Symphony

Cadence of Conflict: Asia, December 14, 2020

Hit pieces against China are coming out as if from an avalanche. More dangerous, they are coupled with Western plans of military expansion in China’s back yard. From Xinjiang teens to disappearing journalists to Australian wine to spies in America to colleges—to a global virus pandemic—Western readers have no rest from bad news of China.

The equation has been there and in play. America’s election appears stolen to 75% of Republican voters and 30% of Democrats. Elections require agreement on results in order to function. Lack of agreement on a trustworthy election is unusual as it is staggering. That’s a mandate for Trump to take drastic action, deny Biden’s inauguration, and take measures to remain in office that can’t avoid national inflammation.

As inevitable American conflict in January comes into closer view coupled with such bad press on China, the US strategy in the West Pacific is more and more difficult to deny. China was always the perfect distraction from the mess at home. The problem is that the American populous no longer responds as usual. A national attack may not have the uniting effect it once did—at least not uniting enough to keep any president in office in the face of an election so disputed.

Taiwan continues the role as the “China virus” poster boy. The Taiwanese handle things so well, don’t they. Strict rules on breaking quarantine—punishing a foreigner with thousands in fines for walking in the hallway outside his room for eight seconds—but Taiwanese officials forgot to lock the quarantine door because the world is supposed to believe Taiwan is so careful, right?

At some point, it should become obvious that we are playing a game of charades with who is good and bad—or at least on who is how good and how bad. As China’s role is to be the common enemy for divided Americans and a divided West to unite against, China’s big mistake—over decades and to this day—was to play that role all too gladly. A shoe was made and China chose to fit it.

Indo-Pacific

Britain to send largest warship, carrier strike group to Indian Ocean next year // Hindustan Times

China

Chinese authorities detain Bloomberg news assistant // Taiwan News

China replies over latest wine tariffs as Australia’s Trade Minister lashes out at Beijing // News.com.au

Chaguan – China is doubling down in Xinjiang // The Economist

Eric Swalwell says he did not share sensitive information with suspected Chinese spy // CNN

‘Being young’ leads to detention in China’s Xinjiang region // Guardian

Pompeo warns of Chinese threat to US colleges, says many ‘basically bought’ by Beijing // Fox News

South China Sea: Beijing’s military bases in disputed waters would be very difficult to defend, report claims // CNN

Taiwan

Man fined $3,500 for breaking Taiwan quarantine for 8 seconds // CNN

Hong Kong

Hong Kong’s Carrie Lam faces Japan bank freeze-out as Tokyo says it will abide by US sanctions // SCMP

Exiled Hong Kong legislator calls for action after HSBC bank accounts frozen // Guardian

Military Faceoff

Navy’s Future Light Amphibious Ships Will Be Designed to Operate Off China’s Coast // Military.com

Makin Island ARG Operating in the South China Sea While Beijing Claims U.S. ‘Muscle Flexing’ // USNI News

The US Navy wants to find ships to kill using aerial drones launched from submarines // Defense News

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, November 30, 2020

America has China fooled yet again. It isn’t hard to figure out, but still ingenious. Whatever strategist first learned it from a convenient mistake that happened with Taiwan. Taiwan’s current president, Tsai Ing-Wen, had previously endorsed Hillary, for 2016—a mistake she didn’t repeat in the 2020 election. When Trump was elected, Taiwan’s government was heavily concerned about retaliation from the Trump administration. But, Americans don’t hold grudges nor do we hold high regard for the opinions of foreign world leaders. Tsai reached out to Trump and they soon developed one of the best relationships heads of state ever shared.

China’s president, Xi Jinping, doesn’t seem to have learned that lesson, however. While many world leaders congratulated Biden when the news industry decided what the future should be, China waited until the GSA got the green light for transition steps. Then, he congratulated Biden on his victory. Taiwan still has not made any move since the electoral college has not convened and remains neutral and welcoming toward whomever the American president will be in January. China’s position shows worry mixed with miscalculation.

When Trump’s lawsuits, appeal to state legislatures, and near 80% support from his suspecting base land him a second term, China will be in for a shock. They will fear retaliation just as Taiwan did, no matter how unwarranted. This will drive China to take defensive measures without need and appear as the provocateur of the coming US-China conflict. Having served its purpose, US ambiguity over the election will quickly pass, and China’s leadership will begin to socially self destruct. Then hold on; things will be furious as they will be fast.

