Symphony

Cadence of Conflict: Asia, June 1, 2020

China says every effort will be made for peaceful reunification with Taiwan as long as there remains hope; force is the last resort. But, Taiwan wants peaceful freedom from tyranny; force is the last resort. There is no hope for China to find any reunification with Taiwan of any kind. China has removed any desire for peaceful reunification with it’s pressured propaganda campaigns around the world and in Taiwan, not to mention terrible handling of Hong Kong. Taiwan has prevented any hope of forceful reunification by arming to the teeth in response to China’s backfired PR campaigns.

Taking Taiwan would hurt and cost both lives and resources. And, Russia knows this. With steep cliffs on the east coast, complex deltas plains on the west coast, and a capital city inside a mountain bowl at the north, any beach landing would make Normandy Beach look like a walk in the park. With mountains peaking even higher than Fuji, China faces a jungle battle like halted America in Vietnam, except this battle would only be uphill.

If China prioritized such a venture, using either or both of its two copied aircraft carriers with its copied fighter jets and its copied missiles and copied drones, China’s neighbors would see an opportunity even if the US didn’t respond with any of its forty-four home-made carriers.

India, with one billion people, is no forced-friend of China, especially in recent months. A Taiwan distraction would be the perfect chance to free Tibet. Two thousand years of anti-friendship relations between Vietnam and China would require enormous numbers of soldiers to keep the Vietnamese from taking Nanjing as a pathway to the island of Hainan. Vietnam has a motive anyway, keep China at a safer distance for its history of aggression. With China occupied at the west and east while squandering enormous forces at Taiwan, Japan—a larger economy than India—has its own grudge and would love the chance for target practice near Beijing. None of the other countries small enough to be bought off and bullied would bring much help nor will to China’s aid.

Then, there’s the US after China would be in enough trouble. Russia doesn’t want more trouble, for all Moscow’s effort to seduce Europe by appearing pacifist. If China ever did manage to reach a Pyrrhic victory over Taiwan, China would have no defenses left, Tibet might be gone, then Japan and Vietnam would have taken their own bits out of the map. China would be clean pickings between the US and China’s frenemy Russia.

Russia is no friend of China. Who do you think gave China the idea of this wasted pursuit? All of that assumes things go well with the one billion Chinese who hate their government more than ever before in history.

So, why did Taiwan request a lower-grade missile—because it comes with a vehicle Taiwan already has? It’s not because Taiwan actually needs it. No. Talking about arming again to the teeth already armed to puts a kind of social pressure on Beijing, a sense of urgency. Taiwan sees what China is up against. Taiwan knows that Confucian culture can’t pass up the opportunity to self-destruct in order to save face. Taiwan’s policy is clear: Bring it.

Great Pacific

Taiwan president pledges humanitarian relief for Hong Kongers // Yahoo News

Nikki Haley says ‘Chinese takeover of HK’ would ‘endanger Taiwan’ // Taiwan News

Trade & Tech

South Korea is the pivot in the Huawei wars // Asia Times

Huawei’s Nightmare Week Is About To Get Much Worse // Forbes

Taiwan

Them sound like fightin words
Chinese general says Beijing will ‘resolutely smash’ any separatist moves by Taiwan // SCMP

Taiwan Wants Land-Based Harpoon Anti-Ship Missiles To Counter Growing Chinese Naval Power // The Drive

War drums…
Defense minister says Taiwan prepared for China attack // Taiwan News

Boost Ties with Taiwan: China can’t dictate terms for everyone in Asia // Times of India

Hong Kongers in Taiwan worried over possible law suspension // Focus Taiwan

Hong Kong

What could losing US ‘special status’ mean for Hong Kong? // indiatoday.in

Broken treaty:
China’s public security ministry vows to ‘fully guide’ Hong Kong’s embattled police force in safeguarding stability and restoring order // SCMP

Hong Kong national security law: US gets little backing with hard line on China, as other countries steer clear of threats // SCMP

2,878 : 1 in CCP approve!
Chinese parliament approves controversial Hong Kong security law // Guardian

Chinese version, CCP vote on HK security law…
2878票贊成、1票反對、6票棄權:中國人大通過「港版國安法」!// 風傳媒 // Storm Media

