Cadence of Conflict: Asia, September 21, 2020

Taiwan has become the center of China’s conflict with the world. One economy at a time, one government at a time, China has managed to insult the world. The Chinese have done such a good job of losing friends and alienating voters of foreign countries, not even Russia can afford the political cost of siding with China, not even to manipulate China behind a mask of feigned friendship. Don’t expect Moscow to take center-stage at China’s aid quite yet.

While the world hates China more and more every day, that hatred finds a way to express itself in love for Taiwan. Taiwan is now the grand alternative! Taiwan is the adorable poster puppy everyone should have sided with from the beginning. Taiwan needs military help, but most of all sympathy, compassion, and understanding, perhaps even grandstanding. Nothing sends the message that a nation is fed up with China like siding with adorable, cuddly Taiwan, especially on the most trivial things like medical masks or forcing Taiwan to call its team “Chinese [what the heck] Taipei” at the Olympics. Trivial things, after all, are what China loves to claim as some of the greatest threats to Communist-controlled national security.

It’s almost to the level of being an election tactic in Western democracies. Do or say something that couldn’t even hurt a fly, then China squeaks and bellows and throws such a fuss, voters love whichever politician China hates. Nothing is as adorable and benign as kindness toward Taiwan. So, that’s the story of how Taiwan became the world’s new favorite.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, April 27, 2020

China is under global attack from all sides. It’s not just the government, but a sizeable portion of the Chinese people who cooperate with that government. We don’t know how many in China are part of the problem or the solution. Reports from China remain silenced and Chinese culture is beaten down and overtly compliant even to tyranny. While Chinese students at Western universities volunteer themselves as mouthpieces for Chinese Communist propaganda, they join the party deemed guilty by the jury of the world.

African governments are in panic about Chinese government gentrification of their own nations. China is seen as the villain who covered up information vital to the EU. Great Britain is fed up with China, claiming the Chinese don’t just lack or hide information, but lie about it. Trump has been warning the world about China since before he was president—arguably that got him elected.

Then again, there’s Taiwan again. Former US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, has a petition for Taiwan to be admitted to the WHO. Even in a recent scuffle over some infected Navy sailors who walked around in Taiwanese public, there still are no new person-to-person virus cases in Taiwan 14 days later. The staggering success is largely accredited to Taiwan’s miraculously brilliant and swift handling of the situation. It’s all based on a germ-phobic population, slow and steady sectional school closing protocols, but it started with immediate and utter lockdown against the since-become world villain: China.

Taiwan has foresight. Maybe that’s why China wants Taiwan out of the WHO. And now, the truth isn’t hiding anymore.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, February 3, 2020

The world is fed up with China’s Communist Party, including people in China. The Wuhan virus is a blame-blaming scandal of a magnitude greater than Chairman Mao. It could crack the foundation of Xi Jinping’s rule and party confidence along with it.

Top down leadership ties the hands of first responders. So does propaganda-driven speech censorship. Of course an outbreak will breakout where people aren’t allowed to respond or warn without permission from the central bureaucracy. For China, it was only a matter of time.

And, the world is fed up. Now Hong Kong, severely underprepared for an outbreak, faces a strike of 6k medical workers and growing—if CEO Carrie Lam doesn’t completely close the Hong Kong border to China. Simply not having the resources to handle an outbreak should be enough for Hong Kong to to close its border. Not doing what simply should be done begs more questions of whether Beijing’s top down leadership is preventing Hong Kong from responding to the Wuhan outbreak, which would be yet another violation of the Basic Law and a breach of China’s treaty with Britain that allowed Hong Kong to return.

Shameless in the face of its mismanagement in Wuhan then Hong Kong, China then asked the EU for emergency medical supplies. The EU would be wise to respond that giving medical supplies would require proper oversight, including an end to the bureaucratic methods of centralized control that delayed containment in Wuhan and keeps Hong Kong in danger. Also, the EU should require China to stop politicizing Taiwan’s need to join the World Health Organization.

Argument could be made that Taiwan and the West are capitalizing on the Wuhan crisis to get more international recognition for Taiwan. But, then it could also be argued that China created that need to capitalize on a crisis to do something that should have been done long ago. In light of the Wuhan outbreak, Canada, Japan, and the EU now sponsor Taiwan’s request to join the World Health Organization as an active participant, not a mere observer. A viral White House petition snowballed past the threshold over the weekend, effectively making the same request of President Trump. Now that Trump has a massive petition to respond to, China won’t be able to claim “interference” when he responds. But, China may try to anyway because, in Confucian Communist thinking, petitions of the people should be ignored.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, February 25, 2019

Nations and peoples of the free world are reaching toward each other. The EU reached out to Taiwan and Taiwan was grateful. Taiwan reached out to CNN and CNN did an interview. Kim Jong Un is likely on a train headed through China to Vietnam to meet President Trump. President Trump met with the Vice Premier of China in the Oval Office to discuss trade. And, China “rightly” oppresses an estimated two million Muslims in internment camps, who inhabit the hope-to-breakaway province of Xinjiang, through which China’s “Silk Road” passes to reach other nations with trillions of dollars in trade.

Taiwan’s position in the world only stepped up. In tech, it’s the multinational victim of China. The EU’s unanimous statement of support for Taiwan and condemnation of China’s military activity in the Taiwan Strait is anything but positive PR for China. Taiwan has the support of Europe; that doesn’t count for nothing.

China’s latest shenanigans include Hong Kong taking a serious look at redefining extradition laws so that Taiwanese in Hong Kong would be “extradited” to China. This does far more damage for Hong Kong’s popularity with its electorate at home than it does for Taiwan, raising international sympathy for both. Remember, meddling in Hong Kong’s government is a “must not” as the condition of Hong Kong not remaining under Britain. Nothing would indicate Chinese meddling in Hong Kong’s government more than such a sure-to-backfire anti-PR move like Hong Kong is making by even entertaining such a revision.

