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Russia is a larger security threat to the U.S and allies than China

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/17/2015 Category: Politics
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 322 times Debate No: 71894
Debate Rounds (3)
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With growing tensions between the U.S and Russia one can assume that Russia is increasingly a major security threat to the United States. While I do not deny this sentiment, it is paramount for onlookers to realize the dangers imposed by China and how those dangers are greater than those brought forth by Russia. To begin we should look first at the military threats that each nation poses. Russia, with a large cold-war era military is widely considered the U.S' only substantial opponent on the battlefield, this however still does not pose much of a domestic threat to the U.S. The U.S has increasingly invested in national defense and the military since the outbreak of the cold war. Russia has the second largest nuclear arsenal after the U.S but lacks the satellite intelligence and anti-missile technology that the U.S is thought to poses. This coupled with the U.S' large economic and political advantages over Russia make Russia a regional threat to U.S interests in Europe, the Middle East, and Central Asia. China similarly to Russia possesses a out-dated and under funded military that poses little threat to the U.S mainland. However China has increasingly invested in areas of the world left abandoned by the U.S and Russia after the end of the cold war; areas such as South America, South East Asia, and Africa. These connections are making China an increasingly powerful global power with reach that extends to multiple continents and far from it's national borders. Further, unlike Russia, China holds economic power that it has used to make significant technological advances in its military complex; including the building of a new Aircraft carrier, and the upgrading of fighter aircraft into the 21st century.

While both China and Russia have made aggressive moves against their neighbors Russia has shown a willingness to act against neighbors with military power; I cite Ukraine and Georgia. This however does not pose a risk to the U.S or allies directly as Russia has yet to move against a NATO or EU member. China however has made smaller land and territorial grabs at direct U.S allies such as Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan. Those signaling that China has no fear of angering the U.S in the Pacific.

Further, China has technological abilities that have called into question the U.S' ability to defend against a cyber attack. This fact only makes China a potentially deadly adversary. Their ability to successfully wage a cyber war, potentially could shut down power grids, water purification sites, or defense capabilities in the face of impending natural disaster, or invasion. In today's world of ever expanding inter-connectivity China's ability to disrupt and dismantle the U.S' cyber infrastructure is a threat exceeding that of the nuclear ICBMs of the cold war. Imagine for a moment a Category 5 hurricane is heading directly for the gulf coast, the Department of Homeland Security has dispatched FEMA and the national guard prematurely to prepare for the disaster, as the hurricane makes landfall a Chinese hacker shuts down all communication, electricity and opens any electronically controlled levees . Now with millions of people in danger and no way to coordinate the U.S defense infrastructure collapses. Thousands die and billions of dollars in property damage causes an economic crisis.

I could further go into how economically dependent the U.S is on China but that point is easily argued against as China is just as dependent on the U.S. This symbiotic relationship is what keeps China and the U.S from coming into direct conflict; but how long can that relationship last? What issue can spark enough aggression to hurl the two largest economies into war? With such a mysterious and unpredictable leadership in China how can the U.S rely on such a delicate balance for national security? Next time the weather man says a major blizzard is coming to New England, or a hurricane in the gulf should I worry that my government will be shutdown by a single Chinese hacker a half world away?

Russia is scary, but China, China is the REAL threat.


If China is doing little territorial grabs because their "scared" of angering the U.S. that implies that China is not willing to attack America, thus meaning that they are not as much of a threat as Russia is. Russia, on the other hand, poses a bigger threat since it is not only willing to support North Korea, a security threat, but it is also preparing for war - no country tries to do this while trying to survive an economic crisis. Not only that, according to CNN, Norad has picked up increased Russian military activity in the skies, which goes to show how far Russia is serious about this. Also, their aggressive territorial grabs also goes to prove that Russia is willing to fight. Picking, strategic allies, such as North Korea also goes to show Russia's interest in attacking the United States and it allies. You make think this is one, big PR stunt, but it isn't.

On the other hand, China is in no position to wage a war against America. In fact, if you study their culture more closely, it is slowly but surely becoming a pro-American people. Not only that, China is in a lofty and comfortable position on the global scale. Many government elements like their current position of making millions of dollars. They do not want to invest in a costly war that may not give back any returns. A war with America would anger many people in China, who depend on their commercial sales in America to get their daily bread and a war against their largest consumer would hurt their sales heavily. This would cause a costly civil war, something the Chinese government would like to avoid. China gearing up for war by upgrading its arsenal doesn't mean it is preparing war against America either. Like America, China has a number of its own threats to deal with and would like stay one step ahead of the threats by doing the same thing America is doing. Also, China has no firm military alliance with any country after it dissolved its relationship with North Korea in 2014. China is on its own, meaning they have no military alliances, which also goes to explains why they are improving their arsenal.

