China - Geostrategic & Geopolitical.

OPSSG

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Staff member
In mid-Aug 2020, China has fired an array of missiles near the Paracel Islands, clearly intended to shape the attitudes and actions of the US and ASEAN. China says it doesn’t need to recognize international law — because it doesn’t think it had enough influence in shaping its regional security environment.
In PLA Navy culture, the nine-dash is a boundary between home and abroad. Every time a Chinese warship crosses it heading overseas, sailors formally say farewell to the motherland and vice versa.

The PLA Navy’s Southern Theater Command in the South China Sea has conducted exercises for capture of Taiwan's Dongsha islands (Pratas).
 
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Sandhi Yudha

Well-Known Member
In mid-Aug 2020, China has fired an array of missiles near the Paracel Islands, clearly intended to shape the attitudes and actions of the US and ASEAN. China says it doesn’t need to recognize international law — because it doesn’t think it had enough influence in shaping its regional security environment.
In PLA Navy culture, the nine-dash is a boundary between home and abroad. Every time a Chinese warship crosses it heading overseas, sailors formally say farewell to the motherland and vice versa.

The PLA Navy’s Southern Theater Command in the South China Sea has conducted exercises for capture of Taiwan's Dongsha islands (Pratas).
Regarding the Nine-dashline as the territorial border....absolutely not an imperialistic attitude... :-D

Such things like this you can expect in a society based on propaganda and censorship.

Cheng Lei, a presenter for China Global Television Network (CGTN), is suspected of "criminal activity endangering China's national security".
 

Ananda

Well-Known Member

China clearly in the active diplomatic approach to SCS neighbors, in the effort to regain trust. Sending the Defense Minister shown how they want to talk on rule of conduct in SCS and Defense relationship building.

However they're also clearly still want to do it not in multilateral/International body level. They try to gain their agenda through bilateral approach.

Cheng Lei, a presenter for China Global Television Network (CGTN), is suspected of "criminal activity endangering China's national security".
I got two University mates that currently working with KPMG in Shanghai. One is Indonesian Chinese decent, the other is Indonesian with Sumatra Malays decent. Before COVID, they told me story how Chinese treat them. My Indonesian Chinese friend told how the Chinese give him cold shoulder and sometime bit hostile, if he's shown possition to support Indonesia on SCS rather then PRC. While they basically accept my native Sumatran friend with similar position.

This shown that the Chinese in mainland still not accepting overseas Chinese that have possition that not supporting PRC. Eventough that overseas Chinese support his/her own country position.

My Indonesian Chinese friend says that this happen to mostly of his overseas Chinese friend and colleagues that working with China. The psyche of mainland Chinese that overseas Chinese should also put their loyalty to mainland China/PRC over their own country still loom high there.

It shown on the article you put, she maybe Australian, but in the eyes of PRC, she's Chinese and should be hold the loyalty to motherland over Australia.
 

Ananda

Well-Known Member

Indonesian Foreign Minister in Reuters article, told China and US not to drag Indonesia and on broader sense Asean to their increasingly conflicts.
This's in my opinion seems directed to overall Asean also, as her statement also put the 10 Asean member want to be excluded on the conflicts and want to stay neutral.
 

ngatimozart

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An article by Peter Jennings of ASPI on current PRC strategic thinking. Xi’s black-box strategic thinking. It's quite an interesting take and I actually agree with the article. Xi, by all appearances, has reinstituted the "cult of personality" not seen since the Gang of Four were executed. I get the impression that Xi sees himself as the new Mao, maybe even greater than the Great Helmsman himself and this can only bode ill for not only the PRC but the world at large. Jennings says that Xi has bought 20th century Leninist authoritarianism into the 21st century, so imagine Mao or Stalin with 21st century surveillance capabilities.