The fingerprints of Beijing damaging Hong Kong where British interests remain, all in order to damage Taiwan, goes against the wisdom of courting favor with the masses across Europe. Then, there’s Huawei.

As if international scandals implicating China weren’t enough, Huawei’s founder made the narcissistic comment that “the world can’t live without Huawei”. In Chinese culture, that might make enough people feel compelled to comply. But, the God-fearing West will take the self-absorbed claim as a challenge, much how God took the challenge when “experts” said He couldn’t sink the Titanic. Huawei just might take its place in the hall of sunken fame. No, the West does not. Not too many years from now, when a finance guru claims that a company is “too big to fail”, the public will respond, “Remember Huawei.”

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Encore of Revival, America, December 17, 2018

Every accusation against Trump so far sets a precedent to indite James Comey for refusing to prosecute Hillary for worse crimes. Trump’s actual crime was unwritten, that he threatened the comfortable cash cow machine run by a parasitic establishment accurately referred to as “the swamp”. These increasingly petty, evermore numerous, and parabolically dramatic accusations will not end in turning votes against Trump, but toward him. The only turnings against will be the masses revolting against the establishment for its attacks against Trump and a revolt against the media that reports the attacks as “fair”. The public will see this as quite unfair because of greater priorities going unmentioned, including a multi-million dollar hush-slush fund in Congress.

So, the swamp’s machine attacked a dirty lawyer and sentenced him to prison. Now, that lawyer has suddenly turned to saint because he wants to get out of jail by speaking against his own client—a president hated by the same swamp. Can a lawyer that the DOJ has worked so hard to imprison as a sleeze bag suddenly be deemed a credible witness without any ill motives? Connect the dots. The swamp always wants everything both ways.

The swamp is indeed ramping up the assault against Trump, but not because of any new position of strength; the swamp is on attack because the swamp is desperate. What we’re about to see in the next two years will be Kavanaugh all over again, only this time it will push Trump to re-election, better than before.

Then we have the Brexitexit. Questions needs to be asked about what connections nay-voters in Parliament have to Brussels. British politics work differently from American. Prime Minister Chamberlain allowed Hitler to rise in power while Parliament kept Winston away. Once the feckless mess grew intolerable, the king had to intervene. After Winston won the war—with the help of some extremely profitable former colonies in America that the Britons claim they carelessly misplaced—the Britons ousted Winston after his warnings that Russia was a rising danger. No doubt many in Great Britain will forget their frustration with past attempts to unite Europe, or the recent attempt—the EU—in squandering British tax dollars on socialist promises to solve self-made problems, such as more recently seen in France.

One of the few wise prime ministers, Margret Thatcher, said, “The trouble with Socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money.” Now, the EU has run out of the Britons’ money and “will allow” the Britons to stay in if they want—and some Britons are actually talking about staying in. The American way—which defeated the Nazis for the British—would be for British Parliament to pass its own terms first, giving the EU the ultimatum. If May wants to keep her job, she should tell Parliament, “Give me whatever terms you accept, then I will defend them before Brussels.” But, that would require the strong spine of a cowgirl, not the tender skin of true gentlemen. There are many smart people in Great Britain, just not any that we can see from the decisions being made right now.

The way things look, America will need to come to the rescue of our British brothers yet again. Given America’s improving situation, it looks like we’ll be able.

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Cadence of Conflict: Asia, February 20, 2017

Keeping 70 years of war on the books is not only a bad idea, it is a hazard. That period is longer than copyright laws and ten times longer than debts can be collected and taxes audited. At some point, old debts are better to be sold off to keep the books clear of overdue accounts receivable. China has its reasons to want Taiwan, just as the Taiwanese have their reasons not to want China’s flag flown on their soil. But, keeping the discussion unresolved has resulted in growing opposition, not for Taiwan, but for China.

China’s “One Belt One Road” project in Europe is under investigation for legal compliance. Just the investigation is an insult and, even if it ends in China’s favor, that investigation could be reopened at any point in the future, even after the railroad has been completed. The two main points to note in the deal are that the government of China is negotiating in the manner of a private business entity and that China is consistent in wanting singularity in more areas than just maps.

The US has sent carrier group USS Carl Vinson to what it is calling “routine operations” in China’s backyard. Without 70 years on the books, not so many changes could be so easily chalked up to “routine”. Now, India wants in on the game.

When resisting Beijing control, many will cite Communist States like North Korea or Cuba. People don’t want their country to change in a way that introduces the need to join the government or military in order to have hope of a stable future. Taiwanese see smog in China’s air and feces in China’s streets and they think that more territory would make life even worse on an already strained government.

But, then there is what happened in Hong Kong. Regardless of which side of the issue people are on, media mogul Jimmy Lai, students, police, government, and businesses in Hong Kong saw quite a disturbance in Central during the “Umbrella Movement” occupation. But, Taipei’s “Sunflower Movement” only lasted three weeks and ended voluntarily, not three months only ending by forced eviction. Taiwanese elect whomever they want and they are happy.

Hong Kong’s theater and controversy, on all sides of the biases, can’t happen in Taiwan as the island’s situation now stands. If China’s flag flew over Taiwan’s, that would change and ways of life that are as subtle as they are constant would be up for grabs.

Chinese have their reasons for wanting to reclaim Taiwan. Taiwanese have everyone’s way of life in Asia as their reason for wanting the countries to call status quo what it is. Regime change would be a disruption, no matter who makes it.

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