China has no military alliances as said before. Therefore, it would try to seek an alliance with the United States through its diplomatic channels created by the commercial industries. If China attack the United States, the U.S. would not only be alienated and would refuse any alliance, even post-war, but would also bring upon the fury of its allies. Despite having a powerful army, does China really want to take on about fifty or so raging countries and the cold stare of the U.N. ? Apparently, Russia has technically achieved this level of international hate, so it would make sense that Russia is the one who poses a threat to national security.

China also wants to avoid economic and militaristic sanctions against it. Attack America, you attack every Western country. A war like this would end in a bloody and horrific end, something the Chinese government those NOT have the guts for. Unfortunately, Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong-un apparently are willing to do anything against their common foe - America. As it is evident on how they are methodically murdering innocent people, they will not hesitate, even if it means causing a devastating humanitarian disaster.

If there are any issues between the United States of America and the People's Republic of China, it will get resolved quickly. While the American people would like to stay on friendly terms with China, the Chinese people would like to see that their sales are not affected and continue to make money. Also, as said before China is a loner in the world now. It would like to seek a firm alliance with the United States. Attacking the United States will not only completely alienate the American people, but many Westerners too, worsening China's position in the world.

On the other hand, any issue between the United States of America and the Russian Federation, it will boil into a war. Putin will not be cooperative and use the issue as an excuse for the war.

Russia, along with its allies pose a serious threat to American national security. China being the threat is merely when a conspiracy theorist is overthinking this issue.
Debate Round No. 1


Simply put you assume that rational leadership is behind all of China's actions. The fact that the Chinese politburo is a quiet and private government only goes to show how much we don't know about their mindset. Should their leadership decide to advance on oil rich islands in the south china sea then America would be inadvertently dragged into a pacific war. To imply that the oppressive government of China would care about the opinions of its people is further proof that you are ignoring reality for this argument. You mistook one of my arguments before and I would like to clarify, I said that China was not scared of the U.S because the claims it is making are directly against U.S allies, while Russia is only claiming areas unassociated with the U.S. For example, If I didn't want to fight you, I wouldn't attack your best friend or family I would attack some stranger you barely know. Russia is attacking strangers, China is pick-pocketing your family and friends. Further while Russia has increased military flights around U.S and NATO airspace that posts little to no threat to the U.S vastly superior air power and air defense capabilities. Your argument is very near-sighted; Russia is doing relatively minor military exercises and creating weak alliances with failing economies RIGHT NOW and thus is more dangerous than a China who has superior military and technological capabilities, a superior economy, a need and want for oil, and increased powerful alliances around the world because China isn't using all of its power RIGHT NOW.

I am not denying that Russia is a threat, I am simply saying that China is a far greater threat.


You clearly misunderstand the political situation in China. The reason why the Chinese government is so "private" is because they do not want to reveal any details about their lives. Many have accepts bribes, have been involved in embezzlement and participated in scandals. This is how the elements in the Chinese government make millions of dollars. Unfortunately, this creates a unique situation since there is virtually no way to drive these corrupt politicians out of power, thus weakening the state. Also, the Chinese government grants a bit of too much freedom, possibly a bit more than the United States. For example, many Chinese people drive without having ever taken a driving test. The Chinese police have full knowledge about this, but it doesn't bother to even warn the participants in this illegal act. Also, if you speed, the police won't pursue you. Maybe 1 percent of the time you may receive a ticket through the mail, but that's just about it. Any clamp down would result in protest and the Chinese government would not last long. Due to this fact, therefore, the government is unable to mobilize and direct an attack against America. The land grabs in the South China Sea is simply a PR stunt and an ego booster, an attempt to turn the people's attention from the corrupt lives of the Chinese government officials and helping the politician feel good for themselves. The reason why they are grabbing land from an American ally? China is boxed by geographical features around it, providing a very small amount of choices.The oil-rich islands provide the only convenient target to choose.

