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Chinese Military,Political and Social Superthread

MilEME09

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China continues to push Taiwan to the breaking point, continuous mass breaches force Taiwan to send aircraft to intercept, the more they do it, the less time crews have for maintenance, don't need to fight them in the sky if they all break down on the ground.
 

daftandbarmy

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Stand to!

The threat of China invading Taiwan is growing every day. What the U.S. can do to stop it.​

The Chinese military has already begun gray zone operations. An all-out attack on Taiwan looms if Beijing continues to escalate.

In his speech celebrating the Chinese Communist Party’s 100th anniversary last week, Chairman Xi Jinping proclaimed that China has never bullied or oppressed the people of any other country. Yet that is exactly what Beijing is doing to Taiwan, and its intensifying aggression toward the democratic island is increasingly raising concerns that it will try to take it by force.

The question is not whether the United States should defend Taiwan during war but how to prevent war in the first place. Now is the time to strengthen U.S.-Taiwan security cooperation.

For years, world leaders have been hesitant to respond to China’s military aggression in the region. But Beijing’s escalating rhetoric and military developments are pushing Washington and its allies to work together in ways never done before, such as the joint U.S.-Japanese military planning for a conflict with China over Taiwan. Just Monday, Japanese Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso declared that in the case of an attack on Taiwan, “Japan and the U.S. must defend Taiwan together."

“Unifying Taiwan by force” as a Chinese policy has existed since Chairman Mao Zedong coined the term. Though the onset of the Korean War spared Taiwan such a fate at that time, China’s unfulfilled aspirations continue to haunt the Communist Party. In recent years, Xi has tied the annexation of Taiwan, which split from the Chinese mainland amid civil war in 1949, to his “China dream” for the “great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.” In the eyes of Communist Party elites, unifying Taiwan is the final piece in making China great again.

The Communist Party now controls the most powerful military in Asia, the People’s Liberation Army, and Beijing’s increasing sense of urgency to annex Taiwan is evident in major changes to its military posture. Beijing understands that the United States is the most significant obstacle to its conquest of Taiwan, and has transformed its force to specifically offset U.S. operational advantages in the Pacific theater. To this end, the Chinese military has developed anti-ship ballistic missiles, attack submarines and an array of air and naval platforms for conducting saturation attacks to overwhelm enemies, all supported by space-based systems that make it more integrated and lethal.

 

Kirkhill

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Argentine military and intelligence cooperation with the Reagan Administration ended in 1982, when Argentina seized the British territory of the Falkland Islands in an attempt to quell domestic and economic unrest. The move was condemned by the US, who provided intelligence to the British government in its quest to regain control over the islands.

Falklands War[edit]​

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See also: Falklands War

Galtieri in the Falkland Islands
By April 1982, Galtieri had been in office for four months and his popularity was low.[15] On 2 April, on his orders, Argentine forces invaded the Falkland Islands, a United Kingdom territory subject to a long-standing Argentine claim.

Initially the invasion was popular in Argentina, and the anti-junta demonstrations were replaced by patriotic demonstrations in support of Galtieri.

Galtieri and most of his government mistakenly believed the UK would not respond militarily[16][14]

The British government led by the prime minister, Margaret Thatcher, dispatched a naval task force to retake the islands militarily if Argentina refused to comply with a United Nations resolution demanding an immediate Argentine withdrawal. Argentina did not comply with the resolution which resulted in a surrender to British forces on 14 June 1982, after which Argentine forces were escorted back to Argentina.[citation needed]

Defeat, fall from power, trial and prison[edit]​

On 14 June 1982, the Falklands' capital, Stanley, was retaken by British forces. Within days Galtieri was removed from power, and he spent the next 18 months at a well-protected country retreat while democracy was restored to Argentina. Along with other members of the former junta, he was arrested in late 1983 and charged in a military court with human rights violations during the Dirty War and with mismanaging the Falklands War. The Argentine Army's internal investigation, known as the Rattenbach report after the general who led it,[17] recommended that those responsible for the misconduct of the war be prosecuted under the Code of Military Justice.[18] In 1986 he was sentenced to twelve years in prison.[19]

Galtieri was cleared of the civil rights charges in December 1985, but (together with the Air Force and Navy commanders-in-chief) in May 1986 he was found guilty of mishandling the war and sentenced to prison. All three appealed in a civil court, and the prosecution appealed for heavier sentences. In November 1988 the original sentences were confirmed, and all three commanders were stripped of their rank. In 1989, Galtieri and 39 other officers of the dictatorship received President Carlos Menem's pardon.[20]
 

daftandbarmy

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That oughta learn the Argies..... :sneaky:

Sadly, no, it seems.


