When you’re locking Russia into its role as junior partner on the road to global leadership, you’re not going to let the fact that its president is an indicted suspected war criminal get in the way. So, China’s President Xi walked the red carpet laid out for him by Russia’s President Putin and shook him firmly by the wallet.

Xi claims that the US seeks to “contain, surround and block, and suppress” China’s rise. To counter that, it is necessary to forge a strategic relationship with the only sizeable country which opposes Washington. When US President Richard Nixon went to China in 1972 it was to split the faltering relationship between the People’s Republic and the Soviet Union. It worked. For the foreseeable future there is no such gap in which an American president will be able to drive a wedge. This is Cold War 2.0.