Hong Kong is no longer autonomous from China, US determines, as Mike Pompeo makes certification that may mean sanctions // SCMP

Hong Kong police arrest hundreds and fire pepper pellets amid fresh unrest // BBC News

Hong Kong protests: police arrest 180 peopleoint as Legislative Council begins debate on national anthem law // SCMP

China threatens US with counter measures if punished for Hong Kong law // SCMP

Hong Kong mobilizing again to counter CCP encroachment // Taiwan News

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Symphony

Cadence of Conflict: Asia, May 18, 2020

It was a week of slap after slap in China’s face. Congress pokes at Human Rights in Xinjiang among other old-news grievances. China “warns” the US—again—about Huawei, apparently unaware that warnings require power or at least clout, of which China retains neither.

As blame circulates against China for a global outbreak, Taiwan courts favor. Airlines have corrected a listing that identifies Taiwan as somehow part of China or something-or-other. You know you’ve lost when airline companies aren’t even afraid of you.

The dirtiest and best-kept secret is about war. China can’t even threaten military action against America because of the elections in America. While American polling likely lies as usual, war is good for any sitting president’s numbers. Threat of war would be good news for America’s incumbent, whomever that incumbent may be.

So, China is left with a choice: Wait until the West is even stronger in China’s back yard and face shame for not acting or else respond to Western provocation to start a war too early and face shame for losing.  · · · →

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Symphony

Cadence of Conflict: Asia, May 11, 2020

China must brace itself for war. Regardless of any plot from America being true or false, how Beijing handled Wuhan—or rather mishandled—will not be overlooked by the free world. Regardless of how different governments handled the outbreak, the West will see an outbreak that wouldn’t have happened if China had followed the same forthright standards that the West does. The West thought China was on its way to following standards. But, Confucian Communism knows no standard except its own authoritarianism.

How did China get this far? There is so much in China to be desired, including the Bible-based government Dr. Sun Yat-Sen started over a century ago. Chinese medicine addresses many matters of health that elude Western pharmacy. Politeness, indirection, family, and respect—these are virtues the West could have learned from China. Except, just look at what’s happening now.

The term kowtow came from Hong Kong Cantonese. Bowing and placating the bully emboldens the bully.  · · · →

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, May 4, 2020

The anti-China machine is in full gear. Western nations are cranking out new reasons to hate China every day. Some is true, some is not, all is justified because China chose to respond in control, concealment, and censorship. Much how George W Bush build a case against Iraq, which many believed to be fake from the get go, people will support action against China because of other indisputable things China has done.

The better road would have been to empower China with values rather than enabling China with money. Some foolishly thought, or at least claimed to think, that giving China Western money would teach China Western values. That’s as silly an idea as thinking that giving a child a birthday cake every day will teach the child to appreciate hard work. Instead of virtue, the West raised China be like Marie Antoinette who answered poverty by saying, “Let them eat cake.”

China’s solution to Western growth is to defeat the West with technology copied from the West. That’s not a nation that learned our values, but underappreciated our hard work to a point that they would go to war with great weakness: lack of ingenuity. Like a butcher prepares a cow, the West fattened China for the slaughter and China was all to happy to get fat and angry.

Great Pacific

Taiwan refutes Philippine claim that China has say in OFW’s fate // Taiwan News

China

Intelligence report says China lied about origin of coronavirus // NY Post

Chinese military lashes out at American warship’s ‘intrusion’ in South China Sea // SCMP

China Standards 2035: Behind Beijing’s plan to shape future technology // CNBC

China is installing surveillance cameras outside people’s front doors … and sometimes inside their homes // CNN

Hong Kong

China’s new ‘rule of law’ in Hong Kong sets stage for new protests // Yahoo News

Hong Kong police break up pro-democracy singing protest at mall // Yahoo News

Korean Peninsula

Kim Jong Un surfaces on state media with mark on wrist // NY Post

Kim Jong Un may be at North Korea resort compound after satellite images spot luxury boats // Fox News

Kim Jong Un’s uncle emerges as possible successor in North Korea // NY Post

Military Faceoff

The F-35 Can’t Fly Supersonic // Popular Mechanics

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Symphony

Cadence of Conflict: Asia, March 23, 2020

China's in trouble—deep trouble. America pauses with the same hush of silence that swept the country from the outskirts of Washington to New Orleans in 1812, gathering around the radio in 1941, or staring at the same TV images on repeat in 2001. While America pauses and reflects, China accuses, taunts, and threatens, as if the world wasn't already angry enough about the jobs lost to a Communist country that promotes leaders for party loyalty rather than governing competence.

