American Military Aircraft Targeted By Lasers in Pacific Ocean, U.S. Officials Say

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Officials said all the incidents occurred in and around the East China Sea, typically where the Chinese military or other Chinese civilians operate. An Air Force bomber, above, in August on a flight over Japan, the East China Sea and Korean Peninsula. Photo: Gerald Willis/U.S. Air Force/EPA/Shutterstock

 

U.S. officials wouldn’t definitively confirm Chinese personnel were behind laser incidents

WASHINGTON—Lasers have targeted pilots of American military aircraft operating over the western Pacific Ocean more than 20 times in recent months, U.S. officials say, following a series of similar incidents in which Pentagon officials said Chinese personnel used lasers against U.S. pilots in East Africa.

Officials said all of the incidents occurred in and around the East China Sea, typically where the Chinese military or other Chinese civilians operate. The laser signals directed at American aircraft appeared to be coming from fishing boats operating in the area and from shore, multiple officials said. 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

Mattis Announces Name Change for U.S. Pacific Command

Adm. Harry Harris, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joe Dunford, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and CNO Adm. John Richardson (L-R) attend a change of command ceremony / Getty Images

 

Secretary of Defense James Mattis announced Wednesday that the Pentagon was renaming U.S. Pacific Command to Indo-Pacific Command in order to better reflect regional priorities.

Mattis made the announcement at Joint Base Pearl Harbor Hickam on Wednesday during a change-of-command ceremony for the U.S. military’s oldest and largest geographic unified combatant command. Continue reading

Chinese influence in New Zealand threatens intelligence-sharing, says Canadian report

CSIS canada

 

The report, entitled China and the Age of Strategic Rivalry, was authored by experts at the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS). It contains a summary of views expressed by participants at an academic outreach workshop that was organized in Canada by the CSIS. In a section focusing on Chinese “interference in democratic systems”, the report suggests that, despite its small size, New Zealand is “valuable to China […] as a soft underbelly through which to access Five Eyes intelligence”. In recent years, claims the report, Beijing has adopted “an aggressive strategy” that has sought to co-opt political and economic elites in New Zealand as a means of influencing political decision making in the country. As part of that process, China seeks to gain advantages in trade and business negotiations, suppress negative views of China, facilitate espionage and control the views of the Chinese expatriate community in New Zealand, according to the report. Ultimately, Beijing seeks to “extricate New Zealand from […] its traditional [military and intelligence] partners]” as a means of asserting its regional and —eventually— global influence, the report concludes. Continue reading

WAR FOOTING: US Navy warships in ‘serious incident’ with China after sailing into disputed waters

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China has been busy building up power in the region in a bid to oust the dominance of the US Navy [Reuters]

 

It comes after experts warn the biggest Pacific land and sea grabs since the Japanese invasions of 1930s and 1940s are ‘almost complete’

CHINESE warships have confronted US Navy vessels today in what has been described as a “serious incident”.

The tense naval drama unfolded after the American warships sailed near a group of South China Sea islands claimed by China.

The presence of the US warships was slammed by Beijing just as President Donald Trump seeks to make peace with North Korea to avoid war breaking out.  Continue reading

China’s naval build-up is a threat to regional peace

China’s first home-built aircraft carrier has recently undergone sea trials and is expected to enter service as early as next year. The Asian power already has one carrier in active service, the Liaoning, a refurbished Cold War-era vessel bought from Ukraine and commissioned in 2012.

In an editorial on May 13 — the day the as-yet-unnamed 50,000-ton Type 001A vessel and the country’s first “combat” aircraft carrier headed out for its first sea trial — the Global Times said “China is gradually stepping into an era of dual aircraft carriers” and its “second aircraft carrier highlights the country’s major progress.”

But, the paper, an influential offspring of the People’s Daily, the mouthpiece of the ruling Communist Party, stated that “as a major power, China should have multiple aircraft carriers.”

The view that the rising superpower needs to build more aircraft carriers — at least six such vessels, with at least four of them being nuclear-powered — in the future is widely maintained by other Chinese state media outlets and analysts. Continue reading

China ‘Dream’ Is Global Hegemony

China's President Xi Jinping

China’s President Xi Jinping / Getty Images

 

U.S. urged to counter Beijing’s military, economic expansion

China’s large-scale military buildup, regional coercion, and economic aggression are part of plan for global domination, experts told Congress on Thursday.

The nuclear and conventional weapons buildup, militarization of islets in the South China Sea and global infrastructure investments aimed at controlling nations are signs Beijing has emerged as America’s most significant national security challenge, a panel of specialists told a hearing of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. Continue reading

AP: “Japan poised to flood Pacific with 1 Million tons of nuclear water contaminated by Fukushima” — Newsweek: “Experts want Japan to push a Million tons of radioactive water Into ocean” — Release could kill fishing industry (VIDEO)

 

AP, Nov 26, 2017: Japan is poised to flood the Pacific with one million tons of nuclear water contaminated by the Fukushima power plant… The Japanese government is being urged by experts to gradually release radioactive water in to the Pacific Ocean… The water is stored on site in around 900 large and densely packed tanks and could spill should another major disaster strike. The government has been urged to release the water into the ocean… Local fishermen are extremely hesitant to this solution… Fumio Haga, a drag-net fisherman, said: ‘People would shun Fukushima fish again as soon as the water is released.’… Continue reading

Hidden Fukushima nuclear waste being released into ocean — ‘Surprisingly’ high levels of radiation now detected along Pacific coast and in groundwater far from reactors — Expert: No one expected this — “Alarming example of how radiation has spread”

Newsweek, Oct 4, 2017 (emphasis added): Radiation From Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Discovered in Sand and Groundwater 60 Miles Away… the beach groundwater is even 10 times more radioactive than the ocean directly next to the Fukushima plant.

