How China wins the South China Sea war without firing a shot

China is engaged in a broad-ranging information warfare campaign as part of a covert effort to take control of the South China Sea — in the words of ancient strategist Sun Tzu, without firing a shot.

The Chinese cyber attacks have been carried out extensively on regional states along with political influence operations designed to falsely convince the international community that the waters of the sea are and have been China’s sovereign maritime territory.

James Clapper, the US director of national intelligence, told a Senate hearing last week that aggressive Chinese cyber attacks were continuing. ”China continues to succeed in conducting cyber espionage against the US government, our allies, and US companies,” he said. Continue reading

Europe mulls a pivot to ASEAN

Most of EU businesses are ready to increase trade and investment in the ASEAN space over the next five years, with Malaysia and Indonesia to emerge as the most attractive markets. European manufacturers are also pushing for the conclusion of a free trade agreement between the EU and ASEAN to eliminate structural disadvantagesThe EU views ASEAN as a viable alternative to China.

The decline in investments flowing from the European Union (EU) member states to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) should not deceive. As witnessed by a recent survey, European companies look in prospect more favorably to the Southeast Asian market than to China’s. Continue reading

China aims for deeper regional military ties in bid for stability in South China Sea

Beijing vows closer defence cooperation with Malaysia, Myanmar and Thailand ahead of court ruling that could drive wedge into Asean bloc

China has vowed to beef up military cooperation with several Southeast Asian nations after the US announced it was lifting a decades-old ban on the sale of lethal military equipment to Vietnam.

The pledges of a deeper partnership with Malaysia, Myanmar and Thailand also came amid escalating regional tensions over territorial claims in the South China Sea and ahead of an international court ruling that could potentially drive a wedge among Asean members.

Continue reading

Putin Believes Creation of ASEAN-EEU Free Trade Zone Possible

SOCHI (Sputnik) — Earlier in the day, Russian Economic Development Minister Alexei Ulyukayev said the creation of an ASEAN-EEU free trade zone was not only possible, but “a preferred format.”

Continue reading

China preparing to deploy troops rapidly

Every day, Chinese trains take millions of people to various stops around the country. Last year, the government stopped the commuting for a day along one stretch so their troops could conduct exercises designed to ship the People’s Liberation Army to the border via high-speed train, according to National Interest.

Continue reading

Shifting Tides of Military Power in the South China Sea

A 2010 article that foretold what was to come and now is here:

 

Is U.S. naval power in the South China Sea the unstoppable force it once was?

Thirsting for the oil in the waters that break upon China’s shores, Beijing has recently intensified its claim to the entire 1.3 million square miles of the South China Sea. Since China’s assertion competes with claims by the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan, it has prompted a pledge from the U.S. for increased involvement in the disputes to guarantee free trade and navigation throughout the region. But a Wall Street Journal article about recent military trends in the South Pacific region suggests that Washington’s pledge is insufficiently backed, and more so every month.

Continue reading

China launches charm offensive for first overseas naval base

BEIJING (Reuters) – China has launched an unusual charm offensive to explain its first overseas naval base in Djibouti, seeking to assuage global concerns about military expansionism by portraying the move as Beijing’s contribution to regional security and development.

China has repeatedly said it does not seek a U.S.-style “hegemony” by extending its military reach, including through bases abroad.

Now that it appears it may be doing precisely that, the government has been quietly briefing on its rationale for the Djibouti base and using state media to address fears of China’s aims. Continue reading

PLA’s cyber attack unit linked to S. China Sea takeover campaign

The new cyber unit of People’s Liberation Army (PLA) was identified as Unit 78020 and is based in Kunming, in Yunnan Province, according to a report by security correspondent Bill Gertz and ThreatConnect.com.

Continue reading

Contain China

NEW DELHI/COLOMBO/BERLIN (Own report) – Today, Tuesday, German Minister of Defense Ursula von der Leyen will begin several days of talks in New Delhi on questions of military and arms policies. India’s new armament projects are the immediate reason for von der Leyen’s visit. India wants, among other things, to construct German submarines under license, and Berlin is seeking a more intensified cooperation in foreign and military policy. This visit will prepare numerous agreements, within the framework of the German-Indian government consultations, scheduled for October. It takes place in the context of India’s efforts to roll back China’s influence in the Indian Ocean – an effort Berlin supports. Sri Lanka is a current point of contention of this power struggle. Over the past few years, this strategically important island nation has begun to ally itself closely with Beijing. To avoid a too strong dependency on China, the new Sri Lankan government – in office since January – is seeking to reduce its ties to China and strengthen relations to the West. Last week, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Germany’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, welcomed his Sri Lankan counterpart in Berlin, to reinforce Germany’s position in Sri Lanka – in light of the power struggle with Beijing.