There is no PR campaign, no cooperation, no compensation that can buy back decades of ill will. That ill will against China was only fueled by governments and leaders who allowed themselves to be trodden on, quite an evil thing the West did to set China up for such embarrassment. But, the Communist Chinese do themselves no service by fitting the stereotype handed to them.

While China faces Western scorn, Taiwan shines like Venus at twilight. They have the breakout under control almost as much as they have public panic on mute. The Taiwanese premier jokes about everyone having only one butt hole, then encourages everyone to buy, buy, buy—it helps the economy, after all, and there is plenty of supply. While Taiwan clips right along, clamping down as needed, China's jealousy only simmers and froths. The Communists across the Straight want the results of capitalism and competence, without any of the actions or guiding virtues.

When scorn and jealousy mix and reach a critical boiling point, like fudge, China will start to harden. If these are the days when China invades Taiwan, a roused and ready America won't be the only thing stopping them. Taiwanese are already well-stocked at home from a virus that China perceivedly  caused. They can stay at home. They have the defenses and pantries to hold out for America, who is alive and well and hungry to kick someone's butt.

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Symphony

Encore of Revival: America, September 16, 2019

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=92cVA_EwNI0

America faces a crossroads. We have enemies mounting against us. Great monsters, fed and allowed to grow, are coming back to haunt us, hunt us, and devour us. It's scary. And, there is a natural tendency to negotiate and avoid provoking wrath of what already wants to eat us.

Some Americans—many, perhaps—have done very bad things in the past. But, many of us learn and improve. Others of us fought against the injustice. Like any nation, America needs to heal, grow, fight the bad, and strengthen the good. We don't need to all lay down and die as our enemies want.

Death comes like a burglar, sneaking in the night. It seeks to isolate, frighten, paralyze first with fear, then with venom, and finally consume. Death makes us long for fear and even death itself. Don't follow its poisonous seduction.

When a people find their heart, no matter how dark times have become, they have what they need to overcome any obstacle. The greatest battle is not over land or law, nor waged with guns or swords, but over the heart and fought with the heart.

We face trying, fearful times. By standing on our values, no matter the cost, we will pay a lesser price in the long run anyway.

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Symphony

Encore of Revival: America, May 13, 2019

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omi8iWgpddU

War! That's next. With 2019 oaths of office sworn, with the 2020 presidential on the horizon, and with the Democrats clinging to demagoguery long after their fake investigation proved fake, the Left has left no alternative. War is one of the best ways to seal up a second term. Because it involves democracy, that is a calculation our Communist enemies can't understand. If the Communist world wanted to defeat the US—and if the communists in the Democratic Party wanted to defeat the Republicans—they'd play "peace possum" for two years. But, Communists have the learning curve of a cat.

The US is not moving resources to the Fifth Fleet in the Middle East because of some recent Iranian rhetoric. Iran makes and poses threats more often than North Korea. If Iran's most recent threats are special, it's from the smell of blood on the horizon as the sun comes up over the South Sea. Whether for caution or concern, the Pentagon is beefing-up the Fifth Fleet because the Seventh Fleet is about to get busy with China.

We don't want anyone taking advantage of the situation.

With Trump having pulled out of Syria and Afghanistan, Russia has every reason to be nice, for now. Extra missiles might make sure Iran does too—or if Iran can't get smart, at least change Iran along with the change about to happen to China. Moscow may tell Tehran to behave. New Delhi may feel emboldened give the same advice to Beijing, but you know cats.