Recently there have been protests in Inner Mongolia as China enforces the teaching of Mandarin in replacement of Mongolian, Culture war: Inner Mongolia seethes as China presses Mandarin at school as the PRC forces assimilation on non Han ethnicities, especially in the border regions. This is the same process that has happened in Tibet and Xinjiang, and where the repression is draconian.

The PRC is making the moves on Kiribati with promises of land reclamation to build up islands so that they won't be inundated due to sea level

1600600657489.png
Image sourced from Raaymakers article.

rise, China moving in on climate-threatened Kiribati. The PRC intention is to create two major ports in Kiribati for a market that doesn't exist. This is a strategically important area and the Japanese knew that during WW2 fortifying it. The Battle of Tarawa was fought within the Kiribati Islands and was the gateway to Saipan, Iwo Jima and Okinawa. It was within these islands that the USN built up its staging areas for those campaigns. Kiribati sits astride the SLOC between North America and Australia and New Zealand. It would cut off Guam from Hawaii, North America and Australia, and possibly threaten Hawaii. It would bring NZ into direct conflict with PRC interests through PRC ships / fishing vessels in the Cook Islands EEZ which is part of the Realm of New Zealand.
 

t68

Well-Known Member
An article by Peter Jennings of ASPI on current PRC strategic thinking. Xi’s black-box strategic thinking. It's quite an interesting take and I actually agree with the article. Xi, by all appearances, has reinstituted the "cult of personality" not seen since the Gang of Four were executed. I get the impression that Xi sees himself as the new Mao, maybe even greater than the Great Helmsman himself and this can only bode ill for not only the PRC but the world at large. Jennings says that Xi has bought 20th century Leninist authoritarianism into the 21st century, so imagine Mao or Stalin with 21st century surveillance capabilities.

Recently there have been protests in Inner Mongolia as China enforces the teaching of Mandarin in replacement of Mongolian, Culture war: Inner Mongolia seethes as China presses Mandarin at school as the PRC forces assimilation on non Han ethnicities, especially in the border regions. This is the same process that has happened in Tibet and Xinjiang, and where the repression is draconian.

The PRC is making the moves on Kiribati with promises of land reclamation to build up islands so that they won't be inundated due to sea level

View attachment 47685
Image sourced from Raaymakers article.

rise, China moving in on climate-threatened Kiribati. The PRC intention is to create two major ports in Kiribati for a market that doesn't exist. This is a strategically important area and the Japanese knew that during WW2 fortifying it. The Battle of Tarawa was fought within the Kiribati Islands and was the gateway to Saipan, Iwo Jima and Okinawa. It was within these islands that the USN built up its staging areas for those campaigns. Kiribati sits astride the SLOC between North America and Australia and New Zealand. It would cut off Guam from Hawaii, North America and Australia, and possibly threaten Hawaii. It would bring NZ into direct conflict with PRC interests through PRC ships / fishing vessels in the Cook Islands EEZ which is part of the Realm of New Zealand.

In regards to NZ that finally might be the straw that breaks the camels back, it may make them think and soon realise that it’s interests might be compromised in regards to your often quoted Sea Blindness
 

Stampede

Well-Known Member
An interesting commentary from Bang Xiox and Michael Walsh on the ABC news web site today.
Certainly a confronting question.


What I find concerning is the increased pace of boarder intrusions.
Something I understand Japan is contending with from both China and Russia.
Certainly a region to watch with concern.
Will be interesting after the US presidential election what the winning administration makes of how to handle these issues.

USA in or out of Asia?????

Regards S
 

Beholder

Member
Will be interesting after the US presidential election what the winning administration makes of how to handle these issues.

USA in or out of Asia?????
USA started shift it's focus to Asia Pacific long time ago. No matter who wins election, this will happen.
The only difference is approach. IMO

Trump probably will try to create and support some kind of regional force that can contain China without directly involve US in such force, but act as an ally of such force. Example you can see with my country(i'm israeli), or Gulf Monarchies vs Iran, or even eastern EU countries vs RF.
As long as he make US seem not as reliable as in the past, regional countries will probably deepen mutual cooperation, as fall back.

