Cadence of Conflict: Asia, May 18, 2020

It was a week of slap after slap in China’s face. Congress pokes at Human Rights in Xinjiang among other old-news grievances. China “warns” the US—again—about Huawei, apparently unaware that warnings require power or at least clout, of which China retains neither.

As blame circulates against China for a global outbreak, Taiwan courts favor. Airlines have corrected a listing that identifies Taiwan as somehow part of China or something-or-other. You know you’ve lost when airline companies aren’t even afraid of you.

The dirtiest and best-kept secret is about war. China can’t even threaten military action against America because of the elections in America. While American polling likely lies as usual, war is good for any sitting president’s numbers. Threat of war would be good news for America’s incumbent, whomever that incumbent may be.

So, China is left with a choice: Wait until the West is even stronger in China’s back yard and face shame for not acting or else respond to Western provocation to start a war too early and face shame for losing. All China has to go on is persistent delusions of ancient grandeur. We’ll see how that works out.


China warns US of ‘all necessary measures’ over Huawei rules // Taiwan News

Here it comes…
China should lie low in times of crisis: Chinese academic // Taiwan News

Senate Passes Uighur Human Rights Bill in Latest Shot at China // Bloomberg

Student backlash prompts McMaster University to remove Hong Kong Police Force job postings // CBA

U.S. accuses Chinese-born researcher at Cleveland Clinic of ties to Chinese spying // Yahoo News

China announces new raft of US imports eligible for trade war tariff waivers amid rising superpower tensions // SCMP

China fires its latest underwater nuclear missile into spotlight with science prize // SCMP

Simon S. Ang: FBI arrests NASA researcher who allegedly failed to report ties to China // CNN


Airlines correct references to Taiwan: ministry // Taipei Times

Military Faceoff

USAF abandons 80% mission capability goal after three fighters miss target // FlightGlobal

F-35’s Image as $428 Billion Bundle of Flaws Improved by Fixes // Bloomberg