Largest Chinese Naval Drill “In 600 Years” Begins: Live-Fire Exercise In Taiwan Strait

Lets not forget this quote, which can also be found on the quotes page:

The central committee believes, as long as we resolve the United States problem at one blow, our domestic problems will all be readily solved. Therefore, our military battle preparation appears to aim at Taiwan, but in fact is aimed at the United States, and the preparation is far beyond the scope of attacking aircraft carriers or satellites.

– Chi Haotian, Minster of Defense and vice-chairman of China’s Central Military Commission

 

 

Last week, the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) assembled all of its most advanced warships, aircraft, and nuclear submarines for a massive show of force in the South China Sea. We explained, how the 3-day war drill from April 10 through 13 would be held in the waters south of China’s Hainan Island.

Asia Times estimates some 10,000 People’s Liberation Army airmen, marines and sailors boarded 48 naval warships and 76 aircraft to show their loyalty and devotion to President Xi Jinping, who was greeted on a destroyer “by a resounding chorus of platitudes from soldiers.” Continue reading

The Years of Terror (I)

LONDON/BERLIN/RIYADH (Own report) – With its continued worldwide support for Salafis, Germany’s close partner, Saudi Arabia, is relentlessly fertilizing the soil for the growth of jihadi terror, according to the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP). “The consequences of Saudi Arabia’s support for Salafism are catastrophic,” the SWP concludes in light of IS/Daesh activities in Europe. British experts are also sharply criticizing cooperation with Riyadh. If one seriously wants to combat jihadi terror, one “should start by stopping the mass export of Wahhabism’s intolerance and hatred from Saudi Arabia,” an insider recommends. This is, however, countered by Germany, other European powers and North America’s relentless cooperation with the Saudi ruling clan. Just a few weeks ago, Chancellor Angela Merkel launched regular military cooperation with the Saudi armed forces. Out of consideration for Riyadh, the British government has been withholding an investigation, showing the – presumably Saudi – financiers of British jihadis. This had been made known only three days before the latest terror attack in London.

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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.

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Sochi ASEAN summit: Russia eyes economic expansion in SE Asia

MOSCOW–Russia moved to forge stronger ties with the 10-nation Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) last week, pledging to focus on economy rather than geopolitical alliances.

Local observers preferred to highlight geopolitical aspects of the rapprochement between Russia and Southeast Asia. Russian media outlets, including Sputnik International, noted that Russia looked to the East, seeking new allies among US partners in Asia.

The Russian Black Sea resort city of Sochi hosted the Russia-ASEAN summit on May 19-20. The confab marked the 20th anniversary of the partnership. Russian President Vladimir Putin welcomed Southeast Asian leaders amid Moscow’s continued disagreements with the West. Continue reading

Russian Navy is Returning to Cam Ranh Bay

Vietnamese Ambassador to Russia Nguyen Thanh Sean says that his country is not opposed to the Russian Navy returning to the base in Cam Ranh Bay, on the condition that its presence is not directed against any third country. Will Russia take the opportunity to regain a foothold in Southeast Asia? Svobodnaya Pressa journalist Anton Mardasov explores.

Speaking to the Russian news agency RIA Novosti earlier this week, Nguyen Thanh Sean explained that “Vietnam’s policy is not to enter military alliances or to ally with any one state against another.”

During the interview, Nguyen Thanh Sean also said that Hanoi plans to continue defense cooperation with Russia, and added that Vietnam has always considered Russia to be “a close country, and a traditional partner,” and that a “relationship of trust with Russia is a priority of Vietnamese foreign policy.” Continue reading

Russia and ASEAN on way toward strategic partnership – Thailand’s PM

Thailand’s PM Prayut Chan-o-cha says Thailand supports raising the level of cooperation between Russia and ASEAN

“I have no doubt that the jubilee Russia-ASEAN summit will facilitate multilateral cooperation between ASEAN and Russia and will lay a path toward strategic partnership between the two sides,” Prayut said.

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China Building Missiles to Strike Guam

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Ballistic and cruise missile threat to U.S. island is increasing, congressional commission says

China is building up intermediate-range ballistic and cruise missiles that pose a growing threat to Guam, the strategic Pacific island that is central to the U.S. military pivot to Asia, according to a congressional report made public Tuesday.

Six different missiles capable of reaching Guam from China are deployed or in late stages of development, says the report by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission. Continue reading

China’s water hegemony

The severe drought now ravaging Southeast and South Asia has helped spotlight China’s emergence as the upstream water controller in Asia through a globally unparalleled hydro-engineering infrastructure centered on damming rivers. Indeed, Beijing itself has highlighted its water hegemony over downstream countries by releasing some dammed water for drought-hit nations in the lower Mekong River basin.