Germany rejects Argentina's claim on Falklands recognition​


Germany on Friday rejected a claim by Argentina that a request by airline Lufthansa to fly over Argentina en route to the Falkland Islands implied a recognition of them as Argentine territory.

Argentina and Britain have long disputed ownership of the Falklands, with Argentina claiming sovereignty over the British-run islands it calls the Malvinas. The dispute led to a brief war in 1982.

Lufthansa said it made the request for two flights supporting a polar research expedition because the normal route via Cape Town has been suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.

A German foreign ministry spokesman said the federal government’s position on the Falkland Islands had not changed.

“The activities of private companies cannot be attributed to the Federal Republic of Germany and have no international consequences,” he said.

 

brihard

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Stand to!

The threat of China invading Taiwan is growing every day. What the U.S. can do to stop it.​

The Chinese military has already begun gray zone operations. An all-out attack on Taiwan looms if Beijing continues to escalate.

In his speech celebrating the Chinese Communist Party’s 100th anniversary last week, Chairman Xi Jinping proclaimed that China has never bullied or oppressed the people of any other country. Yet that is exactly what Beijing is doing to Taiwan, and its intensifying aggression toward the democratic island is increasingly raising concerns that it will try to take it by force.

The question is not whether the United States should defend Taiwan during war but how to prevent war in the first place. Now is the time to strengthen U.S.-Taiwan security cooperation.

For years, world leaders have been hesitant to respond to China’s military aggression in the region. But Beijing’s escalating rhetoric and military developments are pushing Washington and its allies to work together in ways never done before, such as the joint U.S.-Japanese military planning for a conflict with China over Taiwan. Just Monday, Japanese Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso declared that in the case of an attack on Taiwan, “Japan and the U.S. must defend Taiwan together."

“Unifying Taiwan by force” as a Chinese policy has existed since Chairman Mao Zedong coined the term. Though the onset of the Korean War spared Taiwan such a fate at that time, China’s unfulfilled aspirations continue to haunt the Communist Party. In recent years, Xi has tied the annexation of Taiwan, which split from the Chinese mainland amid civil war in 1949, to his “China dream” for the “great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.” In the eyes of Communist Party elites, unifying Taiwan is the final piece in making China great again.

The Communist Party now controls the most powerful military in Asia, the People’s Liberation Army, and Beijing’s increasing sense of urgency to annex Taiwan is evident in major changes to its military posture. Beijing understands that the United States is the most significant obstacle to its conquest of Taiwan, and has transformed its force to specifically offset U.S. operational advantages in the Pacific theater. To this end, the Chinese military has developed anti-ship ballistic missiles, attack submarines and an array of air and naval platforms for conducting saturation attacks to overwhelm enemies, all supported by space-based systems that make it more integrated and lethal.

Kill the amphibs. If they can’t put troops with heavy equipment ashore, the rest is mostly academic. The thing with a war of naked aggression is they’d need to win decisively and quickly and then reestablish economic relations before it costs more than it’s worth.

As long as Taiwan and allies preserve the ability to deny safe crossing of the ‘moat’, an invasion is not viable.
 

MilEME09

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Kill the amphibs. If they can’t put troops with heavy equipment ashore, the rest is mostly academic. The thing with a war of naked aggression is they’d need to win decisively and quickly and then reestablish economic relations before it costs more than it’s worth.