Biden probably will walk old road of creating some kind of worldwide(if possible) security framework against China, where US directly involved as an integral part. Lot of examples around the world, with Asia Pacific before Trump is also such example.

Bottom line for US it is national security issue.

---------------------------------

I have a question of my own too.
How ppl in Asia Pacific countries view China and how they view possible confrontation China/US from perspective of respective countries?
I can only read in english, so have limited understanding of region.
 

pussertas

Active Member
Melbournians appreciate the local Chinese, especially for their food. However the Vietnamese have a strong presence in many suburbs.

Visitors from mainland China are rarely in contact with the locals as they arrive in organised tour groups hosted by a Chinese speaking guide who's main job is to take the group to locations that return most of the profit to mainland China.

The older Chinese residents speak the Cantonese dialect.
 

ngatimozart

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USA started shift it's focus to Asia Pacific long time ago. No matter who wins election, this will happen.
The only difference is approach. IMO

Trump probably will try to create and support some kind of regional force that can contain China without directly involve US in such force, but act as an ally of such force. Example you can see with my country(i'm israeli), or Gulf Monarchies vs Iran, or even eastern EU countries vs RF.
As long as he make US seem not as reliable as in the past, regional countries will probably deepen mutual cooperation, as fall back.

Biden probably will walk old road of creating some kind of worldwide(if possible) security framework against China, where US directly involved as an integral part. Lot of examples around the world, with Asia Pacific before Trump is also such example.

Bottom line for US it is national security issue.
Regarding Biden, that remains to be seen. He's quite capable of reading the tea leaves and there's an isolationist trend afoot in the US. I have read in different places that he may not be keen on returning US foreign to its 2016 settings. A lot has changed since the inauguration in January of 2017 and the current White House has annoyed many allies and friends, but more importantly, with regard to this conversation, it has caused them and others to lose trust in the US. How the next Administration defines and delivers its foreign and defence policy will be the telling point.
I have a question of my own too.
How ppl in Asia Pacific countries view China and how they view possible confrontation China/US from perspective of respective countries?
I can only read in english, so have limited understanding of region.
In NZ we have PRC immigrants and tourists. Most of the tourists have little interaction with locals because they are mostly on bus tours. However there are a reasonable number who undertake self drive and tour the country. Since we have closed the borders due to Covid-19, our roads have been somewhat better to drive, because of the lack of foreign tourists on them who are not used to driving on the left hand side of the road nor are they used to NZ driving conditions.

From what I understand NZ born Chinese, especially 2nd, 3rd, 4th generation Kiwis etc., consider PRC citizens as those Chinese. They may be the same ethnicity but that's as close as it gets.
 

oldsig127

The Bunker Group
Verified Defense Pro
Visitors from mainland China are rarely in contact with the locals as they arrive in organised tour groups hosted by a Chinese speaking guide who's main job is to take the group to locations that return most of the profit to mainland China.
That would be excluding the tens of thousands of students of course. And in addition excludes a hell of a lot of Australian owned and operated tourism businesses which are now starving for want of their money.

oldsig
 

Beholder

Member
Regarding Biden, that remains to be seen. He's quite capable of reading the tea leaves and there's an isolationist trend afoot in the US. I have read in different places that he may not be keen on returning US foreign to its 2016 settings. A lot has changed since the inauguration in January of 2017 and the current White House has annoyed many allies and friends, but more importantly, with regard to this conversation, it has caused them and others to lose trust in the US. How the next Administration defines and delivers its foreign and defence policy will be the telling point.
Trump's "America First" is as far as US isolationism can get, so Biden can't be more isolationist then Trump.
He can appease such trends by simply continue disengage from China. IMO
Ppl that support him on the other hand will want to return that trust in US, so US will want to demonstrate "leadership as most powerful democracy in the world" and to do so may revert to previous policy.
----------
Loosing trust in US is good. IMO
Current US is war weary and there is no new Cold war on horizon, so i think world and Asia Pacific in particular will benefit if other democratic countries will do more heavy lifting and not push all security responsibilities onto US. It's not like democracies will throw away values and turn to China tributaries. Besides US is not going away and still world superpower.

