The Pentagon said the pandemic was a way to postpone U.S. disagreements with Russia and China

At the same time, the military department noted that Washington continues to closely monitor Beijing’s military activity, as it continues to consider China a strategic rival.

The Pentagon said the pandemic was a way to postpone U.S. disagreements with Russia and China

The New Coronavirus Pandemic provides an opportunity to set aside U.S. disagreements with Russia and China and seek ways to engage constructively. This was announced Thursday at a telephone briefing for journalists by Chad Sbragia, deputy assistant to the Pentagon’s chief for Chinese affairs, and Michael Ryan, deputy assistant to the Pentagon’s chief for Europe and NATO affairs.

“I think it is important to note that a global pandemic is an opportunity to put aside differences and seek constructive ways of cooperation. The U.S. of course welcomes China’s call to fight the COVID-19 pandemic [caused by the new coronavirus] together, and we welcome China’s provision of high-quality assistance that will alleviate suffering around the world, including in Europe. This pandemic, of course, underlines the importance of clear communication and transparency in combating a common threat”, –  said Sbragia.

“There are areas where we can cooperate and make sure that, for example, China and Russia produce high quality equipment and deliver it to where it is needed, without any additional political or economic conditions – this is the type of behavior that we would like to see from Russia and China, and this is the type of behavior that we all in the world are trying to demonstrate”, – Ryan said in turn.

Sbragia also noted that while the current period of the pandemic is a time for “joint work, coordination and cooperation,” Washington continues to closely monitor Beijing’s military activity as it continues to regard China as a strategic rival. “We are very closely watching China, especially its military activity”, –  he said.

“We’re watching their every move, as I’m sure they are watching ours too”, –  added the deputy assistant secretary of defense.

The U.S. presented the first new version of its National Defense Strategy in 10 years, January 19, 2018. In it, they announced that they are returning to the era of rivalry between great powers, and designated Russia and China as their strategic rivals.

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