Like I said before in my first argument, the social culture of China is becoming more of a Western view. The people of China are interested in making money and achieving its commercial goals. They no longer care for national patriotism or any sense of allegiance to their leaders. The Chinese are willing to build an economic empire and have no guts to build a territorial empire. Due to the lack of interest in military conquest, China is a loner in the world. It has no allies.

China does have some advanced weapons programs, but they are progressing along very slowly. For example, China does have the ability to track U.S. Navy ships around the world. Meanwhile, the United States has a strong, 21st century arsenal and would easily scare the daylights out of any Chinese grunt(i.e. Norad knows where every plane and ship is located in the world). This fact also proves why the Chinese are no threat to America.

Meanwhile, in case you weren't keeping up with the news, the Ukraine, one of the nations that is currently being threatened by Russia, is an American ally, thus, according to your analogy, is a "friend". Not only is you "friend" is getting pickpocketed, he is also getting beaten up and thrown around. This approach is very similar to Hitler's approach before WWII. Everyone thought Hitler wasn't a threat, even though he was making territorial grabs all over the place. This is a classical way to not only battle-harden the troops but also achieve a secure position to attack your primary targets. Also, Hitler's clamp down on anything that was not Pro-Hitler is something that Putin is doing right now. The Russian government is becoming increasingly oppressive while China is loosening its grip and it is relaxing. The reason Putin is becoming more oppressive is because of a number of sanctions against. These sanctions are providing an opportunity for Putin to blame the West, rally his citizens underneath him, who now hate the West, and gain an ever-more powerful authoritarian rule. This also gives him the opportunity to block out opposing rivals without the uproar of the people, further making his base of power over Russia even strong. These events are what similarly happened in Nazi Germany under Hitler rule.

Russia has a sizable nuclear arsenal, which can be deployed anywhere in the world within minutes. China has no capabilities like this. Russia is using crises like the Ukrainian crisis to their advantage. They can, at any time threaten to cause a humanitarian disaster by detonating a bunch of nukes in the area, effectively drawing the Americans into the crisis. This is the reason why Russia is preparing itself for battle. It first shifted its army's focus into the region. Then it picked up its military activity in the skies. Now, Putin recently ordered that the Northern Fleet to be stationed in the Black Sea. Unfortunately, Washington D.C. and you, my friend have only focused on the economic situation of Russia and hopes that (according to Forbes) "the leaders in Moscow will act 'rationally'". This is the same mistake that was made before WWI and WWII. It's just a matter of time before Putin blows this bluff with nuke.

Do not be ignorant. Do not repeat history. Russia is the REAL threat. China is simply trying to cover up its scandals and bribes and boost its own ego. It poses no threat.
Debate Round No. 2


byron2032 forfeited this round.


byron2032, you have proved yourself an excellent debater in the first two rounds, something I credit you for. Then you forfeited the final round. I believe the reason why you forfeited is due to the turn of recent events. It is now strongly evident that Putin and his new strategic "friend", North Korea, is preparing to focus their crosshairs on the United States of America and its allies. A good example is the test launch of a new missile developed by the DPRK (CNN). The missile design is very similar to an already existing Russian model. This means that the Russians had already shared a missile design and the North Koreans simply modified it a bit to work for their own purposes. There are also rumors that the North Koreans are developing a new ballistic missile, which means that the they have possibly obtained a design from the Russians.

Another reason why Russia is the real threat is because Putin is reverting back to USSR rule. He has revived FSB, a secret police whose job is to weed out those who oppose Putin's rule. He is also using USSR governing tactics to put the people under his sway and have full control over them. Thus, this means that whatever he does, the people will agree to his decisions. For example. if Putin wanted everybody in Russia and in the Crimean peninsula to do fifty jumping jacks at the same time, the people would comply without hesitation. If he wanted them to all pick up an AK-47 and blindly attack America, they would comply without hesitation. Therefore, this means Putin will have enough force to make any ordinary Russian to follow his will to the letter. He can easily convince the nation of Russia to attack the U.S.A. and its allies, despite the heavy cost.

Is China a threat? NO! The Chinese people are living out their lives with little or no respect for their national patriotism or pride. They are in no position to attack America.

Finally, my friend, you have realized the cold, real, truth. Russia is THE THREAT. China is simply no threat at all.

I only see victory for the pro.

Thank you for debating with me, byron2032.
Debate Round No. 3
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