Op/Ed:The United States versus China

By Allan Topol*

The greatest threat facing the United States in the twenty first century is the risk of war with China.  That issue is rarely discussed in the popular media.

Rather, our military obsession is with the three ongoing wars:  Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya.  We agonize over whether those wars are “winnable,” when can we reduce our troops and military expenditures, and whether these wars are spreading our army too thin, driving the country further into debt, and producing unacceptable casualties in view of the benefits.  In fact, none of these wars poses an existential threat to the United States.

We do have an enormous concern with China.  However, economic issues predominate.  It is only a question of time, decades at most, until China surpasses the United States as the world’s largest economy.  Chinese universities are graduating five times as many engineers as the United States.  They are now our bankers holding the treasury bonds and notes which keep the United States afloat.

History is change.  Unless the United States does something radically different or unless the Chinese miracle of operating a booming economy in a repressive society implodes, the question is when China will surpass us economically.  Not whether.

Last month, I was having dinner in Washington with a couple who had just returned from their first trip to China.  They spoke about what they saw:  The enormous building; the overnight development of huge factories and mega cities; and the incessant energy.  I imagined that similar conversations took place a hundred or so years ago in London when a couple returned from a visit to the United States.

It would be convenient to view China’s competition with the United States in purely economic terms.  But that would be naive and foolish.  We can no longer close our eyes to the growing Chinese military and to the risk that the United States and China could be drawn into a large scale war with horrendous consequences for both nations.

The March/April 2011 issue of the respected Foreign Affairs had on its cover:  “Will China’s Rise Lead to War?”  And I know from a source in the Pentagon that a special unit is dedicated to carefully monitoring China’s military expansion, while at the same time playing war games that pit the United States against China.

Recent developments underscore this looming threat.  In January of this year, Defense Secretary Robert Gates visited China with the objective of improving defense ties. While he was there, China’s military conducted a test flight of a new stealth fighter jet.  This bold, in your face, show of force was bad enough.  What made it even worse was that the civilian leadership, including Chinese President Hu Jintao, claimed that they were uninformed that this test would be taking place.  But were they?  Was this really a rogue operation?

What occurred is so close to the plot of my newest novel, The China Gambit, which will be published in January, that I had to remind myself the book was completed.  The plot wasn’t stolen from the headlines.

Then on June 4, Defense Secretary Gates had a response to the Chinese provocation.  Gates was in Singapore addressing a high ranking delegation of Asian defense ministers and military commanders, including China’s Minister of Defense, Gen. Liang Guanglie.  Gates threw down the gauntlet to China by declaring that the United States would not be denied access to key sea routes and lines of communication by “new and disruptive technologies” being developed by China.  And that the United States was developing a new air-sea battle strategy “in defense of our allies and vital interests” in Asia.[1]

Secretary Gates’s comments do not suggest that a military confrontation between the United States and China is inevitable.  However, it is certainly possible.  Our “vital interests,” using the Secretary’s term, could collide with those of China at a multitude of potential flashpoints.  One is Taiwan.

Beijing regards Taiwan as a renegade Chinese province, not an independent nation.  And the Chinese have reserved the right to retake Taiwan by force.  On the other hand, the United States not only has treaty commitments to defend Taiwan, but continues to sell arms to Taiwan despite Chinese objections.

It is possible that the decisionmakers in Beijing are biding their time on Taiwan while their military continues its exponential growth and the United States reduces its defense budget.  Under this scenario, some time in this decade Beijing may launch an attack to retake Taiwan.  Then the United States President will have a choice:  Going to war to honor our commitment to Taiwan, or backing down and virtually ceding military dominance in Asia to China.[2]

A second potential flashpoint is oil.[3] China has surpassed Japan as the second largest consumer and importer of oil. For both the United States and China, oil is the lifeblood of the economy, and oil is a limited resource, which moves on the seas and often through narrow straits.

