[Ed. – They’ve done this before. It’s still not common, but it’s not unprecedented now. The cages it rattles are Japan’s and South Korea’s. Both Moscow and Beijing have reasons to try to drive Tokyo and Seoul apart — which isn’t that hard to do, at least on certain subjects. If the big land powers can load the South Korea-Japan relationship with too much freight, they can shape geopolitical conditions in the regions more to their advantage.]
Russian and Chinese bombers flew a joint patrol mission over the Western Pacific Tuesday in a show of increasingly close military ties between Moscow and Beijing.
The Russian military said that a pair of its Tu-95 strategic bombers and four Chinese H-6K bombers flew over the Sea of Japan and the East China Sea.
The Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement that the joint mission was intended to “develop and deepen the comprehensive Russia-China partnership, further increase the level of cooperation between the two militaries, expand their ability for joint action and strengthen strategic stability.”
The ministry added that the patrol flight “wasn’t directed against any third countries.”
Tuesday’s mission was the second such flight since a July 2019 patrol over the same area.