Cadence of Conflict: Asia, February 8, 2016

Cadence of Conflict: Asia, February 8, 2016

TPP passed. That’s another Obama deal likely be reviewed by his soon-to-be successor. And that time is coming soon and certain. Not only are the United States proving their plurality of powers, so is the Pacific. Taiwan’s earthquake was a scary demonstration.

The 4:00am Kaohsiung 6.4 was indeed scary to locals at the many wreckage sites. But it was scarier for older structures, including political and economic. A strange selection of buildings fell while most were unharmed. Dishonesty is under investigation by no less than four prosecutors. And Taiwan’s spirit is stronger than it ever has been, something Beijing has never stared more clearly in the eye.

Controversial as TPP is, and as likely as it will be altered, it nails a big “No China Allowed” sign on the tree fort. With Taiwan proving its own, investigating bad dealings likely to implicate Mainland cronyism, further weakening the lame duck Nationalists even further… Even Obama’s “never let a good crisis go to waste” policy must be reviewed. Strength in the Pacific is forcing strength on the rim. The conflict is turning the tide.

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Prelude to Conflict: Asia, March 9, 2015

Prelude to Conflict: Asia, March 9, 2015

China was doing great. They had it “goin’ on”. Then, they made some choices over the last few years. Now, the Pacific region is foreseeably destabilizing. But the least of those concerns, and arguably the most overrated, is the situation in Hong Kong. Before we review the facts, read clearly; Hongkongers have nothing to fear. Here are the facts: China promised a kind of “contained autonomy” to Hong Kong as a precondition for Britain leaving the former colony.

As history repeated in Hong Kong as in the American British colonies, when Britain left, the former colony prospered. Now, in being consistent with old school Asian rhetoric, China is omitting key phrases during rhetoric that relates to its own promise. Beijing speaks more and more about their power over Hong Kong and less about Hong Kong’s power within its own territory.

The uninformed West, including westernized Hongkongers, misunderstood this old school Asian rhetoric as being a threat.  · · · →

Prelude to Conflict: Asia, February 23

Prelude to Conflict: Asia, February 23

Muslims wanted attention… They got it. Japan authorized millions in aid to fight terrorism. Myanmar calls on China to help them fight against terrorist attacks, ostensibly being launched from inside China. Beijing may not like being asked to turn their attention away from the great threat it feels from Taiwan. But, the terrorists in Myanmar don’t have yellow umbrellas. And President Xi is internationally considered to be almost as “great” as Chairman Mao himself! So, Myanmar may not get as much attention as Hong Kong. China is also being asked to help with Afghanistan.

Taiwan’s economic relationship with Beijing may have been an attempt to exploit Beijing’s greed, biding their time and getting rich off of China until unification with Taiwan would work in Taiwan’s interest and against China’s—and probably never happen at all. Perhaps Beijing will learn: There is more to international magnanimity than targeting the most peaceful and defenseless of Pacific islets.  · · · →

Prelude to Conflict: Asia, February 16

Prelude to Conflict: Asia, February 16

Propaganda turn of the tide. For years, Chinese have attended international circles, promulgated their talking points, and convinced others to unwittingly do the same. But, recent reports explain that having traffic lights and convincing drivers to stop at them are two different things.

China’s military has some technology, flaunts technology it does and doesn’t have, but lacks the first-world culture necessary to support its technology. The US has better technology, conceals the technology, “reveals” technology it wants China to know about, and certainly has the organized culture to make its technology work.

This week, China prepares to celebrate the Chinese New Year, which commemorates the creation of the KMT-Nationalist-controlled Chinese government 104 years ago, which is not the government founded by the Communist Party, but the government of Taiwan. Taiwan celebrates the same New Year that Beijing still recognizes, though China has not been reported to give homage to the 104 year old government that has been in exile since 1949.  · · · →