China’s adversaries face a tightly closing decision. America needs to decide whether it can keep playing the role of the world-cop with only its B-game, or if it is ready to bust out its A-game not seen since FDR. More than ever, warnings of “rising China” smatter the presses. Will this result in Americans getting serious about the need to be serious—because they read about it? Or, is this intended to prepare the American public for some event that thrusts the West into an embarrassing scuffle with China?—embarrassing for China now, embarrassing for the West six years later.
Taiwan has its own choices. Many things inside Taiwan still reflect the thinking of Mainland China. While Taiwan’s government claims to seek democracy and a society where all people are respected with equal rights, their Confucian culture still succumbs to autocratic domineering, whether in the workplace, the classroom, or from government. If in their hearts, the Taiwanese want to retain the old ways of the Chinese, there is no American military big enough to help them against any adversary, even the smallest adversary. But, the factor of Taiwanese culture doesn’t seem to make its way into the military reports.
China was a major player in the Panama Papers scandal, including Hong Kong offices. British Prime Minister Cameron was involved. The British foreign secretary warned of threats to Hong Kong freedoms. Hong Kong’s CEO, Leung, hit back at calls for independence in the face of Hong Kong’s brand-new “National” party. China continues to crack down on corruption.
Japan send a sub and two destroyers to dock in Manila in the wake of the new Japan-Philipines defense pact. The US and Taiwan are drafting stronger ties affecting visitors. As Taiwan’s rising DPP political party gains popularity, the lame duck KMT-Nationalist party plays power against the DPP to the bitter end. North Korea tested a long-range nuclear missile engine to “guarantee” a strike on the continental US.
Friends and enemies are everywhere and everyone has a motive for everything.
Korea drew attention this week. It almost seems disappointed that it hasn’t drawn fire. The North has not built up its military just to make beautiful propaganda videos. Unlike the West, “building the bomb so you never need to use it” eludes the reasoning of the old far east.
But, something else seems to have slipped past China’s and Korea’s strategy—the Britons. During English-Scottish-Irish wars, the Scottish burned their own corn fields in response to being invaded. While the English culture has sought to dominate the world—even by language if necessary—Scottish defence methods have made the the Western British-American force unbeatable, at least from a cultural perspective.
While Congress, Senator McCain, Chairman of the Armed Services Committee, in particular, voices growing concern about America’s readiness for off-shore battle, China and North Korea don’t show any concern, or even awareness, about how the West thinks. When spreading propaganda about an enemy who has never lost a home game, it’s better not to show him an imaginary home game where he loses. He just won’t believe it.
The deeper question is does China really believe that if America had a weakness that the press would be allowed to know about it? McCain is the loud voice on the matter. Perhaps he understands something that China and Korea can’t.