Op/Ed: The China Threat

The China Threat

 

By Allan Topol*

President Obama’s trip to the Asia Pacific Region in mid-November of 2011 demonstrated that at long last leaders in the administration recognize the military threat posed by China.  Unfortunately, Obama’s language and his actions are not sufficient to persuade China and other nations of the Region that the United States is a credible counterweight to China’s growing military power.

For five decades after the end of the Second World War, the United States has been far and away the dominant power, militarily and economically, in the Pacific.  While the U.S. maintained bases in Japan, Guam, and South Korea, except for the wars in Korea and Vietnam, no one threatened American interests or military superiority.  The U.S. and Japan have had an effective economic partnership; and Tokyo hasn’t made an effort to rebuild its military following the disastrous conclusion to the Second World War.

The United States was also the largest trading partner with the nations in the region. American Naval vessels moved freely in the Pacific.  The U.S. was the de facto policeman to ensure freedom of navigation throughout the entire area, including the critical navigation lanes of the South China Sea.  United States Admiral Robert F. Willard, Commander of the United States Pacific Command, has stated that these navigation lanes “account for $5.3 trillion in bilateral annual trade, of which $1.2 trillion is American.”[i]

All of this has changed in the last decade with the emergence of China as a Superpower.  The Chinese economy has been growing at roughly a ten percent annual rate.  China has become the largest trading partner with most of the countries in the region, undercutting American economic influence.  At the same time, the Chinese have undertaken one of the largest military expansions in history.  China’s defense spending has risen by twelve percent or more a year during this decade.[ii]

The Chinese now have 2.29 million active duty forces compared with 1.56 for the U.S.  Moreover, the Chinese arms expansion is characterized by quality as well as quantity, leaving no doubt that Beijing will be able to challenge the United States for military control in the Pacific.

In January of 2011, at the time of then U.S. Secretary of Defense Gates’ visit to Beijing, the Chinese, in a bold in your face move, tested their new stealth jet which will rival the U.S.’s F-22 Raptor, the world’s only operational stealth fighter.  Larger than the F-22, with bigger fuel tanks, the Chinese jet will fly higher, faster, and with less chance of detection.[iii]

On the seas, China has created the largest force of submarines and amphibious warfare ships in the Pacific.  It has launched its first aircraft carrier and is developing long range anti-ship missiles.[iv]

Moreover, China has been using its new military prowess for commercial advantage.  The Chinese Navy has destroyed oil and gas exploration equipment being used by Vietnam and the Philippines in maritime areas in which China is making a power grab for these natural resources.  The Chinese have also fired threatening missiles in the direction of Taiwan, which the United States has a duty to defend.[v]

Against the backdrop of these developments, commentators have warned of the risk of war between the United States and China.[vi]  In my new novel, The China Gambit, a Chinese General’s attempt to cut off the flow of oil to the United States, sets China and the U.S. on the path to war.

Despite all of this, the Obama Administration has until the President’s November trip to the Asia Pacific Region, been surprisingly mute about the increasing Chinese military threat in the Pacific.  Then suddenly, Obama focused on the issue.  Unfortunately, his rhetoric was weak.

Despite efforts by Administration officials to strengthen the message, here is what Obama said: “The notion that we fear China is mistaken.  Rather, the United States wants a clear set of principles that all of us can abide by so all of us can succeed.”

Then later, “If Beijing does not respect international rules, we will send a clear message to them that we think that they need to be on track in terms of accepting the rules and responsibilities that come with being a world power.”[vii]

This mumbo-jumbo was accompanied by equally weak action.  The United States will be sending 250 Marines to Australia for 6 month tours starting next summer.  No American base will be established.  They will be housed in Australian facilities.  Their mission was not specified.  Sounds like a vacation.

The size of the American force is so small that the move didn’t even evoke a strong rebuke from Beijing.  Instead, a Chinese spokesman merely questioned whether this “is in line with the common interest” of countries in the region.

It is unfortunate that Obama wasn’t stronger.  The Chinese leaders have watched the United States withdraw from Iraq leaving behind an unstable country.  They are following the ambivalent U.S. war effort in Afghanistan, which is increasingly criticized by a growing war weary American populace.

As our largest creditor, Beijing is following the United States financial travails, which are likely to result in a reduced defense budget.  In order to send a credible message to Beijing, Obama had to say more.  He had to do more than he did on his November trip.

We are dealing with the same party in Beijing which perpetrated the harsh massacre in Tiananmen’s Square.  The Chinese leaders are tough minded people who will not back down as a result of wishy-washy language and meaningless symbolic acts.

They will consider Obama’s words and action a green light for full steam ahead in their arrogant Pacific expansion.  They will never believe that the United States is prepared to go to war in the Pacific in defense of our allies and comme



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

[i] New York Times, November 16, 2011, p. A14.

[ii] Barron’s, June 27, 2011, p. 21.

[iii] Barron’s, June 27, 2011, p. 22.

[iv] USA Today, July 28, 2011, p. 2A.

[v] USA Today, July 28, 2011, p. 2A.

[vi] Glaser Charles, Will China’s Rise Lead to War?, Foreign Affairs, March/April 2011, pp. 86-88.

[vii] The quotes of Obama’s speech are from the Washington Post, November 17, 2011, p. A10.

Political commentator Bill O'Reilly joined the Glenn Beck radio program on Friday made an important prediction about President Joe Biden's chance of reelection in 2024.

O'Reilly told Glenn that former President Donald Trump was brought down because of COVID. "if COVID had not appeared, O'Reilly stated, "he [Trump] would have won reelection."