Take North Korea as example, it is very dangerous power, that China can use and i see it as a direct result of old security framework, where expectations were beyond of what US alone can actually deliver.

In general China's military ambitions are regional in nature, both because they lack ability and because they so much focused on disputes around they own borders.
They do have ability to buy influence in non liberal countries around the world, so Trump model with regional powers taking more security responsibilities is better suited to current world.IMO

From what I understand NZ born Chinese, especially 2nd, 3rd, 4th generation Kiwis etc., consider PRC citizens as those Chinese. They may be the same ethnicity but that's as close as it gets.
Actually it doesn't matter as much as it seems. I can tell you from israeli experience.
In Israel there are ~20% of arabs, majority muslims. There is no reason to shun a community even if you suspect that sizeable part are of different loyalties.
We had spontaneous terrorist acts when ppl, not belonging to any terrorist organization took knife and attacked, or drive car into ppl etc. We also had one MK(our parliament member) leaking sensitive data and break laws on behalf of enemy.
And it is as far as it goes. As a liberal society you simply enforce law.

Is NZ going to join some kind of regional military alliance if such alliance is established? I mean when you look at diplomatic storm between China and Australia...
 

ngatimozart

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Trump's "America First" is as far as US isolationism can get, so Biden can't be more isolationist then Trump.
He can appease such trends by simply continue disengage from China. IMO
Ppl that support him on the other hand will want to return that trust in US, so US will want to demonstrate "leadership as most powerful democracy in the world" and to do so may revert to previous policy.
----------
Loosing trust in US is good. IMO
Current US is war weary and there is no new Cold war on horizon, so i think world and Asia Pacific in particular will benefit if other democratic countries will do more heavy lifting and not push all security responsibilities onto US. It's not like democracies will throw away values and turn to China tributaries. Besides US is not going away and still world superpower.

Take North Korea as example, it is very dangerous power, that China can use and i see it as a direct result of old security framework, where expectations were beyond of what US alone can actually deliver.

In general China's military ambitions are regional in nature, both because they lack ability and because they so much focused on disputes around they own borders.
They do have ability to buy influence in non liberal countries around the world, so Trump model with regional powers taking more security responsibilities is better suited to current world.IMO



Actually it doesn't matter as much as it seems. I can tell you from israeli experience.
In Israel there are ~20% of arabs, majority muslims. There is no reason to shun a community even if you suspect that sizeable part are of different loyalties.
We had spontaneous terrorist acts when ppl, not belonging to any terrorist organization took knife and attacked, or drive car into ppl etc. We also had one MK(our parliament member) leaking sensitive data and break laws on behalf of enemy.
And it is as far as it goes. As a liberal society you simply enforce law.

Is NZ going to join some kind of regional military alliance if such alliance is established? I mean when you look at diplomatic storm between China and Australia...
No new Cold War on the horizon? We are at the start or Cold War 2.0 now and it ain't going to disappear if there is a change of guard in the White House. Xi Jinping is not his predecessor; he is a completely different animal bent upon being the next Great Helmsman adored, worshipped, and venerated by the masses. He's cast Deng Xaiopeng's cautions and advise aside.
 

Beholder

Member
No new Cold War on the horizon? We are at the start or Cold War 2.0 now and it ain't going to disappear if there is a change of guard in the White House. Xi Jinping is not his predecessor; he is a completely different animal bent upon being the next Great Helmsman adored, worshipped, and venerated by the masses. He's cast Deng Xaiopeng's cautions and advise aside.
Mmm, let me write my current impression of China and differences with Soviet(or difference/similarities with Iran/ Turkey as other examples of threats with various degree of ambitions, that are regional in nature) and correct me if i'm wrong(that is the reason of me registering here in the first place;)).

