability from non-nuclear high-precision weapons, hypersonic weapons, advanced cyberwarfare, unmanned and robotic systems, space weapons, third countries’ nuclear arsenals, vulnerabilities in command and control, terrorist hacking etc. The opportunities for nuclear risk reduction today seem to be far apart. President Donald Trump has threatened to “outspend and out-innovate” any competitor in an arms race.
China and Russia have organized extensive international cooperation networks worldwide, thus trying to contain and reduce the US influence in world affairs. This work seems to be achieved some apparent results in Eurasia, Middle East and Africa.
Simultaneously, the US is persistently trying to mobilize all its foreign partners to contain Russia and China. It does not conceal the desire to sow discord between Moscow and Beijing and undermine multilateral alliances and regional integration projects in Eurasia and Asia-Pacific that are being implemented without its oversight.
On the other hand, it seems that the more aggressive the US foreign policy becomes, the more it reveals its tactical and strategic limits, which in turn only serves to accelerate its loss of hegemony.
The actions of US Presidents George W. Bush, Obama and Trump have served to accelerate the world’s transition away from a unipolar world to a multipolar direction or to something else. As Trump follows in the steps of his predecessors by being overaggressive towards nearly all countries, he only serves to weaken the US global position and strengthen that of his opponents.
At the end of the nineteenth century, a British Lord Palmerston stated that
“England has no eternal friends, England has no perpetual enemies, England has only eternal and perpetual interests.”
Palmerston was saying that national interests should drive the relationships with foreigners. A nation will have amicable relations most of the time with some countries and difficult relations with some others but the bottom line should always be what is beneficial for one’s own country and people.
If Palmerston were alive today and observing the relationship of the United States of America with the rest of the world, he might well find Washington to be an exception to his rule. Sanctioning the majority of the humanity, the US has been adept at turning adversaries into enemies and disappointing friends and by belief that doing so will somehow bring democracy and freedom to all.
Europe and great powers
The EU has not been in the analyses of this website. The disintegration trends and fragmentation among EU-family are strong and growing so that it is very difficult to see any “great power role” played by EU in the short or mid-term (Covid-19, Union’s economic, financial and structural problems, Brexit, domestic turmoils in France, Spain, Greece, Italy, political disputes with Poland, Hungary, domestic political disputes in Germany, refugee and migration problems, populist and separatist movements etc.).
Besides, the EU lacks of the European independent military force. So far, the majority of EU members have been in the structure of NATO, which is fully led by the US military leadership and fully dependent on the US military force. NATO’s European military forces are primarily in a servant-relation to the US masters, perhaps except the British armed force, which partly holds its own independent capability to project power offshore as well as in some extent with France’s military force. All others European national military forces are more servants to their master. The present Turkey, under presidency of Erdogan, is a very exceptional and particular case, on its own.
While the US and EU officials continue to claim that the US-Europe alliance /trans-Atlantic relations are functioning as usual, the fact is that the post-World War II arrangement is slowly falling apart. This was pretty obvious at the latest Munich security conference in early 2020.
The US officials have been warning the EU on “too close relations” with China and Russia, in other words the division rests significantly on how the EU should handle China and Russia. “We cannot be the United States’ ‘junior partner,” said Macron, citing recent failures in the West’s policy of defiance. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas echoed the sentiment, warning that China and Russia were ascendant in a new world order where the United States is taking a more confrontational role.
Ukrainian crisis is today the only European open armed conflict case and taking into account the domestic difficulties and deteriorating situation in Ukraine as well as the uncertain EU position, the case will be open and unsettled for far in the future.
Asia – Pacific area
The two worst discomfort points in China – the US relationship are Taiwan and South China Sea, where strategic military analysts worldwide have made various scenarios for future incidents and even war potential. Both cases are especially sensitive and essential to China and geopolitically vital near-regions as well but not vitally important to the US. However, the US resumes the arms sales to Taiwan and supports its military preparedness and maintains “freedom of navigation” in South China Sea and Taiwan Straits for political reasons. The trade war situation between these countries will continue quite far in the future due to many fundamental “competition factors” in their bilateral relations.
