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The disintegration of the former Soviet Union in 1991 was a geopolitical disaster for Russia. But the watershed event, paradoxically, prompted Moscow and Beijing, erstwhile adversaries, to draw closer together, as they watched with disbelief the United States’ triumphalist narrative of the end of the Cold War, overturning the order they both had regarded, despite all their mutual differences and disputes, as crucial for their national status and identities.


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