Friday, 25 September 2015

US-China Relations: The Pentagon vs. High Tech

from Boiling Frogs Post: Step by step, Washington is inexorably setting up a major provocation against China. Until now, the Obama regime tightened a military encirclement of China, expanding its armed forces agreements with Japan, the Philippines and Australia. In addition, it has promoted the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), a regional trade agreement which openly excludes China.

Obama has ordered a major naval build-up in the South China Sea and embarked on extensive cyber-espionage of Chinese industries and the government via major US high-tech companies, as revealed by Edward Snowden in his release of confidential NSA document.

As President Xi Jinping prepares for his first US visit as China’s leader on September 25, with the aim of extending economic ties between Chinese and US business (especially with the high tech corporations in Seattle and Silicon Valley), the Obama regime has threatened to impose a series of punitive sanctions against Chinese companies and individuals for ‘cyber-espionage’, essentially undermining the purpose of his trip.

Characterizing the Chinese as ‘cyber-thieves’ and imposing sanctions on Chinese businesses on the eve of Xi’s visit will be justifiably seen as a deliberate humiliation and a provocation, designed to treat China as a mere vassal state of Washington.

This will force the Chinese government to retaliate on behalf of Chinese businesses – and President Xi is fully capable of imposing retaliatory sanctions against multi-billion dollar high tech US corporations, which had been flourishing – up to now – in China.

China strongly dissatisfied with Japan's new defense white paper

from China has voiced strong discontent and firm opposition over Japan's annual defense white paper, saying the paper deliberately plays up the so-called "China military threat".

The Japanese cabinet on Tuesday (15th September) approved the defense white paper for 2015, in which it launched multiple accusations against China.

In the opening of the 400-plus page document, Japan describes the security environment surrounding the country as having become increasingly severe, highlighting China's supposed military build-up, and activities by China in the East China Sea and South China Sea.

In response to Japan's criticism, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said the new defense white paper of Japan once again ignores facts, makes irresponsible remarks on China's normal military growth and maritime activities, deliberately plays up the "China threat" and stirs up tensions.

In a press release, Lu stressed that China is committed to a path of peaceful development and national defense policy that is defensive in nature.

China's strategic intentions are transparent, he said, noting China's development of defense capacity is justified and poses no threat to any other country.

He said China is devoted to promoting China-Japan friendship and developing bilateral ties based on the four political documents signed by China and Japan.

He urged Japan to stop misleading the Japanese people or installing barriers for the improvement of bilateral ties.

China to host ASEAN defence ministers amid South China Sea tensions

from Channel News Asia: China said on Thursday it will host defence ministers from the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) next month, amid tension between some of its members and China over the disputed South China Sea.

The Oct. 15-16 informal summit will take place in Beijing and China has invited the defence ministers of all 10 members, Chinese Defence Ministry spokesman Wu Qian told a regular monthly news briefing.

Chinese Defence Minister Chang Wanquan will have a "deep exchange of views" with participants, he added, without elaborating.

China has overlapping claims with Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Taiwan and Brunei in the South China Sea, through which US$5 trillion in ship-borne trade passes every year.

China's increasingly assertive moves to press its sovereignty claims have rattled its neighbours and aroused concern in the United States, though China says it has no hostile intent.


Seoul to Create Special Unit to Attack North Korea Nuke, Missile Assets

from Asia News Network: South Korea is seeking to create a special unit in the Army tasked with destroying North Korea’s nuclear weapons, long-range missiles and other strategic assets should an emergency break out, military officials said Wednesday.

The brigade-level organization will be installed within the Army’s Special Warfare Command, with its primary mission being to “strike the enemy’s core strategic targets,” the command stated in a report submitted to the National Assembly’s defense committee for a parliamentary audit.

“(The plan) is intended for operations in North Korea,” Commander Lt. Gen. Chang Kyung-suk said during the audit at the Army headquarters in the Gyeryongdae military compound in South Chungcheong Province.

“Work is underway to transform one of the six brigades forming the special forces into a unit that will run independent operations.”

While operable in the North on its own, the envisioned brigade may engage in joint actions with the US such as for combat service support that requires infiltration tools, Chang noted.

The command also said in the report that it was pushing to set up a special aviation unit to boost independent infiltration capabilities by upgrading its aircraft and deploying high altitude infiltration equipment.

Australian Government's 'Anti-Radicalisation Kit' Links Green Activism and Alternative Music to Terrorism

from Environmentalists and teachers are up in arms over a new Federal Government anti-radicalisation kit that links green activism and "alternative music" to terrorism.

The Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Terrorism Michael Keenan launched the Radicalisation Awareness Kit in the form of a 32-page booklet on Monday.

Through a series of examples and fictitious case studies, the booklet aims to illustrate the circumstances which can lead young people to become radicalised.

The case study in the 'Violent Extremism' section tells the story of a girl called 'Karen' who becomes involved in the "alternative music scene, student politics and left-wing activism" when she leaves home.

'Karen' ends up sabotaging logging machinery and being arrested "on numerous occasions" while becoming "totally cut off from her family".