War is coming and victory with it, both for the US and for the Republicans.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, January 14, 2019

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3m_tL9xEgE

China is preparing for war. It has said so in public. It has demonstrated so with militarization of "Made in China" islands that didn't exist a decade ago. It has shown intent by showing no sense of limits in cyber-warfare, technology acquisition, and oppression of the press. Facebook and Twitter users are only a "security threat" to those easily threatened.

Unlike China, the United States does not make a habit of announcing its newest military technology to the world. Whatever warfare breaks out between the US and China in the Western Pacific, China's capabilities will have been known well in advance, but the US will likely employ weapons not yet known to the public. One needs no inside information to forecast as much, only a familiarity with the parts of history that tend to repeat.

But, we are not looking at WWIII, not yet. While the brewing conflict in the Western Pacific will likely involve many countries and islands, Russia is not yet ready for the big one. NATO's presence in Europe is still too strong and Putin has not had enough time to amass his forces as he would like. Both Russia and the US would want things to quiet down rather quickly. Every effort from the White House to back away from conflicts with Russia suggests that a deal has already been struck with the Kremlin—that an expansionist campaign from China will not receive meaningful Russian help if squashed by the United States.

The question will concern how many Mainland China military supply installations Russia will allow the US to strike. But, if the US intervenes with Taiwan or razes the artificial islands on Mischief Reef, don't expect China to receive backup from Russia. Moscow took Crimea with a favorable referendum and no bloodshed. The Kremlin would expect just as much success from Beijing in order to court respect and cooperation. Right now, things don't look that way. 80% of Taiwanese rejecting reunification with China is a near flip to the support Russia received from Crimeans. Backroom Moscow secretly mocks Beijing, no matter how much money the Chinese pay them. Moscow would be fools if they didn't.

In the supposed "Chinese invasion plans" for Taiwan, there are multiple phases, including opportunistic retaliation from India. But, those plans fail to anticipate retaliation from the insulted Vietnamese, who also hold a long-standing grudge against China. Then, there is the ancient ethnic spite between China and Japan. Mongolia also has border disputes. Tibet is not the only province that wants to break away. It is doubtful Sun Tzu would have advised an expansion campaign while surrounded by enemies, especially as a mere means of being respected.

It would take a miracle and a half to stay whatever makes the pluming smoke on the horizon of the last decade. But, it won't last long. No one wants this to drag on. No, like "The Great War" (WWI) set the stage for WWII, the approaching war in the Pacific will set the stage for the big one that comes after.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, January 14, 2019

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3m_tL9xEgE

China is preparing for war. It has said so in public. It has demonstrated so with militarization of "Made in China" islands that didn't exist a decade ago. It has shown intent by showing no sense of limits in cyber-warfare, technology acquisition, and oppression of the press. Facebook and Twitter users are only a "security threat" to those easily threatened.

Unlike China, the United States does not make a habit of announcing its newest military technology to the world. Whatever warfare breaks out between the US and China in the Western Pacific, China's capabilities will have been known well in advance, but the US will likely employ weapons not yet known to the public. One needs no inside information to forecast as much, only a familiarity with the parts of history that tend to repeat.

But, we are not looking at WWIII, not yet. While the brewing conflict in the Western Pacific will likely involve many countries and islands, Russia is not yet ready for the big one. NATO's presence in Europe is still too strong and Putin has not had enough time to amass his forces as he would like. Both Russia and the US would want things to quiet down rather quickly. Every effort from the White House to back away from conflicts with Russia suggests that a deal has already been struck with the Kremlin—that an expansionist campaign from China will not receive meaningful Russian help if squashed by the United States.

The question will concern how many Mainland China military supply installations Russia will allow the US to strike. But, if the US intervenes with Taiwan or razes the artificial islands on Mischief Reef, don't expect China to receive backup from Russia. Moscow took Crimea with a favorable referendum and no bloodshed. The Kremlin would expect just as much success from Beijing in order to court respect and cooperation. Right now, things don't look that way. 80% of Taiwanese rejecting reunification with China is a near flip to the support Russia received from Crimeans. Backroom Moscow secretly mocks Beijing, no matter how much money the Chinese pay them. Moscow would be fools if they didn't.