Continue reading

This New Project Changes The Global Oil Market

ChinaMyanmarPipeline

 

We saw one of the most significant shifts in a long while for energy markets last week. With a key pipeline opening that will radically change global flows of crude oil.

The project in question is the China-Myanmar oil pipeline. Which Chinese state media said on Thursday has now opened for test runs. Continue reading

Chinese ‘Silk Road’ Initiative to Diminish US Role in Eurasian Region

Was America tricked and swindled out of building this for Eurasia? For more information on how the U.S. originally supported this initiative, see HERE and HERE.

 

MOSCOW (Sputnik), Ekaterina Blinova — By involving India and Russia in its “One Belt, One Road” project, China has dealt a final blow to ambitious New Silk Road initiative, launched by the United States in 2011.

“Since China’s “One Belt and One Road” strategy, which refers to the Silk Road economic belt and the 21st century maritime Silk Road, was initiated at the end of 2013, significant progress has been made and increasing support has been garnered from the international community,” the Global Times, a Chinese English-language media outlet noted. Continue reading

The West under Pressure

Give it time. Something has to fill the void for NATO which is showing no spine or competence. Germany, the powerhouse of Europe, and its upcoming Fourth Reich won’t sit idly and wait for Russia and China to rise and run the planet after America’s suicidal downfall. The European Army (see also HERE) is coming and an upcoming United States of Europe in the making will be the economic and political backbone.

BERLIN/WASHINGTON (Own report) – Transatlantic circles are warning against a global “disengagement” by the West and is calling for a renewed cohesiveness between NATO countries under US leadership. The fact that Russia was able to take over the Crimea and that China can obstinately maintain its position in disputes over several islands and groups of islands in Eastern Asia, is also a consequence of weak Western leadership, according to the “German Marshall Fund of the United States” (GMF). The West must draw lessons from the current “global disorder.” However, German experts demonstrate a bit more restraint in their appraisals. According to the latest edition of a German military journal, the current intra-Western tensions have primarily arisen from the fact that in the course of its development the EU has “inevitably become a competitor to NATO.” It cannot be excluded that this could cause a serious “rupture in transatlantic relations” and that NATO could even disintegrate into conflicts. However, as long as the EU does not have strong military power, it should “grit its teeth and continue to flexibly attempt to benefit from US capabilities.” This must also be seen in the context of the fact that western hegemony no longer seems assured. Moscow has announced its intentions to carry out joint maneuvers with China in the Mediterranean, thus breaching another western hegemonic privilege. Continue reading

Strategic alliance with India, Myanmar to exploit sea resources mooted

C Raja Mohan, who is the head of strategic studies and distinguished fellow at the Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi, recently at a lecture in Dhaka had mooted the idea to form a trilateral group.

On Tuesday at a roundtable on ‘blue economy’, the idea also came up from the private sector who believed Bangladesh should have a “strategic partnership alliance” with India and Myanmar to exploit sea resources.

The suggestion came up as Bangladesh resolved the maritime dispute with the two neighbours “peacefully”.

Dhaka established its sovereign rights on more than 118,000 sq kms of territorial sea, 200 nautical miles (NM) of exclusive economic zone and 354 NM continental shelves from the Chittagong coast through international courts. Continue reading

China poised to pass US as world’s leading economic power this year

The US is on the brink of losing its status as the world’s largest economy, and is likely to slip behind China this year, sooner than widely anticipated, according to the world’s leading statistical agencies.

The US has been the global leader since overtaking the UK in 1872. Most economists previously thought China would pull ahead in 2019.

The figures, compiled by the International Comparison Program hosted by the World Bank, are the most authoritative estimates of what money can buy in different countries and are used by most public and private sector organisations, such as the International Monetary Fund. This is the first time they have been updated since 2005. Continue reading

Great powers manoeuvre in Asia

Consider the territorial disputes roiling the Indian Ocean and other East Asian regions, sparked by China’s repeated _ and increasingly assertive _ efforts to claim sovereignty over vast maritime areas. As China’s incursions reignite long-smouldering disagreements and threaten to destabile [sic] the regional status quo, countries throughout Asia are reconsidering their strategic positions.

For example, the Philippines is revamping its security strategy by enhancing cooperation with the United States _ China’s counterweight in the region _ only two decades after it closed two major American military installations, the naval base at Subic Bay and Clark Air Base. Vietnam, too, has strengthened its ties with the US. And, after decades of absence, America has resumed training programmes for Indonesia’s military. Continue reading