Indo-Pacific

To be taken seriously, Quad needs military heft, not desultory naval exercises // India Express

Navy sends aircraft carrier USS Nimitz back to Persian Gulf // NY Post

Trade & Tech

Trump to add China’s SMIC and CNOOC to defense blacklist: Reuters // CNBC

Huawei founder says American politicians wants to kill the company // Android Authority

TSMC Reveals a Major Breakthrough Process coming to their 2024 2nm Processors that will Power Future Apple Devices // Patently Apple

China

Exiled bookseller: ‘If they can take Hong Kong back, the next place is Taiwan’ // Guardian

Beijing takes its South China Sea strategy to the Himalayas // Economic Times

Beijing Takes Its South China Sea Strategy to the Himalayas // Hindia News

China’s Xi Jinping Congratulates Biden On Election Win, Urges Cooperation // NPR

Xi Jinping calls to congratulate Joe Biden on election win // Guardian

Taiwan

Usage of hotline for foreigners takes off amid pandemic // Taipei Times

Fists and pig guts fly in Taiwan parliament debate on U.S. pork // Yahoo News

Taiwan starts submarine production // Taipei Times

Korean Peninsula

North Korea Covid: Why Kim Jong Un is cutting off China // CNN

India

China responds to India banning 43 additional Chinese apps // CNBC

Military Faceoff

Aboard USS Ford: More Weapons, More Launches, Faster & Safer // Breaking Defense

Naval Group Opens Office in Philippines with Submarine Deal in Sight // Naval News

Iran launches unconventional aircraft carrier against US threat // FleetMon

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, November 9, 2020

China and Taiwan are in a military face-off for a singular reason: xenophobia. Taiwan had everything it needed to counter China without help from the US, but it snubbed foreigners and still continues to do so today. Were it not for the US, neither China nor Taiwan would have limped so far along. China’s “miracle” economy was made of money from the US. Taiwan’s weapons use technology developed primarily by the US.

As much as both China and Taiwan have benefited from the US, these two countries have some of the most strict laws against naturalizing foreigners. That doesn’t include a serious lack of protection against intrusion of immigrants’ rights. When Americans—or any other Westerner—or any other foreigner for that matter—finds work in Taiwan or China, companies impose extra rules to take away what few legal rights they have as foreign employees; then government does nothing, it just sits there and watches. In Taiwan, this largely happens with employment. In China, it happens with entire companies.

Even if foreign workers can find a way to survive the onslaught of attacks against their rights, the most they could expect in the end is an elevated residence status—if they are rich. If they aren’t wealthy, no chance. Without citizenship, foreigners in Taiwan have few rights—they aren’t even allowed a phone and landlords can reject them merely on the basis of being a foreigner.

China aside, if Taiwan allowed, then protected a path to citizenship for Westerners working in Taiwan, those naturalized citizens would have had more rights to work and contribute to Taiwan’s culture, language, economy, and technology. If that had happened, it very well could be the US seeking to buy weapons from Taiwan, and China might be more inclined to behave.

The same could be said of China, which has made itself so desperately dependent on US money by keeping foreigners within their own borders at an arm’s length.

This conflict between Taiwan and China was caused by xenophobia from both sides. By not demanding equal respect toward Americans in their borders, but engaging in trade and weapons sales anyway, the US allowed two kittens to grow into a bobcat and a tiger. And, now the whole world faces a huge cat fight—whenever China decides to take advantage of the election ambiguity in the US and bust a foolish move against Taiwan.

Indo-Pacific

US Super-Carrier Nimitz To Join INS VikramAditya For Next QUAD Drills As Beijing Laments Anti-China Grouping // EurAsian Times

The Philippines Could Start Oil Drilling In South China Sea Without China // OilPrice.com

China

Jack Ma and Ant Financial Are In Trouble! // YouTube @ China Uncensored

China Is TERRIFIED of Economic Decoupling // YouTube @ China Uncensored

China’s yuan has its worst fall in years on fears of renewed US tension // CNN

Taiwan

The Truth in Taiwan by CJayride // YouTube @ cjayride

Most positive over US ties, whoever wins, survey says // Taipei Times

US urges the WHO to invite Taiwan // Taipei Times

National security fears raised over seizure of bullets // Taipei Times

Taiwan TSMC begins hiring campaign in preparation for U.S. fab // Taiwan News

Hong Kong

PLA video shows armoured personnel carriers driving through streets of Hong Kong before conducting live-fire exercise // SCMP

Grandma Wong was a key figure in Hong Kong’s protest movement — until she disappeared // CNN

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, September 14, 2020

It was only a matter of time. The stories are breaking about Taiwan’s inhospitality toward foreigners.

