China Adds Advanced Missiles to South China Sea Islands

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Pentagon plans major response to Chinese hegemony

China’s military has stepped up militarizing disputed islands in the South China Sea by deploying advanced missile systems on the Spratly islands, according to the Pentagon.

Defense officials disclosed to the Washington Free Beacon that the militarization has raised alarm bells about China’s creeping takeover of the strategic waterway used for some $5 trillion annually in international trade. Continue reading

Chinese researchers achieve 3D underwater acoustic carpet cloak first with ‘Black Panther’-like features

This is a model and photograph of the 3D underwater acoustic carpet cloak composed of over 700 steel strips. Image courtesy IOA.

 

Recently, a research team led by Prof. YANG Jun from the Institute of Acoustics (IOA) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences designed and fabricated a 3D underwater acoustic carpet cloak (UACC) using transformation acoustics. Like a shield, the carpet cloak is a material shell that can reflect waves as if the waves were reflecting off a planar surface. Hence, the cloaked target becomes undetectable to underwater detection instruments like sonar. Continue reading

Saudi-Led Coalition Begins Attack on Yemeni Port Held by Houthis

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Pro-government forces in Yemen began an assault Wednesday on the Yemeni port city of Hudaydah, which is held by Houthi rebels.

Strikes from a Saudi-led coalition began after Iranian-backed Houthi rebels ignored a deadline to withdraw by midnight local time Tuesday, BBC News reports. Continue reading

Iran poised to resume enrichment at deep Fordow facility

 

After Iran warned it will leave the nuclear accord unless benefits are forthcoming, an atomic energy official in Tehran said that uranium enrichment would resume at Fordow – if that happens. Continue reading

US struggles to counter Chinese maritime hegemony

US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has spoken out against China’s strategy of “intimidation and coercion” in the South China Sea, including the deployment of anti-ship missiles, surface-to-air missiles and electronic jammers, and, more recently, the landing of nuclear-capable bomber aircraft at Woody Island. There are, Mattis warned, “consequences to China ignoring the international community.”

But what consequences? Two successive US administrations – Barack Obama’s and now Donald Trump’s – have failed to push back credibly against China’s expansionism in the South China Sea, which has accelerated despite a 2016 international arbitral tribunal ruling invalidating its territorial claims there. Instead, the US has relied on rhetoric or symbolic actions. Continue reading

113 Mexican Politicians Have Been Killed Since September

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The number of Mexican politicians killed since September continues to rise.  Recently, a politician was killed while taking a selfie and another was shot in her home just off the coast of Cancun.

The New York Post reported that a Mexican politician who pledged to defy organized crime was shot dead as he posed for a picture with an admirer, according to reports and video. Congressional candidate Fernando Purón had just finished an election debate in the border city of Piedras Negras on Friday night when a woman holding a selfie stick asked him to take a picture, the Vanguardia reported. Continue reading

As the G-7 Implodes, SCO Meeting Confirms the New Century of Multipolarity

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The historical changes we are witnessing have never been so evident as in the last few days. The G7 summit highlighted the limits of the Atlantic alliance, while the SCO meeting opens up unprecedented possibilities for Eurasian integration.

At the G7 meeting in Canada in recent days, we witnessed unprecedented clashes between Trump and G7 leaders over the imposition of tariffs on trade. We must now conclude that the event has been relegated to irrelevance, as the G7 has heretofore derived its clout from speaking as one voice. Trump even went further, refusing to sign the final draft of the organization’s joint statement after Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau lashed out at Trump’s trade decisions. Trump showed how little he cares for his allies, leaving the summit a day early to arrive early for the meeting with Kim Jong-un in Singapore to make preparations for the long-awaited encounter between the two leaders. Continue reading

Treasury Hits Russian FSB for Underwater Reconnaissance of Internet Cables

An undersea fiber optic cable

An undersea fiber optic cable / Getty Images

 

Moscow plans to attack undersea cables in future conflict

The Treasury Department on Monday announced the imposition of economic sanctions against Russian entities engaged in targeting undersea internet cables and cyber spying inside critical U.S. infrastructures.

