Manila Bulletin

Em­brac­ing Rus­sia’s pivot to Asia

- JOSE DE VENE­CIA JR. FOR­MER SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE Politics · Asian Politics · Russia · Russian Empire · Asia · Pacific Ocean · F.C. Internazionale Milano · Moscow · Iceland · Japan · South Korea · Taiwan · Beijing · Washington · United States of America · Soviet Union · Union · North Korea · United Nations · Barcelona · Spain · FC Barcelona · Germany · Deng Xiaoping · Karl Marx · Adam Smith · International Conference of Asian Political Parties · International Association · China · The Heritage Foundation

(Re­marks of for­mer speaker Jose de Vene­cia, found­ing chair­man of the In­ter­na­tional Con­fer­ence of Asian Po­lit­i­cal Par­ties (ICAPP), co-chair­man, In­ter­na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Par­lia­men­tar­i­ans for Peace (IAPP); and spe­cial en­voy of Pres­i­dent Duterte to the Asia Pa­cific Eco­nomic Co­op­er­a­tion (APEC) and for In­ter­cul­tural Di­a­logue at the In­ter­na­tional In­ter-Party Fo­rum, Moscow, Rus­sia, Oc­to­ber 22-23, 2020.)

Eco­nom­i­cally, Sakhalin Is­land’s LNG pro­duc­tion is cru­cial to Ja­pan, South Korea and even Tai­wan; be­tween them they con­sume three-fourths of the world’s LNG sup­ply. Mean­while, Moscow and Bei­jing must agree on a way of bene ting equally from their co­op­er­a­tive ex­ploita­tion of the Rus­sian Far East’s wealth of re­sources.

Po­lit­i­cally, Rus­sia’s lead­er­ship par­tic­i­pa­tion will be vi­tal to a res­o­lu­tion of the is­sue of nu­clear pro­lif­er­a­tion and Korean uni cation; and even to the mul­ti­lat­eral set­tle­ment of Amer­i­can-Chi­nese dif­fer­ences in the China Sea.

Most prac­ti­cal so­lu­tion in South China Sea cri­sis

On the rag­ing con ict­ing claims in the South China Sea, we have re­peat­edly pointed out that there is the po­ten­tial for a peace­ful set­tle­ment. That is to tem­po­rar­ily shelve the is­sue of sovereignt­y to pave the way for joint ex­plo­ration and joint devel­op­ment of the dis­puted area’s re­sources.

From an area of con ict, it could be trans­formed into a land­scape and seascape of small sea­ports, air­ports, and oil pipe­lines. Fish­ing vil­lages and small tourism town­ships could rapidly rise and the con­tested ar­eas could be­come the un­tram­melled pas­sage way for global ship­ping, car­ry­ing more than 50 per­cent of the sea fright of the world.

The idea of “win-win co­op­er­a­tion,” of a prag­matic shar­ing of re­sources could help build a model for less­en­ing ten­sions and solv­ing con

icts, and avoid­ing the pos­si­bil­ity of war in Asia’s man­i­fold and dan­ger­ous ash­points.

Be­tween Moscow and Wash­ing­ton, be­tween Wash­ing­ton and Bei­jing, and be­tween Moscow and the Euro­pean pow­ers, mu­tual ac­com­mo­da­tion must be found that gives the par­ties strate­gic re­as­sur­ance and re­spect for their core in­ter­ests.

Iron­i­cally, the hard-won peace be­tween the ear­lier Cold War prin­ci­pals — the United States and the for­mer Soviet Union — has en­abled the smaller coun­tries to en­joy well over a gen­er­a­tion of po­lit­i­cal sta­bil­ity and eco­nomic growth.

We de­clare we want no new Cold War in the Asia Paci c. Nor do we wish any state in our Asian re­gion or in any other re­gion to play ei­ther the “Amer­i­can Card” or the “China Card” or the

“Rus­sian

Card.”

On the

Korean penin­sula, an­other ma­jor ash­point, we also ask for the re­vival of the long stale­mated Six-Na­tion Talks among South Korea, North Korea, the US, Ja­pan, China, and Rus­sia to con­sider re­uni cation of the two Koreas, which is a most dif­fi­cult but not an im­pos­si­ble task.

Best el­e­ments of cap­i­tal­ism

and so­cial­ism

In the bat­tle against poverty, may we nd a way per­haps of tem­per­ing the in­di­vid­ual ini­tia­tive that cap­i­tal­ism stim­u­lates with so­cial­ism’s com­pas­sion for those whom devel­op­ment leaves be­hind.

We had much ear­lier sug­gested in ad­dress­ing the Her­itage Foun­da­tion in Wash­ing­ton, DC, and later, the United Na­tions Univer­sity in Barcelona, Spain, and var­i­ous other in­ter­na­tional con­fer­ences, that there might be merit in bring­ing to­gether the best el­e­ments of both cap­i­tal­ism and so­cial­ism in a new ap­plied art of gov­er­nance — based on what works best for a par­tic­u­lar so­ci­ety over a speci c his­tor­i­cal pe­riod, con­sid­er­ing the per­sis­tent and in­cred­i­bly huge gaps be­tween rich and poor in our time.

The con­cept could also in­te­grate the ner fea­tures of Ger­many’s “so­cial mar­ket” econ­omy and should per­haps op­er­ate un­der the aegis of a lib­eral con­sti­tu­tional democ­racy com­mit­ted to free elec­tions, free mar­kets, and a free me­dia.

In China, then paramount leader Deng Xiaop­ing, hero of China’s suc­cess­ful mod­ern­iza­tion and open­ing to the world, ad­vo­cated — in fact, started off — a Chi­nese eco­nomic sys­tem nei­ther Marx­ian so­cial­ism nor Adam Smith-type cap­i­tal­ism, but some­thing in be­tween or what has been called “so­cial­ism with Chi­nese char­ac­ter­is­tics” or “Con­fu­cian syn­er­gism,” which has worked ex­ceed­ingly well for China, lift­ing it to the sec­ond largest eco­nomic power in the world, next only to the United States.

The ul­ti­mate task for our states­men must be to re­place the Pax Amer­i­cana that has en­forced sta­bil­ity on our re­gion dur­ing this last half­cen­tury with a Pax Paci ca founded on the bal­ance of mu­tual bene t; and freely sub­scribed to by all the pow­ers with vi­tal in­ter­ests in the re­gion. Af­ter all, the US is and will al­ways be a Paci c power.

In all of these ur­gent tasks, the lead­er­ship and par­tic­i­pa­tion of the new Rus­sia and the great Rus­sian peo­ple will be cru­cial.

Like the dou­ble-headed ea­gle on its his­toric coat of arms, the new Rus­sia looks both West and East. And Moscow’s east­ward turn, we wel­come most heartily, in Asia.

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