The tigress mother squints her eyes and almost smiles at her cubs

The tigress mother squints her eyes and almost smiles at her cubs

Dmitry Kosyrev

A large part of humanity celebrated the Chinese New Year and welcomed the coming of the Year of the Tiger. And, in fact, what is he, this very tiger? And this is where disputes and squabbles come to light, including – and especially – within Chinese society. Disputes are not even political, but almost ideological in nature.
It is known that during live communication people most often behave decently, but noticeably go berserk on the Internet. And in the Chinese segment of this, a group of brawlers started a squabble on the topic “the tiger is not real.” We are talking about a special issue of postage stamps for today’s date, February 1. “What is it?” the brawlers were outraged. On one stamp, a male tiger looks thoughtfully into the distance. On the other, the lyrics were completely diluted: the tigress mother squints her eyes and almost smiles at her cubs.
“And where is the strength and energy that this predator is supposed to be capable of expelling evil?” Internet patriots ask. “Where is the king of beasts, whom everyone is afraid of?” Not to mention the fact that tiger cubs are somehow pessimistic.
It is clear what we are talking about. There is an old story here about immoderate patriots in this country who are in a permanent rage, if only about literally everyday sanctions threats from the United States (and some threats are being carried out). And for such people, the symbol, if not of their country, then at least of the beginning of the year, should inspire fear in everyone. True, there are many hundreds of millions of their compatriots who believe that these images should perhaps reflect “the determination of the Chinese people to be competitive and brave in the coming year”, but at the same time they must symbolize generosity and the desire to help others. In general, the debate turned out to be a long one.
But it is clear that a postage stamp is not some standard that someone should follow. There is no standard for tigers in China, but there are literally millions of images of a wide variety of striped animals, from which ripples in the eyes. And what do you want, if in the village of Vangun in the center of the country alone, local nine hundred craftsmen painted 90 thousand of any kind of scrolls last year, and by the end of the year they were only engaged in tigers, evil and good. The village is a phenomenon, it is difficult to understand why it was she who suddenly began to earn money almost exclusively by painting, but who would mind.
As for the teeth: we can recall the popular discussion in the Soviet 60s about whether kindness should be with fists. If we talk about entire nations, then any nation wants to be feared, respected, and loved at the same time. Or, let’s say, good people loved and bad people feared. But the Chinese nation is a special case, if only because it is in the year of the Tiger that it will have to achieve nuclear and other military parity with the country where it is officially called its main competitor – the United States.
True, we are not talking about this year of the Tiger, but the next one, which will come through the zodiac cycle, that is, in 12 years.
Where does the parity data come from: The Yevgeny Primakov Institute of World Economy and International Relations has just released a huge book. The first part of it is a translation of the annual report of SIPRI (Stockholm Institute for Peace), perhaps the most authoritative source on the planet in terms of the military potentials of everyone and everyone. And the second part is the publications of Russian experts on the same topic. In this case, we are talking about the analysis of Chinese military power – the authorship of Vasily Kashin and Alexander Lukin, where there is a lot of added value to the yearbook and its data.
Among other things, it says: if China now has perhaps 320 nuclear warheads, then by 2035 (almost exactly by the next Tiger) there may be 1200-1300 of them, which is comparable to the arsenals of Russia and the United States (about one and a half thousand each). But it’s not just about the pieces, there’s also China’s missile programs – or the fact that up to 40 percent of China’s military spending goes to the development of any kind of new technology.
Meanwhile, even today, China’s Armed Forces are more maritime than land forces (the latter are being systematically reduced). Now the Chinese Navy is the largest fleet on the planet in terms of the total number of warships and the second in the world in terms of large combat units of the main classes (destroyers, frigates, aircraft carriers). In addition, it is twice the size of the US Navy in ter-ms of the tonnage of warships commissioned annually. As a result, America l-oses the ability to resist C-hina, at least in the western part of the Pacific Ocean.
Everything that is happening in international politics at the moment revolves around this reality: that plus or minus after the onset of the next year of the Tiger, the United States will have a chance for only one sphere of influence – in the Pacific Ocean, and then to maintain it, all available resources will have to be spent. Other American spheres of influence will shrink and shrink. Yes, yes, in Europe too. Actually, everything that is happening now – this white noise and white screeching around Ukraine and about the fact that Russia should not be given any spheres of influence – is a cover for the cruel reality that China alone is enough for the United States to desperately fight to maintain key positions in the world. And the burden in the form of NATOand other European affairs must somehow be neutralized, either by agreeing with Russia, or by drawing it into petty European squabbles for a long time, or both at the same time.
And about the current, coming tiger year. We will follow the celebrations on February 4, when the Olympic Games open in Beijing and Vladimir Putin arrives there. Diplomats promise us a lot of interesting things as a result of this trip. But today it can be noted that the trade turnover between our two countries grew by 35 percent over the past year, exceeding the pre-pandemic level of 2019 and reaching $147 billion. China has long been our first trading partner. Note that the share of oil and gas in Russian exports there has shrunk to a third. In general, one must be able to choose friends, although sometimes they are simply lucky with them – they suddenly turn out to be even stronger than they thought at first.
As for our tigers from postage stamps, it is clear that their teeth are in perfect order. And with such teeth, you can afford to look thoughtfully into the distance, and gently squint, looking at the cubs.

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