In releasing what it called “emergency water flows” to downstream states over several weeks from one of its six giant dams — located just before the Mekong flows out of Chinese territory — China brashly touted the utility of its upstream structures in fighting droughts and floods. Continue reading

Germany’s Leading Role

BERLIN/CIUDAD DE MÉXICO (Own report) – Following her talks yesterday with Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto in Berlin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced that Germany will strengthen its partnership with Mexico. It will train members of the police and armed forces and enhance economic cooperation with that country. Mexico, traditionally, has been one of the German companies’ two most important trading partners in Latin America. Particularly German automobile companies use Mexico as a low-wage production site for the lucrative US market. Cooperation now will also be strengthened with the military and in the field of domestic repression. This must be seen in the context of the gradual polarization on both shores of the Pacific, as Western powers and their allies take up positions in opposition to the People’s Republic of China, while several governments, which had refused to bow to western hegemony, have been recently either voted out of office or are threatened with being ousted. Berlin is offensively supporting those forces, cooperating with the West – such as Mexico, whose President Peña Nieto, in turn, explicitly recognizes Germany’s “leading role.”

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Australian military plane flies over disputed South China Sea

An Australian military surveillance plane has flown near disputed areas of the South China Sea, it emerged Wednesday, with the crew heard warning China’s navy it was on a freedom of navigation mission.

Tensions in the region have mounted since China transformed reefs in the South China Sea into small islands capable of supporting military facilities, a move the United States says threatens free passage in an area through which one-third of the world’s oil passes. Continue reading

China Building Third Airstrip on Disputed South China Sea Islets

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – China appears to be building a third airstrip in contested territory in the South China Sea, a U.S. expert said on Monday, citing satellite photographs taken last week.

The photographs taken for Washington’s Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) think tank on Sept. 8 show construction on Mischief Reef, one of several artificial islands China has created in the Spratly archipelago. Continue reading

Japanese paper fears US compromise over South China Sea

Since all members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations have deep economic connections with China, including those like Vietnam and the Philippines which have conflicting claims in the South China Sea, they are unlikely to support an escalation of conflict between Beijing and Washington over these claims, according to the article. Sun Jianguo, the head of People’s Liberation Army’s delegation to the recent Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore said China will try its best to maintain peaceful and friendly relationship with Southeast Asian states.

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Vietnam Buys Deadly New Missiles Capable of Hitting China

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Hanoi is the first Southeast Asian nation arming its submarines with land attack cruise missiles.

Vietnam is in the process of acquiring 50 anti-ship and land attack 3M-14E Klub supersonic cruise missiles for its burgeoning fleet of SSK Kilo-class diesel-electric submarines, Der Spiegel Online reports.

According to the article, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) recently updated data on its website, based on information obtained from the United Nations’ register of conventional arms, indicating that Russia has already delivered 28 missiles over the last two years to Hanoi, although the precise number remains unknown. Continue reading

Future Russian army could deploy anywhere in the world – in 7 hours

Artwork: Aleksey Komarov

Artwork: Aleksey Komarov

 

According to a new design specification from the Military-Industrial Commission in Moscow, a transport aircraft, dubbed PAK TA, will fly at supersonic speeds (up to 2,000 km/h) and will boast an impressively high payload of up to 200 tons. It will also have a range of at least 7,000 kilometers.

The PAK TA program envisages 80 new cargo aircraft to be built by 2024. This means in a decade Russia’s Central Command will be able to place a battle-ready armored army anywhere, Expert Online reports, citing a source in the military who attended the closed meeting.

The PAK TA freighters will be multilevel, with automated cargo loading and have the capability to airdrop hardware and personnel on any terrain. Continue reading

En Route to New Conflicts (II)

BERLIN (Own report) – In the midst of a phase of the expansion of the EU’s military policy relations with several East and Southeast Asian countries, German Chancellor Angela Merkel will visit Japan. Merkel will arrive March 8 in the Japanese capital, reciprocating Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to Germany last year. Tokyo seeks to intensify its cooperation with EU countries – also militarily – to enhance its position in territorial conflicts with Beijing. At the same time, the United States is focusing, to a growing extent, its global policy efforts on eastern Asia and the Pacific Basin. Shortly before Merkel is to visit Japan, a study published by the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) points out that the interests of several EU countries would be “massively affected should conflicts escalate in this region.” These conflicts are mostly about territorial sovereignty over islands and groups of islands, which recently have become accentuated. SWP proposed that the EU “discuss” what position to take “in case of conflict.”

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