As long as Taiwan and allies preserve the ability to deny safe crossing of the ‘moat’, an invasion is not viable.
That's why Taiwan is investing in fast attack boats that carry a pair of anti ship missiles. Overwhelm Chinese surface ships with mass volume of fire. Same thing on land, small trucks that are quick
 

MilEME09

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China is playing a dangerous game, and someone with an ichy trigger finger is all it takes to make this go pear shaped. At this point in my opinion we need to start standing upto China, before this becomes this generations war.
 

Weinie

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Kill the amphibs. If they can’t put troops with heavy equipment ashore, the rest is mostly academic. The thing with a war of naked aggression is they’d need to win decisively and quickly and then reestablish economic relations before it costs more than it’s worth.

As long as Taiwan and allies preserve the ability to deny safe crossing of the ‘moat’, an invasion is not viable.
China could very quickly disrupt/destroy, through a very precise missile campaign, C2, airfields, essential services, and naval bases , in Taiwan in a heartbeat. Amphibs would be launching as the missiles landed. The question then becomes, what do we do with a population that despises us, and will adopt a COIN approach.
 

The Bread Guy

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One shouldn't underestimate the megalomania/irrationality of a dictator.
I only take hope in the idea that for every dictator, there still tends to be folks in the systems willing to stick an ice pick into said dictator, if only to take over or rein him in - although how easy/hard that is to do varies from dictatorship to dictatorship.

Who knows who Xi Jinping's Beppo Römer is? 😉
 
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Edward Campbell

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Brad, Weenie and Bread Guy are all on the right track. Neither China, itself, nor Xi Jinping is invulnerable to those "events, dear boy, events" that bring down leaders, governments and, indeed, nations and empires. The very nature of oligarchical rule is its greatest weakness; the very nature of democracy, where leaders must test ideas and plans against the wishes/will of the people, is its greatest strength. There is no guarantee that America is in permanent, irreversible decline ~ it might be likely but it's not cast in stone. Equally, China's rise need not go on and on and on ... there will be obstacles and any leader may stumble and fall.
 

CBH99

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I only take hope in the idea that for every dictator, there still tends to be folks in the systems willing to stick an ice pick into said dictator, if only to take over or rein him in - although how easy/hard that is to do varies from dictatorship to dictatorship.

Who knows who Xi Jinping's Beppo Römer is? 😉
I think the CCP will be his version of Romer, just without the assassination part.

The CCP still has plenty of wise old men in it’s ranks, complimented by many enterprising young men with a much better ‘finger on the pulse’ of the world.

China can’t succeed if the rest of the world is boycotting China in one way or another.

A severe lack of tourism due to a legitimate fear of being taken political hostage, being excluded from various countries’ 5G networks and completions, many countries looking to have their goods manufactured in places other than China, China’s devastating impact on various environmental issues, etc.

Xi Jinping has done a great job of sparking Chinese potential on the world stage. China is now more powerful militarily and politically than ever before, and their citizens have enjoyed a rapidly growing middle class.

To China, Jinping will leave a great legacy that will be difficult to live up to. But the powers who pull the strings from the shadows probably realize that it is to the benefit of China that his time as President has to come to an end within the next few years.
 

Edward Campbell

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Xi Jinping has, I suspect, a "deliverology" problem. He has promised a lot ~ belt and road, global superpower, self-sufficiency, etc ~ but, thus far, he hasn't delivered much. He has, also, broken, decisively, with Deng Xiaoping and that may have been a major strategic blunder. (I say may because I'm really not sure how much of my analysis is based on good, broad reading and how much is just hope.)

I see, elsewhere, that the so-called 'Shanghai Gang,' which was Jiang Zemin's power-base, a resoundingly free-market group that hews closely to Deng's doctrine, is being openly, albeit cautiously critical of Xi's rule. I haven't heard anything similar from Hu Jintao's 'progressive' wing. The point is that there is internal opposition and, for whatever reason ~ maybe just a political pressure release valve being opened ~ it is making noise.