As with any threat there is need to examine both intent, capability.

Lets look at ideology first:

Soviets were holding communist ideology, which called to support similar ideology around the world. Whole world need to be communist in the end. So they were happy to go around the world to steer communist sentiments, supply weapons(more often then not completely free) and even directly enter conflict where possible. Basically they were leaders of block of countries.
Russians that were backbone of this block hold a lot of messianic sentiments in theirs culture, such things are actually good to hold for empire building and it works for commies as well.

Ideology that China currently push is very different. Basically they push they own flawed version of human right devoid of civil and political liberties, but with financial and personal freedom as alternative. They basically say: "look at our financial success, at our secure thriving society, at our technological advances, you can have it too, you don't have to be liberal democracy at all and if you want we invest in you and won't bother about your political system, all that you have to do is accept China's rightful position in new reality and know your place(which is directly proportional to strength of country)"
As you can see it does not call for expansion and actually unable to do so. I think in China's view they return to rightful place in the world. And they view world as collection of countries that have hierarchy based on individual country's strength and it is expected for weaker party to submit to stronger.

In comparison Turkey(or rather Erdogan) ideology close to that of China, regional in nature, with pan-turkism with Turkey return to rightful place
as Ottoman Empire i guess.
Iran on the other hand similar to Soviet, they advocate permanent revolution(islamic in this case), and does not have boundaries, whole world have to submit in the end.
-------------------

Actions China make also completely in line with ideology. Basically if they consider themselves weaker party, then they won't act and ready to endure what they consider "humiliation". If they consider themselves stronger, they are willing to escalate.
So i think it's not that "He's cast Deng Xaiopeng's cautions and advise aside" as you say, but he probably feel strong enough. Maybe he miscalculated.
I think that historically/culturally China can't really understand alliances between non peers, it does not fit ideology, which rooted in Chinese culture.
So China unable to make alliances. Weaker in "alliance" must know it's place.
Plus we have actions of building "Belt road/Second silk road" or whatever they call it. And we have "bent upon being the next Great Helmsman adored, worshipped, and venerated by the masses" as you say. And we've seen China make moves to consolidate population in line of "all homogenous Han Chinese".

So when i look at ideology and actions i don't see commi, i see China empire of the past with meritocracy, possible tributary states and emperor in the making.

So is China will be expansionist? Probably, but it will be continuous expansion, first places close to home, then further away, then further away etc.
Come to region far away and make there troubles, like USSR did, they probably will not.

That why i say it's not exactly Cold war. Because we probably won't see proxy wars in various regions around the globe. US can safely concentrate on Asia Pacific.IMO
 

swerve

Super Moderator
But the Chinese are perfectly prepared to bully people & countries over trivial things, such as a Korean boy band saying something which is both positive & 100% true about the history of the relationship between S. Korea & the USA. That generated a storm of both private & official abuse from China, & is probably costing them money.

China may not be interested in military conquest outside its immediate area, but it looks as if it expects deference & obedience, including willingness to accept whatever lies China chooses to tell & stay silent about truths China dislikes.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
Perhaps we need to make a distinction now, it is Xi, not the former CCP establishment that is calling the shots. This is the greatest danger, we really don’t know what his end game is and if their is any relief valve that can curb him at this point. I suspect not.
 

Beholder

Member
China may not be interested in military conquest outside its immediate area, but it looks as if it expects deference & obedience, including willingness to accept whatever lies China chooses to tell & stay silent about truths China dislikes.
It's true, but i don't think China feels it's bullying.
China itself was basically mute politically till gained power. For example they started use of UNSC Veto just in 1997 etc.