Jonathan La Nauze from the Australian Conservation Foundation said the booklet was misleading and potentially dangerous. "This is very disappointing," he said.

"It sounds like something that's been dreamt up in the cigar room of the Institute of Public Affairs.

There's no resemblance to the way that people in Australia feel about their environment and the need to stand up to protect it.

Saturday, 19 September 2015

Japan Passes Law Allowing Troops To Fight Abroad | September 18, 2015: Upper house passes law allowing troops to fight on foreign soil for first time since World War II, despite protests.

Japan’s parliament has passed a law allowing its military to fight on foreign soil for the the first time since World War II.

The upper house of the Japanese parliament passed the law Saturday despite fierce attempts by opposition politicians to block the move.

The approval makes the legislation into law, loosening post-World War II constraints on the use of force by the military to its own self-defence only.

The legislation, passed by the more powerful lower house in July, sparked sizeable protests and debate about whether the nation should shift away from its pacifist ways to face growing security challenges.

The motion, backed by Shinzo Abe’s ruling coalition, passed following days of heated debate that at times descended into scuffles and shouting matches between parliament members.

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Australia To Penalize Parents Who Don't Vaccinate Children

from The Australian government said on Wednesday that it will pass a law that would withhold child care and other payments from families that fail to immunize their children.

The "No Jab, No Pay Bill" introduced to Parliament would also remove a category of "conscientious objector" that allowed parents to remain eligible for full government benefits despite not immunizing their children.

"The choice made by some families not to vaccinate their children is not supported by public policy or medical research, nor should such action be supported by taxpayers in the form of family payments," Social Services Minister Scott Morrison told Parliament.

Families would lose up to 15,000 Australian dollars ($11,000) per child per year in tax and child care benefits from Jan. 1, 2016, unless their children are vaccinated.

Exemptions would apply only for valid medical reasons.

The legislation is likely to be passed by Parliament without any amendments. Public reaction to the proposed change has been overwhelmingly positive.

While 97 percent of Australian families that claim tax benefits for their offspring are vaccinated, the number of children under 7 years old who are not vaccinated because their parents are objectors has increased by more than 24,000 over the past decade to 39,000, the government said.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Japanese Stage Large Rally To Protest Controversial Security Bills

from Press TV: Tens of thousands of people have marched on Japan’s parliament in protest at the potential approval of a set of controversial security bills that the protesters say will put the country on the warpath.

According to reports, some 45,000 people attended the massive demonstration outside the National Diet, Japan’s parliament, in the capital, Tokyo, with many of the protesters holding up placards reading “No war” and “Scrap war legislation.”

The anti-war protesters also called on Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to step down.

Barricades were set up to block the crowd from proceeding, leading to some scuffles, which caused the security forces to eventually take them down.

From post-war pacifism to war itself?

The proposed legislation would allow Japan’s army, the so-called Self-Defense Forces, to be deployed abroad in combat operations for the first time since World War II. It would enable the country to use its troops to protect allies such as the United States even if there is no direct threat to Japan.

Critics say the bills would alter Japan’s pacifist constitutional status forever.

“Abe’s government is currently not listening to the voices of the people, and many things are being pulled back to the past in a bad way, so I can’t keep quiet, So I came here because I don’t want my kids or grandkids to be in a situation like that of during war or before war,” said 69-year-old protester Yasuko Yanagihara.

Obama’s Pacific Trade Deal Trails Behind China’s Development Vision

from | 10 July 2015: Often touted as the centerpiece of the Obama administration’s re-engagement with Asia, a close vote in the US Senate has brought the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) a major step closer to becoming law. Facing significant opposition within his own party, the US president has secured fast-track negotiating authority, limiting Congress’s constitutional authority to regulate the contents of the trade accord.

Though the US Congress and American public will have an opportunity to review the deal before it is voted on, fast-track passage procedure reduces time for debate and prohibits amendments to the proposed legislation, limiting Congress to passing an up-or-down vote on the deal. Negotiated behind closed doors and drafted under tremendous secrecy for nearly a decade, elected representatives have thus far had limited access to the draft text.

The negotiations, intended to eventually create a multilateral trade and foreign investment agreement, involve Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam. Comprising some 40 percent of the world’s economy, the trade pact represents Washington’s response to the rising influence of China, which is not a participant, despite being the region’s largest economy and the largest trading partner of Asia-Pacific economies.

Bringing together a diverse grouping of culturally and economically disparate countries, the pact aims to enforce a common regulatory framework that governs rules for tariffs and trade disputes, patents and intellectual property, banking, foreign investment and more. The deal is widely seen as being representative of Washington’s long-term commitment to the Asia-Pacific region.

Read the full story on New Eastern Outlook

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Deal With the Devil: How the Global Elite Re-colonized China

via GRTV and The Corbett Report: The "Chinese dragon" of the last two decades may be faltering but it is still hailed by many as an economic miracle. Far from a great advance for Chinese workers, however, it is the direct result of a consolidation of power in the hands of a small clique of powerful families, families that have actively collaborated with Western financial oligarchs.