Neighbors wary as China’s PLA modernizes, builds capability

Under Chinese President Xi Jinping, the People’s Liberation Army is undergoing massive changes as it is reorganized, resized and mobilized. On one hand, the PLA is also getting a bigger role in China’s strategic and foreign-policy outreach. On the other hand, it is shedding weight and becoming a leaner and more information-driven army.

These far-reaching changes will have implications for the region, as neighbors India, Japan and Vietnam and powers like the US and Australia watch closely. Continue reading

Australian spy agency says it is facing ‘unprecedented’ espionage threat

 

The primary intelligence agency of Australia says its resources are overextended as the country faces “espionage and foreign interference [of an] unprecedented” scale. In its annual report to the Australian houses of parliament, which was produced on Tuesday, the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) says it lacks resources to counter “harmful espionage” and “malicious activity” against the country. The unclassified report is published every year as a summary of a much longer classified report, which is shared with senior government officials and senior civil servants. It is endorsed by ASIO Director Duncan Lewis, who serves as Australia’s Director-General of Security. Continue reading

Russia’s on the Way Back

Yellen and Nabiullina

 

Russia is poised to break out of its oil-related slump and become one of the best performing emerging markets economies in the years ahead. This sleeping giant is breaking its dependence on oil prices and embraces diversified growth.

When you hear the name “Russia” you probably run for cover. Russia has been the subject of nearly continuous media coverage bordering on frenzy since the election of Donald Trump last November. Continue reading

The Rise of China as a Superpower

Shanghai, China (ISTOCK.COM/LIUFUYU)

 

 

It is one of the most impressive economic and political miracles in modern times. And it isn’t over yet.

China is a sovereign state with a population of over 1.3 billion people. The nation possesses the world’s largest economy by some measurements, the world’s largest population and the fourth-largest territory.

These are the building blocks of a superpower. While the world anticipates China gaining superpower status, analysts debate over when and whether its rise will be peaceful.

The Trumpet forecasts that China will continue to grow as a formidable power, combining its strength with Russia. Further, we forecast that it will play a major role in waging economic war that will devastate America.

Where do these forecasts come from? Continue reading

Juncker calls for united EU under one leader

Juncker wants a single EU president who campaigns in the 2019 elections (Photo: European Commission)

 

European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker outlined his post-Brexit vision for a confident EU in his state of the union address on Wednesday (14 September), speaking of a Europe that has bounced back from the economic downturn and regained the political ground from populists and eurosceptics.

Juncker, in his second to last state of the union speech, has argued for a more united and effective EU that is based on freedom, equality and the rule of law, and signalled that he wants all EU countries to become full eurozone and Schengen area members by 2019 – except those with opt-outs. Continue reading

Australian parliament reviews use of Chinese-made cell phones

One should also be aware and on guard with regards to Huawei and their connections to the CCP and PLA.

 

ZTE Corporation

 

The Parliament of Australia is reportedly reviewing the use of cell phones built by a Chinese manufacturer, after an Australian news agency expressed concerns about the manufacturer’s links with the Chinese military. The cell phone in question is the popular Telstra Tough T55 handset. It is made available to Australian parliamentarians though the Information, Communications and Technology (ICT) unit of the Department of Parliamentary Services (DST). Any parliamentarian or worker in Australia’s Parliament House can order the device through the Parliament’s ICT website. According to data provided by the DST, 90 Telstra Tough T55 cell phones have been ordered through the ICT in the current financial year. Continue reading

Adrift and Unready for War: Crisis in the U.S. Seventh Fleet

Photo credit: U.S. Navy Pacific Fleet/Aircrewman Tactical Helicopter 3rd Class Geoffrey Trudell

 

The United States Navy’s Seventh Fleet is entering a tough period of scrutiny following two high profile and deadly warship collisions, a vessel running aground, and a less publicized collision all within a year. Despite this unfortunate recent publicity, this is not a new state of affairs. WESTPAC has long served as the tip of the spear for the U.S’ warfighting readiness, and they have also been plagued with a history of avoidable errors. As the Asia-Pacific region remains a major center of geopolitical tension for the U.S, the Navy must solve these issues or find itself facing real crises with significantly degraded capacity.