Beijing has cultivated increasingly close ties with Iran, our avowed enemy, with both oil and military components.  This is part of China’s larger effort to tie up oil supplies around the world in a throwback to mercantilism.[4] A war over oil supply or its movement on the seas could easily occur.  All it would take is a bellicose Chinese leader who wants to hasten their economic domination by limiting the United States’ oil supply.

A third potential flashpoint is Japan.  The Chinese still have a score to settle with Japan for World War II, and there are plenty of issues between those two nations, including such topics as fishing and navigation rights.[5] Moreover, a Chinese attack against Japan would be a way of asserting Chinese hegemony in Asia.  At the same time, the United States has treaty obligations to Japan.  Thus, the United States could be drawn into the conflict.

In these and in other scenarios, war between the United States and China is not inevitable. However, it’s time we began confronting the risk of this occurring and revising our military preparedness and diplomacy to deal with this possibility.

The views in opinion pieces and letters do not necessarily reflect the views of Glenn Beck or Mercury Radio Arts.


* Allan Topol’s newest thriller novel, The China Gambit, will be published in January 2012.  Visit his website at www.AllanTopol.com.

[1] New York Times, A5, June 4, 2011.

[2] For a discussion of the Taiwan issue, see Glaser, Charles, Will China’s Rise Lead to War?, Foreign Affairs, March/April 2011, pp. 86-88.

[3] For a discussion of the pending squeeze of oil supplies, see Deffeyes, Kenneth S., Beyond Oil, Hill and Wang, 2006; and Simmons, Matthew R., Twilight In the Desert, Wiley, 2005.

[4] For a discussion of China’s aggressive approach to tying up world oil supplies, see China’s Energy Industry Makes a Bold Push Into Developed Markets, New York Times, B7, March 15, 2011.

[5] For a discussion of the depth of animosity between China and Japan, see, Chang, Yung and Halliday, Jon, Mao, Globalflair Ltd., 2005.

Sam Harris says there was 'absolutely' a 'Left-wing conspiracy' against Trump 2020 — but here's why it was 'warranted'

Image source: (Left) Video screenshot/ (Right) Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images

Sam Harris, a neuroscientist, philosopher, New York Times bestselling author, and host of the reputedly non-partisan and intellectually honest "Making Sense" podcast, just destroyed his own credibility, if not his entire career, in less than two minutes by finally admitting what he really thinks about free speech and censorship.

On the YouTube show and podcast "TRIGGERnometry," with hosts Konstantin Kisin and Francis Foster, Harris addressed censorship of the New York Post's now-infamous Hunter Biden laptop story ahead of the November 2020 election.

“Hunter Biden literally could have had the corpses of children in his basement, I would not have cared,” Harris stated. "Whatever the scope of Joe Biden's corruption is ... — getting kickbacks from Hunter Biden's deals in Ukraine ... or China — it is infinitesimal compared to the corruption we know Donald Trump is involved in."

Harris goes on to admit that suppressing the information found on Hunter Biden's laptop until after the was "absolutely" a "Left-wing conspiracy to deny the presidency to Donald Trump," but argued that "it was warranted."

"I'm sorry ... but you've just said something I really struggle with there," Kisin interjected. "You're saying you are content with a Left-wing conspiracy to prevent somebody being democratically reelected as president?"

"It was a conspiracy out in the open, but it doesn't matter what part's conspiracy, what part's out in the open," Harris responded. He went on to justify the election-influencing "Left-wing conspiracy" by suggesting that President Donald Trump was the equivalent of "an asteroid hurtling toward Earth."


On a recent episode of Glenn TV, Glenn Beck discussed the most recent findings in the Hunter Biden laptop scandal. Don't get distracted by the seemingly endless stream of scandalous photos and videos, Glenn warns, it's what's coming out about Hunter's overseas business dealings that should be all over the media, because Joe Biden is involved too.

Watch the video clip below or find the full episode here.


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The Left and their lapdog media are STILL busy looking for anyone and anything to blame for January 6. Their goal is to make "extremists" out of half of America, and Christians are next in line.

