Cadence of Conflict: Asia, January 27, 2020

Trying to be polite or indirect while not taking no for an answer does not give anyone a right to make trouble. When someone gives a decisive, “No,” decent people accept that answer, then move on somehow. But, China doesn’t seem able to do that. In Beijing’s thought, relentlessly pushing forward, no matter how many more thousands hate them by the day, China is being polite to Hong Kong. They are being indirect. By not giving up, the Chinese Communists believe they have very politely told Hong Kongers how things will be, thereby justifying whatever manslaughter China chooses to invoke.

It’s not as if China has a lot of time to worry about telling other people what to do. Hong Kong was designed in its Basic Law to be largely autonomous. That means that Hong Kong can take care of itself, should China need to put energies into other matters—such as stopping the African swing flu or the Wuhan coronavirus.

China’s choices led to a landslide re-election for the de facto independence president of Taiwan. She says there is no independence to declare because Taiwan can’t possibly be any more independent than it already is. Some in Beijing might think that means Taiwan has reached its limit; but anyone in the West knows that means Taiwan already has the fullest measure of independence as defined. Yes, many in Beijing might not know that.

Vietnam reached a similar vague point in gearing up for military strength in ASEAN. Buying boats from India is also on Vietnam’s agenda—yes, India is another country China has managed to aggravate.

Why do things unfold this way in China’s back yard? It’s not that China is so much evil as it is immature. But, we tend to stay immature when we age, if we won’t open up to the outside world. Rather than helping China learn, the West just dumped money and emboldened a brat, all so we could save a few pennies on our stuff. Who is really being the most unfair to who? Friends know when to accept a no because friends know when to say, “No.”

Great Pacific

Vietnam Explores Increasing Foreign Military Cooperation to Resist China // VOA


Virus Fears Become New Source of Unrest for Battered Hong Kong // Bloomberg

Home confinement for Wuhan returnees // Taipei Times

China stiffens defenses against virus // Taipei Times

Coronavirus leaves 56 MILLION on lockdown in 14 cities as surgeon who treated sick becomes 41st confirmed death // The Sun

Coronavirus outbreak: Latest news and live updates // CNN

What People In China Are Saying About The Coronavirus Outbreak On Social Media // NPR

Hong Kong leader declares citywide virus emergency over coronavirus // CNBC

Chinese state media downplays coronavirus as Xi strikes positive tone // Guardian

WEF: Trump chose the wrong time to pick a war with China, Hong Kong businessman says // CNBC


Taiwan’s Election Rebuked Xi Jinping // National Review

Re-elected: BBC Interview with Taiwan President Tsai Ing-Wen // BBC News

Hong Kong

Hong Kong protests: tear gas fired on first day of Lunar New Year as crowd gathers to mark fourth anniversary of Mong Kok riot // SCMP

Why Hong Kong police have lost the trust of the people: I found it out the hard way // SCMP

Hong Kong’s Protesters Finally Have (Some) Power // The Atlantic

Toy Story: Hong Kong protest models become major hit // Bangkok Post

Korean Peninsula

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s aunt reappears after six years // BBC News