While Seventh Fleet has found itself the focus of intense criticism in recent months, the reality is that the root causes for these incidents stem from three separate areas; Training, Operations, and Culture. Continue reading

Struggle over the Arctic

BERLIN (Own report) – According to a German military officer, China’s economic activities in Greenland and Iceland could cause future wars. If the People’s Republic should “establish” itself in the Arctic – as a “great power alien to the region” – this would “instigate military conflicts,” according to a recent semi-official publication. To prove his point, the author, a reserve officer of the Bundeswehr, refers to China’s mining investments in Greenland and Beijing’s alleged plans to settle systematically Chinese specialists in the region. The “ethnic form of influence” expressed in this plan and the People’s Republic’s commitment to protect the “sovereign rights of the indigenous population” constitute a “declaration of war on the West,” the author writes. With regard to Iceland, the officer particularly criticizes the construction of a harbor in the Northeast of the island state, which is allegedly financed by a Chinese company. If the People’s Republic is thus creating a “regional central hub” for raw materials extracted from the Arctic, it would be in “favorable geopolitical starting blocks” vis-à-vis the “European Atlantic states,” the author explains, speaking already of a “gradual Chinese land grab” at the polar circle.

Continue reading

Australia concerned about Chinese firm’s involvement in undersea cable project

 

Australia has expressed concern about a plan by a Chinese telecommunications company to provide high-speed Internet to the Solomon Islands, a small Pacific island nation with which Australia shares Internet resources. The company, Huawei Technologies, a private Chinese venture, is one of the world’s leading telecommunications hardware manufacturers. In recent years, however, it has come under scrutiny by Western intelligence agencies, who view it as being too close to the Communist Party of China. Continue reading

What Would A U.S. Civil War Look Like?

Trump election

 

Yes, there is a civil war looming in the United States.

But it will look little like the orderly pattern of descent which spiraled into the conflict of 1861-65. It will appear more like the Yugoslavia break-up, or the Russian and Chinese civil wars of the 20th Century.

It will appear as an evolving chaos.

And the next US civil war, though it yet may be arrested to a degree by the formal hand of centralized gov-ernment, will destabilize many other nation-states, including the People’s Republic of China (PRC).

Continue reading

War on Cash: A “Wider Cultural Change Agenda”

 

A certain Michael Andrew is the former global director of accounting at KPMG. He’s also the present generalissimo of Australia’s Black Economy Taskforce.

The stated mission of this “taskforce” sets it among the angels — to combat terrorism, narcotics, tax dodging.

Cash is of course the coin of these evil realms. Continue reading

Australia Takes On Qatar For Top LNG Producer Status

LNG

 

Australia this week moved a step closer to becoming a real problem for Qatar on the LNG market, after the second floating production, storage, and offloading vessel for the Ichthys gas field reached its destination.

The Ichthys Venturer joins the Ichthys Explorer at the field operated by Japan’s Inpex, with the first LNG shipment from the field scheduled for next spring.

The Venturer has a capacity of 1.12 million barrels of gas condensate and will process, stabilize, and store condensate it will receive from the other FPSO, and then load it on tankers. Continue reading

Japan’s Shifting Power Alliances

 

I’ve just wrapped up a long trip to Japan. And I’ve taken away one lesson from all of my conversations, speeches and research: The rise of nationalism in the U.S. will cause massive shifts in global trade alliances.

One of the main beneficiaries will be Japan. Now, Japan might not be on your radar, day-to-day, but it’s about to play a very important role in the world of Donald Trump.

Here’s what I mean… Continue reading

Japan wants a massive trade deal without the US — but these countries stand in its way

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe next to a map of the original Trans-Pacific Partnership participating countries. [TOSHIFUMI KITAMURA / AFP / Getty Images]

 

  • Negotiators from the 11 remaining TPP countries are holding talks this week on how to ink a deal without Washington, but internal divisions are a key obstacle
  • Vietnam and Malaysia, in particular, are looking to re-open discussions on certain provisions, complicating Japan’s desire to cement an agreement

As the 11 remaining Trans-Pacific Partnership countries continue talks without Washington this week, certain member states now need convincing to stay on board with the massive trade deal. Continue reading

They Want to Put Nano-Chips into Currency So they can track every note

 

Believe it or not, Australia has a Black Economy Taskforce that hunts down citizens in every possible way. They look at where they send their kids to school and then inquire at the school who pays the bills and how. They are using technology to hack people’s phones of anyone suspected of hiding money to get all their messages and emails as well as where they call overseas. Their own website says: Continue reading