South China Sea – what for to dispute – in nut shell
- Sovereignty over two largely uninhabited island chains, the Paracels and the Spratlys, is disputed by China, Vietnam, the Philippines, Taiwan and Malaysia
- China claims the largest portion of territory, saying its rights go back centuries – in 1947 it issued a map detailing its claims
- Nowadays main disputes between China and the US with “freedom of navigation”
- The area is a major shipping route, a rich fishing ground and is thought to have abundant oil and gas reserves as well as valuable minerals
In early 2020, The United States announced intentions to deploy new units of ground forces on the Pacific Islands to level out the capabilities of the armies of Russia and China. According to Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy, special units of the US Army deployed on the islands east off Taiwan and the Philippines will conduct cyberattacks, information warfare and use hypersonic and other high-precision weapons against naval and ground targets to clear the way for the US Navy and Air Force in the event of conflict. China earlier warned of a possibility to use anti-ship missiles if US carrier groups crossed the first and the second chain of islands stretching to Guam, Kalimantan and New Guinea. Yet, McCarthy believes, the appearance of new American units on those islands will change the balance of power, because new units of the ground forces would “punch a hole” in China’s defenses.
McCarthy’s recent statements come in line with the plans of the Pentagon chief Mark Esper to redeploy forces to the Pacific Ocean from Europe, Africa and the Middle East to strengthen the US military capabilities in confrontation with China and Russia. In October of 2019, it became known that Washington was conducting negotiations with Tokyo about the deployment of new medium-range missiles in Japan.
North Korea resumes missile tests and this problem case will be open at least till the date when new American President starts in early 2021. The détente between North and South Korea is moved again far to the future. The Philippines, the long-term loyal US partner, is making distance with the US, in the middle of growing discomfort between the presidents of the countries. Japan is also “leach-slipping” with the US and aiming at greater military force in the region, while Abe’s government is trying to change the status and paragraphs of the defense forces in the Japanese constitution.
Japanese-Russian peace negotiations regarding Kurils have been failed so far but the bilateral trade is booming. Sino-Japanese relations are still stressed with the hard history but the trade and economic relations are booming. However, China, Japan and South Korea have now strengthening mutual relations in trilateral summit in late 2019, by which China is aiming at closer bonds weaken influence of Washington in Northeast Asia.
The relationship of old allies, the US and South Korea, got an extra stress in late 2019 when negotiations between the US and South Korea on cost-sharing of the US military presence ended in failure and there were no more talks scheduled before the existing deal expires on December 31. President Trump’s last-minute demands for a massive increase turned be a huge mistake, as South Korea was already paying more than most nations do for US troops, and had agreed to a more modest increase. Getting from $800 million per year to around $1 billion per year was one thing, but Trump’s demand for $5 billion per year angered many in South Korea. The final settlement is still open.
India is trying to maintain neutrality and good relations both with the US and Russia, Prime Minister Modi trying to balance with conflicting interests. Relations with China are slowly becoming more pragmatic and businesslike. Russia has been active in Asia during last five years. President Putin had a large Asian tour in 2018 indicating that Russian pivot has moved to Asia.
Central Asia, “Chinese Juggernaut”, BRI and “Russian Grandeur”, Greater Eurasian Partnership
China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is the largest undertaking in the country’s modern history connecting 65 countries and costing worth of over $1 trillion. First proposed by President Xi Jinping in 2013, the initiative would develop and construct a vast network of railroads and shipping lanes between China and 65 countries in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Europe.
Both Iran and Russia are fighting US sanctions. Despite historical frictions, Iran and Russia are getting closer in their business and political relations. Tehran provides crucial strategic depth to Moscow’s Southwest Asia presence and Moscow unequivocally supports the JCPOA. Iran will become a formal member of the Russia-led Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU) before the end of 2019 and with solid Russian backing Iran will be accepted as a full member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) by 2019.
Two great initiatives, China’s BRI and Russia’s Great Eurasian Partnership are “walking hand in hand” in Central Asian Region, covering step-by-step more countries and regions and including more economic and political activities. The pairing of the Chinese Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and Russia’s supported Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) in recent years has turned into an important part of the whole complex of Russia-China interaction.
Both Presidents Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin have openly discussed the possibility of uniting Eurasia and developing something wholly new entity, known as the Great Eurasian Partnership. This concept brings together the members of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), and ASEAN as a huge economic bloc where China and Russia may play as leading powers in geopolitical and military matters as well.
Prominent American foreign policy expert and decision maker, Zbigniew Brzezinski, said that having lost the competition in Central Asia, means losing the competition of world power. Now it seems that such a destiny is facing the US. China and Russia are playing skillfully together realizing their common interests in the region. The future great power quadrate in Eurasia: Russia – India – China – Pakistan, all nuclear powers have already entered in multidimensional and complex cooperative network and the US is slowly pushed aside.
Russia-China strategic partnership is the backbone of all this Eurasian process. Beijing defines it as rolling towards a “new era” that implies strategic long-term planning with the key date being 2050, the centennial of New China. Beijing expects to have fully woven a new, multipolar paradigm of sovereign nations/partners across Eurasia and beyond.