The department announced sanctions on five companies and three Russians linked to the Federal Security Service, the main Kremlin intelligence service, known as the FSB, that has been linked to Russian election meddling in 2016.

For the first time, Treasury revealed one of the sanctioned companies, Divetechnoservices, has worked with the FSB since 2007 to spy on underwater cables used to connect the internet around the world.

Russia has been active in tracking undersea communication cables which carry the bulk of the world’s telecommunications data,” the department said in announcing the sanctions. Continue reading

China Closes The Door On Vietnam’s Oil And Gas Ambitions

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As China tightens the noose over Vietnam’s ability to drill for oil and gas in its own UN-mandated 200-nautical mile Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), the country is turning to solar energy and other renewables to make up for lost ground.

Over the weekend, Singapore-based Sunseap Group broke ground on Vietnam’s largest solar farm, a 168-MW project in Ninh Thuan province. The $150 million project will become operational in June 2019 and supply more than 200 kWh of electricity to the national power grid annually, Sunseap said in a statement. Continue reading

As G7 feuds, Xi and Putin play up their own club

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The leaders of China and Russia Sunday praised the expansion of their regional security bloc at a summit which put on a show of unity in stark contrast to the acrimonious G7 meeting.

President Xi Jinping gave the leaders of Pakistan and India a “special welcome” to their first summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), in the eastern Chinese city of Qingdao, since their countries joined the group last year. Continue reading

Erdogan threat: Closing of Austria mosques may spark ‘war between the cross and crescent’

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan

 

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan slammed Austria’s populist government for its decision to shutter seven mosques and expel dozens of Turkish-funded imams.

“These measures taken by the Austrian prime minister are, I fear, leading the world towards a war between the cross and the crescent,” Erdogan said, according to a report by AFP. Continue reading

China hacked a Navy contractor and secured a trove of highly sensitive data on submarine warfare

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China’s sole operating aircraft carrier leaves Dalian in northeast China for sea trials last month. (Li Gang/Xinhua/AP)

 

Chinese government hackers have compromised the computers of a Navy contractor, stealing massive amounts of highly sensitive data related to undersea warfare — including secret plans to develop a supersonic anti-ship missile for use on U.S. submarines by 2020, according to American officials.

The breaches occurred in January and February, the officials said, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation. The hackers targeted a contractor who works for the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, a military organization headquartered in Newport, R.I., that conducts research and development for submarines and underwater weaponry.

The officials did not identify the contractor. Continue reading

Putin Says Lasers & Hypersonic Missiles In Service Are ‘Not All’. More Advanced Weapons To Be Announced Soon

 

On June 7, Russian President Vladimir Putin announce that all the recently unveiled state-of-the-art Russian weapons will be put into service in time addign [sic] that some are already adopted. The announcement was made during his annual Q&A session in Moscow.

“The hypersonic air-deployed Kinzhal system – the missile which can travel at 10 Mach speed – is already used by our troops in the South Federal District,” the president said. “A laser combat system is in service as well.” Continue reading

Pompeo in stark warning: We won’t let Iran develop a nuclear weapon

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“We’re watching reports that Iran plans to increase its enrichment capacity,” US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned on Thursday, June 7. “We won’t allow Iran to develop a nuclear weapon. Iran is aware of our resolve.”

Continue reading

Turkey, an Ally no More, Shouldn’t Get F-35s

In the case of Turkey, which clearly hasn’t been an ally of ours, they should indeed not be allowed to have F-35s. The problem with this, however, is that they will turn to China or Russia for their next generation fighters. What’s more, they will make it official that they are allied with China and Russia, and possibly even join the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

Should Turkey be allowed to purchase F-35s, they would likely pass the technology on to Russia and China, resulting in America’s newest deployed weaponry being compromised. America is in a catch-22: Give Turkey what it wants and lose ground in air supremacy via technology transfer, or lose an entire nation to the axis powers. The former is the lesser of two evils in the sense that it delays the issue for a while, whereas the latter only keeps feeding Turkish belligerency and continued backstabbing.

 

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Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met yesterday with his Turkish counterpart, who would have us believe Turkey is still a U.S. ally.  In fact, it is no more. Continue reading