Gizmodo, Oct 4, 2017: Fukushima’s Radioactive Waste Is Leaking From an Unexpected Source— A new and unexpected source of radioactive material left over from the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster has been found up to 60 miles away along coastlines… The discovery shows that damaged nuclear reactors are capable of spreading radiation far from the meltdown site, and in some surprising ways. Continue reading

Former CIA Chief Warns of N. Korea’s Other Nuclear Weapon

This is why Kim Jong-un continues provoking America. Every day there are two North Korean EMP satellites passing over America, twice a day. He’s waiting for a military response. He’s hoping for a reason. Trump is left with a very dangerous position thanks to the Obama, Bush and Clinton administrations who did nothing before it was too late. Kim Jong-un knows he’ll lose in a war against America but he only has to press a button before he dies. Then it’s bye bye for America which will be reset to the stone age.

For the record, this is the first time ever someone from the CIA at his level has admitted (publicly) there are two North Korean EMP satellites circling the globe.

 

FILE - Former CIA Director James Woolsey testifies on Capitol Hill, Aug. 16, 2004, in Washington.

FILE – Former CIA Director James Woolsey testifies on Capitol Hill, Aug. 16, 2004, in Washington.

 

Advances in North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs are pushing the international community to respond with increasingly strict sets of sanctions, with the latest round, passed this week, capping the country’s oil imports while banning its lucrative textile exports.

Despite the pressure, the Kim Jong Un regime continues to pursue the development of a nuclear-tipped intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) that could strike the continental United States, among other targets. Continue reading

Russia Deploys Nuclear-Capable Bombers Near Korea

Russian TU-95 bomber

 

With the U.S. periodically sending the occasional sortie of B1 bombers, accompanied by South Korean fighters, over the Korean peninsula to simulate what a (very fast) war with Pyongyang would look like, the airspace over the biggest geopolitical hotspot in the world today just got a little hotter after Russia deployed nuclear-capable strategic bombers over the Pacific Ocean, the Sea of Japan, the Yellow Sea and the East China Sea, prompting Japan and South Korea to scramble jets to escort them, Reuters reported. Continue reading

Fury at Fukushima: Over 1 Billion pounds of nuclear waste “will be dumped into sea” — Top Official: “The decision has already been made” — “The solution is to pour the radioactive liquid into the ocean” — Toxic radioactive water to cause devastation

Kyodo, Jul 14, 2017 (emphasis added): Fukushima’s tritiated water to be dumped into sea, Tepco chief says — Despite the objections of local fishermen, the tritium-tainted water stored at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant will be dumped into the sea, a top official at Tokyo Electric says. “The decision has already been made,” Takashi Kawamura, chairman of Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc., said in a recent interview with the media… As of July 6, about 777,000 tons were stored [1.54 billion pounds]… Kawamura’s remarks are the first by the utility’s management on the sensitive matter… Continue reading

‘Anything is better than the status quo’: Guam eyes end to American colonial rule

A beach on Guam. Photo: AFP

 

As Guam prepares to celebrate Liberation Day this week, political leaders on the Pacific island say it is time to decide whether to remain a US colony or become an independent nation.

Debate about independence has raged for decades but legal complications mean plans to take the issue to a vote have stalled several times.

Former senator Eddie Duenas said a self-rule plebiscite was long overdue and should be held during a gubernatorial election expected next year.

“We have been driving but we don’t know where we’re driving to and how far we will go,” he told a recent meeting of Guam’s decolonisation commission in the capital Hagatna. Continue reading

Massive Shark Die-Off on California Coast is Alarming Researchers

 

Mass marine animal die-offs have become regular news in recent years, especially along the western coast of the America’s where it is quite common to hear of pods of whales or other animals mysteriously perishing in great numbers.

Most recently along the coast of California, primarily around the San Francisco Bay area, an alarming number of sharks are dying, and officials are at a loss as to why. For the past three months, thousands of dead leopard sharks have been washing up on shores in the bay, and their decomposing bodies may be making the problem worse. Continue reading

Report: North Korean EMP attack would devastate Hawaii

Hawaii is home to 11 military bases and U.S. Pacific Command’s HQ.

 

Defense analysts said Hawaii could be targeted by North Korea, which continues to develop its nuclear and intercontinental ballistic missile capabilities, Military.com reported on May 13.

Hawaii is seen as a desirable target as it is headquarters for U.S. Pacific Command and has 11 military bases, including Pearl Harbor, said Dean Cheng, senior research fellow with the Asian Studies Center at the Heritage Foundation. Continue reading