In the supposed "Chinese invasion plans" for Taiwan, there are multiple phases, including opportunistic retaliation from India. But, those plans fail to anticipate retaliation from the insulted Vietnamese, who also hold a long-standing grudge against China. Then, there is the ancient ethnic spite between China and Japan. Mongolia also has border disputes. Tibet is not the only province that wants to break away. It is doubtful Sun Tzu would have advised an expansion campaign while surrounded by enemies, especially as a mere means of being respected.

It would take a miracle and a half to stay whatever makes the pluming smoke on the horizon of the last decade. But, it won't last long. No one wants this to drag on. No, like "The Great War" (WWI) set the stage for WWII, the approaching war in the Pacific will set the stage for the big one that comes after.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, November 19, 2018

In Taiwanese politics, a mayor candidate's comments about his own benefits from drinking honey-lemonade sparked retribution from the medical community. After a lump under his eye went away, apparently from a vegetarian and honey-lemonade diet, he actually said so. A professional from a hospital was quick to weigh in. It's understandable. If people learned that honey could cure disease, hospital profits would plunge. More importantly, Taiwanese political debates would become outright boring without the ability to, as the saying goes, make lemonade from political debates.

But, lemonade really is important. Google search results even saw a spike after this essential talk of Taiwanese politics made news.

Meanwhile, at the ASEAN summit in Singapore, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong called for nations to come together at a time when Southeast Asian stability was under threat. In anticipation of APEC after ASEAN, Mike Pence started talking tough, wanting results and genuine action from China concerning an even-flow of trade. He elaborated, that the US has a quarter of a billion dollars in tariffs and isn't afraid to go twice as high as well as take more "diplomatic" action. It was a strong "they know that we know that they know what we think" remark, the kind that precedes otherwise objectionable action to make the action unobjectionable.

Later, at APEC, Pence warned of returning to a "cold war" while making plans for a US-Australian naval base in Papua New Guinea. Rather than dropping its tilted tariffs on goods, China has been openly gearing up for all out war three weeks. APEC ended without a written agreement between member nations for the first time ever because of the disagreements between the US and China.

This past weekend, Taiwan did something that China despises every bit as much as it cannot identify with: Taiwan hosted democratic election campaigns. With all the strong rhetoric concerning Taiwan, independence, and China's loudly and often-spoken determination to invade Taiwan, there shouldn't be any question where China's war-in-preparation will start and why America will easily get involved.

America is already involved in Taiwan to quite an extent. AIT, the unofficial yet de facto US embassy in Taiwan, had an interview scheduled for release with a large TV network in Taiwan. But, after the interview, the TV network, TVBS, scrapped the interview. So, AIT shared the interview in its Facebook page, rather than relying on TVBS.

With the history lessons about Taiwan in almost every Taiwan-related story in the Western press, Americans will take an advancement against Taiwan as an advancement against themselves. China would be perceived as an aggressor and rightly so. Everything the US has done to provoke and irritate China would have only worked if China possessed the old school "Asian Pride" that Sun Tzu warned against, a pride that can't be permitted in a world's superpower because such pride is easily provoked just as much as it is easily shattered. Hardened pride makes for brittle peace. That's something that the entire West won't allow, the US notwithstanding.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, December 18, 2017

All signs indicate a gear-up for war. The US is full on-tilt, not only in military prep, but also in blaming China. The US and China face each other with North Korea in the middle. There is nothing China or Russia will do to stop Washington from gobbling North Korea whole, but a reaction is to be expected. A war just east of China's border should rouse China's military, if for no other reason than that North Korea might go rogue and invade China as a means of escape.

The US also has a precarious position. China trades with and supplies North Korea; of particular interest is oil. The US recently reached an oil deal with China to pay back China on old debts with oil from Alaska. Recent comments from Washington, including a statement at the UN, include that China must do its part to stop feeding North Korea, otherwise the US will take its own means of handling the part it was hoped China would handle. That's no threat, but it is an expected warning, as it is expected that Beijing would respond defensively.