Faith is now on trial in the media, which dramatically reports lies like “a rise in a white Christian nationalist movement,” “The GOP: A party of Christian nationalists,” “It’s a radically anti-democratic ideology,” “Stamp the entire Republican Party as fans of this white Christian nationalism,” and “When they envision ‘one nation under God,’ it is a White Christian Nation.”

WRONG.

On "Glenn TV" Wednesday, Glenn Beck brings the definitive proof that America’s heritage is NOT “white Christian nationalism.” It’s important to understand – and be able to explain why – acknowledging the historical reality of America’s Christian heritage is NOT the same thing as “white Christian nationalism.”

The attacks to smear any recognition of Christian influence in America’s founding as a dangerous threat to democracy do not hold up to honest scrutiny. Do not accept this dangerous smear campaign, and share this fact-filled rebuttal with your friends.

Watch the full episode below:

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After getting WALLOPED in Wyoming, Liz Cheney thinks she could win the White House in 2024

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Wyoming Republicans have sent Rep. Liz Cheney — and the Republican Party — a "massive message" by voting her out of Congress, but it now looks like Cheney is trying to turn this into an Abraham Lincoln moment.

After seeming to compare herself to former President Abraham Lincoln, who "was defeated in elections for the Senate and the House before he won the most important election of all" during a speech Tuesday night, Cheney appeared on NBC's "TODAY" show Wednesday and told host Savannah Guthrie that she's "thinking about" a White House run.

Is it possible she didn't get the message?

On the radio program Wednesday, Glenn Beck and producer Stu Burguiere marveled at Cheney's tone-deaf response to Tuesday's devastating defeat, which, surprisingly, was not even the weirdest thing about this election.

"I think a humiliating and devastating loss puts you right where you need to be to launch a presidential campaign. Don't you think?" Glenn asked.

"Let me ask Beto O'Rourke. Hold on one second. I'll get him on the phone," Stu joked. "I mean, really, what is the constituency for a Liz Cheney presidency? She basically runs the state of Wyoming, and her family runs the state of Wyoming, and she got 29% of the vote there. So what is the constituency, other than the possibility of running as an independent candidate to shave votes from Donald Trump?"

"She's going to be brave and she's going to take that stage with Donald Trump ... She's going to be the one that takes him on and she will last all of about 45 seconds," Glenn said. "He will pummel her."

Watch the video clip below to catch more of the conversation. Can't watch? Download the podcast here.

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'Bye bye Liz Cheney': Donald Trump Jr. EASILY triggers liberals​​​​​​ with just one silly tweet

(Left) Photo by PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images/ (Right) SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

Donald Trump Jr. celebrated Wyoming Republican Rep. Liz Cheney's humiliating defeat in her state's GOP primary by releasing a 30-second video that was clearly intended to trigger the Trump-hating liberals on Twitter — and, naturally, it worked like a charm.

Rep. Cheney was defeated by Trump-backed challenger Harriet Hageman on Tuesday in the Republican primary for Wyoming's at-large congressional district.

Don Jr. took to Twitter to poke fun at Cheney's loss by posting a video montage of his father, former President Donald Trump, dancing with the caption, "Bye bye @Liz_Cheney. On the bright side at least you won’t have to pretend to be from Wyoming anymore."

Hoo boy, talk about kicking the hornets' nest. The reactions on Twitter were so predictably full of vulgarity, name-calling, and low-brow insults that we can't share most of them here, but you've seen it all before.

Don Jr. has had an interesting couple of days on Twitter. Just yesterday he was actually vindicated by fact-checkers (yes, you read that right) who called BS on a widely circulated but completely fabricated tweet that made it look like he was bashing his father's supporters.

Don Jr. joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Tuesday to weigh in on the FBI’s Mar-a-Lago raid and explain why he believes the Justice Department targeted his father and pedaled lies to justify it. He also gave his advice on what conservatives can do to peacefully and lawfully stand up against a system that's ignoring their rights.

Watch the video clip below. Can't watch? Download the podcast here.


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