Perhaps we need to make a distinction now, it is Xi, not the former CCP establishment that is calling the shots. This is the greatest danger, we really don’t know what his end game is and if their is any relief valve that can curb him at this point. I suspect not.
:) US certainly can't curb China for long alone. Then again US did not collapse USSR alone.

For example that is step in right direction:

This week’s Quad ministerial meeting, in four charts

I think China is bound to rise, it's a nation of 1.4 billion, so being strongest nation in the world is totally possible, but so what?
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
One thing that is a mystery, to me at least, is the financial/banking system in China and how vulnerable and corrupt it is. Some reports suggest it is a ticking time bomb (not that the US doesn’t have some issues as well). Could this be a factor in Xi’s plans? The other real issue is China’s aging demographics and the growing economic divide. Yes, several hundred million are doing pretty good, the other billion, not so much.
 

Stampede

Well-Known Member
Mmm, let me write my current impression of China and differences with Soviet(or difference/similarities with Iran/ Turkey as other examples of threats with various degree of ambitions, that are regional in nature) and correct me if i'm wrong(that is the reason of me registering here in the first place;)).

As with any threat there is need to examine both intent, capability.

Lets look at ideology first:

Soviets were holding communist ideology, which called to support similar ideology around the world. Whole world need to be communist in the end. So they were happy to go around the world to steer communist sentiments, supply weapons(more often then not completely free) and even directly enter conflict where possible. Basically they were leaders of block of countries.
Russians that were backbone of this block hold a lot of messianic sentiments in theirs culture, such things are actually good to hold for empire building and it works for commies as well.

Ideology that China currently push is very different. Basically they push they own flawed version of human right devoid of civil and political liberties, but with financial and personal freedom as alternative. They basically say: "look at our financial success, at our secure thriving society, at our technological advances, you can have it too, you don't have to be liberal democracy at all and if you want we invest in you and won't bother about your political system, all that you have to do is accept China's rightful position in new reality and know your place(which is directly proportional to strength of country)"
As you can see it does not call for expansion and actually unable to do so. I think in China's view they return to rightful place in the world. And they view world as collection of countries that have hierarchy based on individual country's strength and it is expected for weaker party to submit to stronger.

In comparison Turkey(or rather Erdogan) ideology close to that of China, regional in nature, with pan-turkism with Turkey return to rightful place
as Ottoman Empire i guess.
Iran on the other hand similar to Soviet, they advocate permanent revolution(islamic in this case), and does not have boundaries, whole world have to submit in the end.
-------------------

Actions China make also completely in line with ideology. Basically if they consider themselves weaker party, then they won't act and ready to endure what they consider "humiliation". If they consider themselves stronger, they are willing to escalate.
So i think it's not that "He's cast Deng Xaiopeng's cautions and advise aside" as you say, but he probably feel strong enough. Maybe he miscalculated.
I think that historically/culturally China can't really understand alliances between non peers, it does not fit ideology, which rooted in Chinese culture.
So China unable to make alliances. Weaker in "alliance" must know it's place.
Plus we have actions of building "Belt road/Second silk road" or whatever they call it. And we have "bent upon being the next Great Helmsman adored, worshipped, and venerated by the masses" as you say. And we've seen China make moves to consolidate population in line of "all homogenous Han Chinese".

So when i look at ideology and actions i don't see commi, i see China empire of the past with meritocracy, possible tributary states and emperor in the making.

So is China will be expansionist? Probably, but it will be continuous expansion, first places close to home, then further away, then further away etc.
Come to region far away and make there troubles, like USSR did, they probably will not.

That why i say it's not exactly Cold war. Because we probably won't see proxy wars in various regions around the globe. US can safely concentrate on Asia Pacific.IMO
China's annual grand military parades are an interesting look at the influence they have around the world with the participation of foreign contingents contributing to this event.


Will be interesting as to whether the number of "foreign flags" marching in this event increases with time.

Is the world dividing into two camps?

Regards S
 
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