My (very personal) sense is that the Chinese Communist Party has been losing popularity over the past 25 years and the rate at which it is declining is accelerating. People have learned that they can join the middle class through their own efforts, without having to join the party. That makes it harder and harder to develop leadership cadres ~ a previously rigorous process ~ that are loyal to the top level. Unlike Mao, Deng Xiaoping encouraged (limited, to be sure) factionalism as he tried to broaden the base of the CCP. Xi Jinping seems, to me, to have tried to go back to Mao. My (very personal, again) sense is that Mao is not (and never really was) popular ~ feared? yes; popular? no! Dang, on the other hand, is still revered.

Maybe I'm reading the wrong journals; maybe my own (deeply held) prejudices are getting in the way. Anyway, my pretty low value 🪙.
 

daftandbarmy

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Meanwhile, there's a renewed commitment to communist ideals driving China even further away from the West, economically at any rate.

Capitalist Smackdown Sparks a $1 Trillion Reckoning​

After 40 years of allowing the market to play an expanding role in driving prosperity, China’s leaders have remembered something important — they’re Communists.

Xi Jinping smiled and hinted at a policy bombshell that would soon roil stock markets from Shanghai to New York.

It was mid-June, and the most powerful Chinese Communist Party leader since Mao Zedong was holding court at an after-school club for elementary students in the remote city of Xining. Acknowledging the growing pressure on students and their parents to spend time and money on private tutoring, Xi promised to ease their burden.

“We must not have out-of-school tutors doing things in place of teachers,” he said. “Now, the education departments are rectifying this.”

While Xi’s comments went largely unnoticed by global investors at the time, the crackdown on tutoring companies that followed has become the starkest illustration yet of the Chinese president’s commitment to a sweeping new vision for the world’s second-largest economy — one where the interests of investors take a distant third place to ensuring social stability and national security.

Call it progressive authoritarianism. From exhausted couriers in the gig economy, to stressed parents struggling with ever-rising housing prices and tuition fees, to small businesses battling tech monopolies, Xi is swinging the cudgel of state power in support of the squeezed middle class. These challenges aren’t unique to China, but the policy response has been.

Weeks after Xi’s school visit, China said private education had been “hijacked by capital” and ordered tutoring companies to become non-profits, accelerating a selloff that at its most extreme erased $1.5 trillion from Chinese stocks and dented the portfolios of some of the biggest names in global finance.

Combined with new requirements for data security reviews ahead of overseas IPOs, directives for food-delivery firms to pay staff a living wage and escalating curbs on unaffordable housing, the tutoring crackdown has triggered a growing realization that the old rules of Chinese business no longer apply, and left investors wondering which sector will be the next target for regulators.

For decades, even as they kept strict control over strategic sectors like banking and oil, China’s leaders gave entrepreneurs and investors freedom to drive the adoption of new technologies and open up fresh opportunities for growth. Deng Xiaoping set the tone back in the mid-1980s when he said it was OK if some got rich first. Now, with growth slowing and relations with the U.S. increasingly hostile, they’re emphasizing different goals: common prosperity and national security.

“This marks a watershed shift in China’s policy priorities,” said Liao Ming, Beijing-based founder of Prospect Avenue Capital, which manages $500 million. “The government is going after industries that are creating the most social discontent.”

And, true to their Communist roots, China’s leaders have no problem trampling on the interests of venture capital, private equity or stock investors when they conflict with its long-term development plan. Liao said that focus is now on what has been dubbed the “three big mountains”: the crushing burden of payments for education, healthcare and property.

For now, tech is still the main target. In a flurry of action Friday, authorities summoned the country’s largest technology companies for a lecture on data security, vowed better oversight of overseas share listings and accused ride-hailing companies of stifling competition.

New Development Phase​

China this year began a “new development phase,” according to Xi. It puts three priorities ahead of unfettered growth:
  • National security, which includes control of data and greater self-reliance in technology
  • Common prosperity, which aims to curb inequalities that have soared in recent decades
  • Stability, which means tamping down discontent among China’s middle class
If Xi executes on his vision — and that is still a big if — there will be important beneficiaries: stretched workers, stressed parents, and squeezed start-ups.

But so far, the losers have been more visible: tech billionaires and their backers in the stock market, highly leveraged property companies including China Evergrande Group, and foreign venture capital firms that had hoped to take Chinese companies public in the U.S.
For international investors, many of whom got burned by this year’s regulatory onslaught, the old rule was that to make money in China it was necessary to align with the Communist Party’s priorities. The dawning realization is that finding common ground may be increasingly hard to do.

