China is playing a dark game with Taiwan over the murder suspect in the case that sparked the spark of the Hong Kong liberation protests. A young man from Hong Kong traveled to Taiwan with his girlfriend where he murdered her, then returned to Hong Kong. Because China plays politics with Taiwan, Beijing refused every channel of cooperation with Taipei to bring the suspect to justice. The only way Beijing would allow the arrested suspect to be transferred to Taiwan for prosecution is with a sweeping extradition bill that would allow any Chinese court to demand the extradition of anyone in Hong Kong to China.
Now, Hong Kong has released the suspect, arguing that a criminal is on the loose in Hong Kong because Taiwan won’t accept Chinese dictated rule.
We are witnessing the faceoff of Chinese Confucianism vs Western Christendom, a conflict which has been brewing for two thousand years. This is happening in our day. Many in the West said that Confucian Shame cannot be overcome, even with the Christian message of forgiveness and reconciliation. Others have said that nothing can ever stop China because big countries always win. All of these claims are about to be tested and proven wrong. Hard times lie ahead, but not all hardship ends badly.
America faces a crossroads. We have enemies mounting against us. Great monsters, fed and allowed to grow, are coming back to haunt us, hunt us, and devour us. It’s scary. And, there is a natural tendency to negotiate and avoid provoking wrath of what already wants to eat us.
Some Americans—many, perhaps—have done very bad things in the past. But, many of us learn and improve. Others of us fought against the injustice. Like any nation, America needs to heal, grow, fight the bad, and strengthen the good. We don’t need to all lay down and die as our enemies want.
Death comes like a burglar, sneaking in the night. It seeks to isolate, frighten, paralyze first with fear, then with venom, and finally consume. Death makes us long for fear and even death itself. Don’t follow its poisonous seduction.
When a people find their heart, no matter how dark times have become, they have what they need to overcome any obstacle. The greatest battle is not over land or law, nor waged with guns or swords, but over the heart and fought with the heart.
We face trying, fearful times. By standing on our values, no matter the cost, we will pay a lesser price in the long run anyway.
We are not headed to a Second Cold War. We are not at risk of heading to a Second Cold War. We are traveling at trans-warp speed toward the First Flash War. It will start and end quickly, laying the groundwork for WWIII and FWII to follow.
These pieces of our times are important to distinguish. Different analysts with different levels of understanding of history are trying their best to explain our times. To a novice—either to history or to the West or to the East—who just begins to understand, it may seem like we are headed toward Cold War II.
China and the US are in a growing conflict on the surface, but Russia is whispering in China’s ear. Russia wants the same old thing. The US is generally unaware of Russia’s intent or dismisses it.
China thinks that the US wants to retain power. China wants to rise, so Beijing feels the need to “beat back” the US.
The US knows China wants to rise and doesn’t mind. The US wants to step back, but knows China is an undisciplined bully—lawless and doesn’t respect human rights. So, the US feels the need to “beat down” China to make Beijing behave.
The US takes the approach of protectionism and innovation—tariffs and moving manufacturing back home. China takes the approach of its domineering culture and copying others—both doomed to fail.
One of the Chinese’s biggest complaints used to justify their military aggression in the South Sea is American presence. The claim is that the US has 180 military bases throughout East Asia, rephrased “near China”. Because of this, China calls America the “aggressor” and, like the burglar who thinks society stole from him first, says its military response is justified.
The US has been in many of those places since the end of WWII and after the Korean War. The Chinese didn’t know about this US presence because their surveillance tech wasn’t good enough. Once China reverse-engineered and stole designs for enough Western tech—because they still don’t know how to invent it on their own—they started to see that Americans had been their the whole time.
The “Second Coming Cold War” argument is flawed because we’ve already been in such a “cold” standoff for seven decades. That’s how Beijing interprets it anyway, and now the Chinese want to heat things up.
Consider the contradiction. For over 70 years, Americans have been quietly watching the seas. They didn’t harass fishermen. They didn’t aim missiles and launch threats. They didn’t attempt to ram into other boats. They never tried to deny passage through international waters. China has done all these things, but not the US—in 70 years! So, because of that, the US is the aggressor? That’s Beijing-style thinking anyway. And, that way of thinking is what Washington feels the need to defeat before it gets any bigger.
This week documented a Chinese general committing two “no-nos”. Firstly, he commented on the social structure of Hong Kong—military leaders are supposed to remain outside of politics. Secondly, the thus proven military government of China thus also proved disdain for the law it must abide by. Motive is one vital burden of proof in a conviction. Not only had Beijing meddled where it wasn’t allowed, but we now have an established motive.
China’s situation isn’t getting easier. Taiwan now has tested a new missile, boasting ability to fire within China’s mainland, being capable of destroying military targets on both land and sea. This is no laughing matter. On the economic front, Beijing has a hard-headed counterpart in the White House, Donald Trump. He shows no indication of backing down on any front, including Beijing. Now, China is going after Muslims.
While it can be politically incorrect for the West to pursue terrorists if they are Muslim, China doesn’t have that problem. Military states rarely do, which is one advantage China has over the West. Terror cells may be in hot water since China is on high alert in all directions. If Taiwan were to create trouble on its eastern coast, Beijing would not want more trouble from its western borders. So, any earlier preemptive action from Beijing is likely to be westward, toward Muslim nations. Those Muslim areas could be in greater danger than Taiwan.
Taiwanese have been busy, though. When anyone uses the “Taiwan, China” format, Taiwanese go berserk. That’s raising a lot of attention about a little island in the Pacific which now has missiles capable of attacking China. These are interesting times.