Taiwan has the lowest birthrate in the world. They need people; they need talent; they need support. By denying dual-citizenship to foreigners who would have become dual citizens under similar circumstances in almost any other country, Taiwan is not filled with dual-nationals from around the world.

Czech might send politicians to visit Taiwan, but since there aren’t many Czech-Taiwanese dual citizens in Taiwan for Czech to protect, don’t expect military support. If Taiwan had immigration policies comparable to the other nations they want help from, they would have many citizens from those countries; but they don’t. If the Chinese bombed Taiwan, they would hurt citizens from around the world. China might think twice. But instead, any Westerners in Taiwan are simply expats who have no reason to stay, and it’s all thanks to Taiwan government bigotry inherited from an ancient culture made in ancient China.

Taiwan had mistreated and given the red tape runaround toward ESL teachers, European students on scholarship, and who knows what kind of superstitious “cursed black skin” comments have been told to people from Africa. American-born Taiwanese are native English speakers, but denied ESL jobs with the claim “only a White face can teach English”. Leave it to Taiwanese business owners to think Chinese-speakers know how to teach English best.

Now, Hong Kong needed help from Taiwan and saw the same bigotry Taiwan refused to address for decades. And in case anyone wondered, that’s why Taiwan is on the brink of war with China. The Taiwanese government hasn’t built the foundations of justice in society that make an economy resilient to war.

Pacific Daily Times has stories spanning back over a decade. Public appeals have been made and ignored. Recent information says that Taiwan has zero progress in changing its bigotous immigrant policies. But, the Times chooses not to elaborate on the recent resurgence of this decades-old problem for one reason: America’s election.

Such a problem so old should not be overshadowed by routine election cycles. It must not be said that a problem spanning back thousands of years should come up—of all times—two months before the 2020 American presidential election. Taiwan’s ancient-Chinese bigotry must not be reduced to an October surprise.

Taiwan is worth saving, as Jesus said of everyone. The Taiwanese people are amazingly friendly toward foreigners—as long as the Taiwanese are either younger or international, or if the foreigner is White and rich and neither student nor ESL teacher. Taiwan has the potential to change and improve, just as America was among the first nations to ban the human sin of slavery, starting with its own. But, Taiwan must make the choice for Taiwan.

Will there be war in Taiwan? One cannot understand our times while refusing to account for the God who holds all time in His hands. From Deuteronomy, He commands fairness for the widow, the orphan, and the foreigner. And, that God can’t be called on to protect Taiwan until Taiwan has protected those who called.

Whether there will be armed conflict between Taiwan and China will depend on the Taiwanese democracy. Their government must make sweeping and instant changes to bring current what good things should have long happened to their foreigners from the nations they call on for help. If such sweeping justice is not given to foreigners in Taiwan by November 4 Taipei time, then Taiwan’s neglected past will be both neglected and newsworthy. In that event, Pacific Daily Times will dive into Taiwan’s ugly past to explain why Taiwan was weak enough that war from China was feasible in the first place. Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that.

So, will there be open war between Taiwan and China? That’s something not even God can decide, only Taiwan.

China

Beijing Winter Olympics 2022 should not be held in China, human rights groups say in letter to IOC // CNN

China Grabs Influence Over International Bodies // YouTube @ China Uncensored

US companies defy Trump’s demands to leave China // Financial Times

SMIC shares plunge 23% on fears the US could sanction China’s chipmaker // CNN

Another Chinese rocket falls near a school, creating toxic orange cloud // Ars Technica

Disney’s ‘Mulan’ catches backlash for filming in China’s Xinjiang Province amid human rights issues // Fox News

Taiwan

Taiwan claims ‘severe provocation’ after China military drills // Financial Times

In order to truly become Asia’s most liberal society, Taiwan needs to open up to foreigners // HKFP

Taiwan says China’s bullying of Czech politicians, firms creates antipathy // Taiwan News

China military show of force near Taiwan has experts asking if island could be the ‘next Hong Kong’ // Fox News

Prague mayor shares study abroad experience in Taiwan // Taiwan News

Eyeing China, Taiwan urges alliance against ‘aggressive actions’ // Yahoo News

Czech President Milos Zeman slams Taiwan visit as ‘boyish provocation’ as he seeks to calm China’s anger // SCMP

Japan

India

Indian Army Has Occupied ‘Critical Heights’ Including Finger 4 Overlooking PLA Positions – Reports // EurAsian Times

Military Faceoff

US Navy Announces ‘Major Breakthrough’ To Confront Beijing In The South China Sea // EurAsian Times

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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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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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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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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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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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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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Symphony

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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