China’s assessment is that the result seems to be that after five centuries of Western domination which, incidentally, led to the decline of the Ancient Silk Roads – “the Heartland is back with a bang”, asserting its preeminence.
This Sino-Russian apparatus proceeds smoothly in complex geopolitical issues over the whole Eurasian chessboard covering MENA region as well. In summer2019, Iran-Iraq-Syria trilaterally established discussions of transport corridor and gas pipeline as part of a wider plan for reviving the new Silk Road where Iran is a key node of BRI. China will be heavily involved in the rebuilding of Syria and Beijing-Baghdad signed multiple deals, especially major oil deal and set up an Iraqi-Chinese Reconstruction Fund.
What is ultimately at stake is a massive geo-economic prize: “geo-economic and geopolitical highway” from the Eastern Mediterranean Latakia/Syria, via Iraq – Iran- Central Asia-China connection, taking along Pakistan and India, all the way to the Pacific.
A quick look at the map reveals the “secret” of the US refusing to pack up and leave Iraq, as demanded by the Iraqi Parliament and Prime Minister, to prevent the emergence of this highway by any means necessary. This explains also the US staying in Syria and in Afghanistan as well as the recent US efforts to deepen cooperation with India. The Russia-China-Iran joint naval exercise in late December 2019 can be seen now in this light.
A devastating investigative report was published in the Washington Post on December 9th 2019. Dubbed the “Afghanistan Papers” the report relied on thousands of documents to similarly expose how the US government at the presidential level across three administrations, acting in collaboration with the military brass and civilian bureaucracy, deliberately and systematically lied repeatedly to the public and media about the situation in Afghanistan. Officials from the Bush, Obama and Trump administrations have all surged additional troops into Afghanistan while also regularly overstating the “success” that the US was attaining in stabilizing and democratizing the country. While they were lying, the senior officers and government officials understood clearly that the war was, in fact, unwinnable. The story should have been featured all across the US but the mainstream media was largely unresponsive, preferring to cover the impeachment saga.
The MENA region
Political tectonics are now moving fast in the Middle East and North Africa. The assassination of Iranian General Soleimani, in January 2020, upon the order of the President of the United States on the territory of another sovereign state once again undermined the legal foundations of the entire system of international relations. It is very clear that the situation in the Middle East and the Persian Gulf has become even more tense and unpredictable.
The oil industry sources state that Russia and China are quietly preparing the ground to relaunch the Iran-Iraq-Syria gas pipeline from Iran’s huge Persian Gulf South Pars gas field it shares with Qatar. A US-backed proxy war began against Syria’s Bashar al-Assad in 2011 just after he signed a deal with Iran and Iraq to build the pipeline, rejecting an earlier Qatar proposal for an alternative route. Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar poured billions of covert funds to finance different militia groups such in a vain effort to topple Assad.
Beijing is looking at its prospects, along with Russia to replace the domination of Iraqi politics that Washington has held since its 2003 war. In October 2019, just after Prime Minister Abdul-Mahdi’s successful Beijing talks, Iraq started exporting 100,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude oil to China as part of the 20-year oil-for-infrastructure deal agreed between the two countries. This Iraq-China oil deal has caused a deteriorating dispute between Iraq and the US.
New cooperative constellations are emerging around two leading opponents Iran – Saudi Arabia, where Russia is supporting Iran and the US supporting SA, all other Arabic countries and Israel are looking and seeking their positions in the new setting. Iran has managed to develop domestically (and with Russian technical support) a powerful missile offensive and defensive capacity and capability as well as a capable navy, which have enabled to Iran a robust military position in the region.
Russia’s role in the Middle East has strengthened significantly during last five years, partly due to Russia’s decisive role in Syrian war, partly skillful and capable relations policy and robust management in energy sector. So far, China has kept lower profile but is looking carefully at opening possibilities, especially in the context of BRI. The joint naval tripartite drills of Iran, Russia and China in December 2019 in Persian Gulf, is an interesting indication of new political-military change both in the regional power balance and in the great power triangle game. The position of the US has become a target of increasing counter-acts by various actors and the US influence has been declining both politically and militarily in the whole area.
More new and dangerous dimensions have emerged in Libya’s collapsed state case, where “new Ottoman” Turkey and new coalition players are taking shape: Russia, Egypt, Libya’s LNA (marshal Haftar) and others.
In addition to this, oil and natural gas deposits in Eastern Mediterranian area will make the situation even more complex.
More analyses on this topic in coming blogs.