O'Reilly went on to predict that like Trump, President Joe Biden would lose reelection because of COVID. People saw a president who could not put out an intelligent fact-based message about COVID and people will remember that," he explained.

O'Reilly later added that "Trump and Biden are one-termers because of COVID."

Watch the video below to catch more of the conversation:

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Critical race theory: Marxism is a religion

Uttam Sheth/Flickr

Marx didn't actually tell his followers that the system needed to be destroyed. And it's not what Marx actually believed. Very few Marxists actually understand what Marx laid out.

Marxism isn't a list of demands and instructions. It's Marx's attempt to tell the future. Some of it he got right, most he got wrong. For example, he predicted the rise of automation.

Believe it or not, Marx was not an anti-capitalist. If anything, he revered it.

In a letter to Engels, he complained that too many people misunderstood his message, that his plan is to merge with capitalism. To make it new. He wanted to reify his brand of socialism, reify is a Marxist term, actually. It basically means to make an abstract idea concrete.

Marx didn't hate capitalism. He actually thought it was necessary. And he knew communism would never happen without the aid of capitalism.

Marx didn't hate capitalism. He actually thought it was necessary.

From there, he takes these ideas to some weird conclusions. Horrible conclusions. The main one being revolution.

What does the first phase of the Marxist revolution look like? How will we know if it has started? How can we tell if it's already begun? Marx's idea of the "dictatorship of the proletariat," where the working class would rise up in revolution and earn their freedom.

But what did Marx mean by freedom? Like so much of Marxism, it involves giving up your individuality, in service to the collective: "Only in community with others does each individual have the means of cultivating his gifts in all directions; only in the community, therefore, is personal freedom possible."

That's from his book The German Ideology, which he co-wrote with Friedrich Engels, the guy who paid all of his bills: "Free competition, which is based on the idea of individual freedom, simply amounts to the relation of capital to itself as another capital."

His idea here is that capital ruins any idea of freedom or individuality. And competition is what he uses as proof. In other words, Marx's definition of freedom has nothing to do with actual freedom, freedom as we know it.

He wrote, in Capital: "It is not individuals who are set free by free competition; it is, rather, capital which is set free."

He's saying that Capital manipulates our individual freedom and forces us to exploit ourselves. For someone who didn't believe in God, he sure had some fanciful ideas about the forces that control the universe.

For someone who didn't believe in God, he sure had some fanciful ideas about the forces that control the universe.

Marxists have always argued that capitalism is a religion. That our debt to capital is no different than our debt to God. Critical Theorist Walter Benjamin wrote an entire book called Capitalism as Religion, and wrote that capitalism is "the first case of a cult that creates guilt, not atonement."

There were many strains of socialism before Marx. There were entire movements, named after socialist and anarchist philosophers. But Marx was the one who figured it out, with the help of a rotating cast of people paying for his sloth, of course.

Marx's influence on socialism was so profound that socialism was practically re-named in honor of Marx. Marx has been deified.

He created a utopian society. Very hypothetical. It requires a working class that is devoted to daily readings of The Communist Manifesto.

This assumes that people who work all day — at a real job, where they can't just sit on the couch all day as Marx did — even have the energy to read dense theory when they get home.

Marx made a religion.

This post is part of a series on critical race theory. Read the full series here.

The Capitol riot was foolish and tragic, but Pelosi's Select Committee "investigation" on the January 6 "insurrection" has devolved into a show trial complete with bad tears and bad acting. But this is just a charade designed to distract us.

What's going on behind closed doors is truly nefarious. The Biden White House and the U.S. national security apparatus are seizing that event to redefine domestic terrorism and expand the powers of government to prevent it. There is an alarming blueprint for sweeping government action called the "National Strategy for Countering Domestic Terrorism," put together by the National Security Council.

On his Wednesday night special this week, Glenn Beck exposes the collusion between the Biden administration and Big Tech to surveil, root out, and silence America's deplorables – all in the name of national security.

Watch the full "Glenn TV" episode below:

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Terry Trobiani owns Gianelli's Drive Thru in Prairie Grove, Illinois, where he put up a row of American flags for the Fourth of July. But the city claimed he was displaying two of them improperly and issued him a $100 ticket for each flag.

Terry joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Tuesday to explain what he believes really happened. He told Glenn that, according to city ordinance, the American flag is considered "ornamental" and should therefore have been permitted on a federal holiday. But the city has now classified the flag as a "sign."

"Apparently, the village of Prairie Grove has classified the American flag as a sign and they've taken away the symbol of the American flag," Terry said. "So, as a sign, it falls under their temporary sign ordinance, which prohibits any flying, or any positioning of signs on your property — and now this includes the American flag. [...] The only way I could fly the American flag on my property is if I put it on a permanent 20 to 30-foot flagpole, which they have to permit."

Terry went on to explain how the city is now demanding an apology for his actions, and all after more than a year of small-business crushing COVID restrictions and government mandates.

"COVID was tough," Terry stated. "You know, we're in the restaurant business. COVID was tough on us. We succeeded. We made it through. We cut a lot of things, but we never cut an employee. We paid all our employees. I didn't take a paycheck for a year just to keep our employees on, because it was that important to me to keep things going. And, you know, you fight for a year, and you beat a pandemic, and then you have this little municipality with five trustees and a president, who just have no respect for small businesses. And right now, what I see is they have no respect for the republic and the United States ... I think it's terrible. The direction that government, at all levels, have taken us to this point, it's despicable."

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