Companies and investors have been “behind the curve” when it comes to anticipating regulation in China, Ren Yi, a Harvard-educated social media commentator known as Chairman Rabbit, wrote in an online commentary that has received more than 100,000 views. Education researcher Feng Siyuan says investors should have seen the education regulations coming: Xi had said more than two years ago the sector shouldn’t be profit driven.

Part of Xi’s motivation is desire for popular support ahead of the once-in-a-decade leadership transition next year, where he is expected to buck tradition and stay on as party chief for a third term. Growing discontent, including sporadic strikes among delivery workers, have rattled the stability-obsessed party.

Wearing the distinctive yellow shirt of Chinese delivery service Meituan, whose profits have boomed during the pandemic, 22-year-old motorbike courier Mr. Tang complains about the lack of medical insurance. “There’s nothing I can do about it if Meituan doesn’t pay for it,” he added. “The wealth gap between people in this society is too big”.

The downside for investors is that a bigger slice of the pie for workers like Mr. Tang has to come at the expense of the owners of capital. Meituan lost as much as $63 billion of market value last week after Beijing ordered it to improve worker protections.

China’s leaders won’t be shedding tears for the losses of foreign stock holders. The bigger risk for Beijing: Heavy state intervention might dampen the animal spirits that drive private investment and reverse an integration with the global economy that has helped drive growth in the last four decades.

Tech Trauma​


Following the logic of the prison yard, Beijing signaled the start of the new era for entrepreneurs and investors by taking a swing at the biggest inmate: Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. founder Jack Ma. On Nov. 3, the initial public offering of Ant Group Co. — the finance arm of Ma’s empire, which was set to surpass Saudi Aramco as the biggest public listing of all time — was unceremoniously squashed.

The regulatory pace intensified after December, when a top economic planning meeting chaired by Xi vowed to rein in the “disorderly expansion of capital,” signaling the move against Alibaba was part of a wider campaign backed by the apex of Chinese power.

At first, investors thought the phrase referred to anti-monopoly efforts aimed at shrinking the power of tech giants, which had converted their vast profits into venture-capital investments spanning almost every sector. That narrative was bolstered by the 18.2 billion yuan fine slapped on Alibaba by anti-monopoly authorities in April.

But developments in recent weeks suggest the slogan goes further. In some sectors, private capital, especially foreign capital, may not be wanted at all.

At the start of July, China’s cybersecurity regulator said tech firms with more than a million users would need to pass a review before listing overseas. Regulators made an example of Didi Global Inc — China’s answer to Uber — which had squeaked through a U.S. IPO just before the new regulations, removing it from app stores in the country and hammering its valuation.

Later that month, China’s top administrative body, the State Council, ordered companies teaching the school curriculum in the $100 billion after-school tutoring sector to become non-profits and banned them from pursuing IPOs or taking foreign capital. The semi-legal Variable Interest Entity, or VIE, structure adopted by the likes of Alibaba to go public abroad was singled out for top-level criticism for the first time.
While investors in the tutoring sector — a focus of major funds from Temasek to Warburg Pincus — lamented the new rules, many Chinese parents welcomed them.


Beijing is betting that the gravitational pull of an economy that will likely continue to generate more billions of dollars of growth opportunities than any other gives them leeway to throw their weight around, even if some global investors get whacked in the process.

At least some of the evidence suggests they might be right. Foreign investment continues to flow into China, including through domestic bond and stock markets which continue opening to overseas capital. For all the talk of decoupling, China’s exports to the U.S. keep rising.

Still, structural shifts in policy have a slow burn impact. The benefits of pro-market reforms culminating in China’s 2001 entry to WTO played out over the best part of a decade before the 2008 financial crisis halted the export boom. The costs of Beijing’s new turn away from the market will also take time to show. Even if the Communist Party continues to deliver on growth, the focus on common prosperity suggests investors will have to settle for a smaller share of the spoils.


 
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