So, we are headed to war and China won't sit this one out. While it is unlikely the Chinese would help North Korea defend a war with the US, the more likely option is an invasion of Taiwan. If China invades Taiwan, it would likely be seen as mere retaliation from the West, but would make strategic sense from China's view—at least if China assumes that invading Taiwan could be a success. With the US busy and expanding pro-democracy South Korea's borders northward, China would naturally want more territory. China might also thing that the US is too occupied with Korea to worry about Taiwan. And, the recent step-up in regular rhetoric over bipartisan support in Congress to defend Taiwan is China's perfect excuse to justify a strike of its own.

We'll have to wait and see how things play out. But, don't think that there isn't plenty of China-blaming in the press, including speculation that China would actually back North Korea militarily or even the smear by making China look inhumane for its implementation of the death sentence. Human Rights or not, there are press forces in the West always trying to smear China. But, just as much rhetoric comes from all sides, including Russia.

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Faux Report

Could Denying Russians From Olympic Games Start Another War?

rio

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil – 

Analysts fear tensions with the Russians could lead to another war if the Russians are banned from participating in the Olympic games. The Russian sports minister says “up to 67 athletes” have applied to track and field’s world governing body to be exempted from the ban on the Russian team at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics

The IAAF is unlikely to approve most of the 67 athletes, since it has previously indicated the exemption is aimed at a small minority of athletes based abroad.

When a global governing body for sports barred Russia’s track and field team from the 2016 Summer Olympics on Friday over a wide-ranging doping scandal, it was greeted in Russia, as is with a deep sense of victimhood.

President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia called the decision “unjust, of course.”

Mr. Putin said, “Russia is strengthening antidoping controls and athletes should bear personal responsibility for using performance-enhancing drugs.” Punishing the whole team, he said, “doesn’t fit any norms of civilized behavior.”

Outside Russia, sporting officials viewed the unanimous decision as a long overdue restoration of some fairness in competitions. After all, in some sporting events Russian athletes had been trouncing competitors for years before it turned out they were using performance-enhancing drugs.

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Faux Report

Could Denying Russians From Olympic Games Start Another War?

rio

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil – 

Analysts fear tensions with the Russians could lead to another war if the Russians are banned from participating in the Olympic games. The Russian sports minister says “up to 67 athletes” have applied to track and field’s world governing body to be exempted from the ban on the Russian team at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics

The IAAF is unlikely to approve most of the 67 athletes, since it has previously indicated the exemption is aimed at a small minority of athletes based abroad.

When a global governing body for sports barred Russia’s track and field team from the 2016 Summer Olympics on Friday over a wide-ranging doping scandal, it was greeted in Russia, as is with a deep sense of victimhood.

President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia called the decision “unjust, of course.”

Mr. Putin said, “Russia is strengthening antidoping controls and athletes should bear personal responsibility for using performance-enhancing drugs.” Punishing the whole team, he said, “doesn’t fit any norms of civilized behavior.”

Outside Russia, sporting officials viewed the unanimous decision as a long overdue restoration of some fairness in competitions. After all, in some sporting events Russian athletes had been trouncing competitors for years before it turned out they were using performance-enhancing drugs.

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Faux Report

Government Plans To End ‘War On Drugs’ By 2018

wars

WASHINGTON, D.C. – 

People of all stripes are asking a question, “Should all drugs be legalized?” For many people, the answer is yes, traditional, younger liberals are not the only ones who agree.

“There are many academic and anecdotal reasons to support the belief that all drugs should be legalized and the money spent for incarcerating those convicted of possession or even low-level dealing should be spent on rehabilitation and jobs training instead,” says Republican Senator Roy Blunt. “We are working on a bill that will end the war on drugs, so we can focus on more important things like the war on terror. If there are less drug offenders in our overcrowded prisons, there will be more room to incarcerate suspected terrorists.”

This attitude is representative of most Americans, as attitudes about drugs have changed drastically over the last 15 years. According to a Pew report, in 2001, 47% of all Americans supported the notion that states might eliminate mandatory sentences for drug users. At the time, the news was full of drive-by shootings and turf wars all over the nation and the citizenry as a whole was tired of violence. By 2014, 67% of Americans believed that mandatory sentencing was wrong for lower level possession and dealing of drugs. People believed it was more important to focus on treating drug users, and this included people caught with cocaine and heroin.

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