Cold war with China 1

Yes.

Cold war with China needs no question mark. It is not a question – should there be, or should there not be …?

It is a fact. It is a war even longer than the one in Afghanistan.

Colonel Richard Kemp (who commanded British forces in Northern Ireland, Afghanistan, Iraq and the Balkans) writes at Gatestone:

Commentators and politicians today worry that the current situation might trigger a new cold war with China. They fail to understand that, in a similar but much more far-reaching pattern to the jihadist conflict, China has been fighting a cold war against the West for decades, while we have refused to recognize what is going on….

Few in the West fully recognize the threat to our own economies, security and liberty. Many who do refuse to speak out for four reasons: 

First, fear of coming into China’s crosshairs, provoking economic harm or character assassination.

Second, fear of accusations of racism, a concern readily exploited by the Chinese state whose own egregious racism is only too obvious.

Third, belief that our liberal values can change those that oppose us. The hope that Chinese exposure to free trade, including entry into the WTO in 2001, would have this effect has proven woefully misguided and served only to strengthen Beijing’s oppressive regime.

Fourth, many political leaders, businessmen, academics and journalists have been bought and paid for by Beijing whether by financial incentive or blackmail.

How can the West fight back? Although still militarily and economically inferior to the US, China is a formidable and growing economic power, interwoven with Western economies to an unprecedented degree. We must begin to divest from and sanction China, repatriate and use alternative sources of manufacturing and technology, restrict capital investment there and curb Chinese investment here, especially in our infrastructure.

We must re-invigorate and develop our own technology, much long abandoned to the Chinese juggernaut. We must enforce the norms of international trade and act vigorously to prevent and penalize China’s orgy of industrial theft that has gone largely unchallenged for decades. We must push back globally against Beijing’s imperialism and propaganda wherever it occurs.

But what if cold war with China leads to hot war with China?

We must also prepare for military conflict, with an emphasis on deterring Chinese aggression.

America will have to lead the fightback as it did previously in the cold war [with Soviet Russia], but success will require Europe and our allies around the world to stand with them for the long term. This is not a party political issue, but must become a fundamental element of enduring Western grand strategies. This is the task of decades and will be high-risk and costly. The alternative is to remain on the hook and in hock to the Chinese communist state and let future generations suffer the incalculable consequences of our continued purblind inaction.

Tom Basile, writing at American Greatness, thinks cold war with China is yet to begin in ernest on our side, but certainly will, and should be unhesitatingly engaged.

Our struggle will not be against China alone, but also against Russia and Iran.

 We shouldn’t be afraid of a new Cold War. …

Economic alliances that have made the Western democracies weaker, less focused, and often playing into the hands of authoritarian competitors seeking to expand their power.

We believed that opening China would produce a stronger level of trust, cooperation, and liberalization. …

It has not done so.

We genuinely wanted the Russian experiment in democracy to succeed. It hasn’t and we need to accept that. …

We may have wanted it to succeed, but not all of us expected that it would.

For decades we failed to make Iran pay for financing global Islamic terrorist networks that have taken countless innocent lives and destabilized countries around the world. The Obama Administration’s capitulation to the mullahs was perhaps the lowest point in American foreign policy of the last half-century.

Agreed.

The troika of China, Russia, and Iran represent a significant and present threat to the safety and security of the free world.

That requires an aggressive response.

Agreed again.

The Chinese, through their Belt and Road Initiative, have set about conquering Africa.

The three are also making inroads in the Western Hemisphere as well, including information manipulation that reaches the eyes and ears of Americans every day.

China, Russia, and Iran will act with insidious intent to damage the United States. Having an economic, military, and diplomatic counter-posture is absolutely critical.

America should not fight the “troika” alone, but with Western allies:

From 1960-1975, the United States threatened or imposed economic sanctions more than 25 times, not counting U.S. support for U.N. sanctions against South Africa and other nations. We invested in the developing world to provide an incentive for those nations to align with the West. The Cold War promoted enterprise-based, free-market capitalism that strengthened our democratic allies. The military effort led to significant technological advancements.

Redrawing the lines of engagement now would mean igniting the ability of the United States and Western economies again to consolidate economic power. The economic opportunity for American and European countries for freezing out Huawei is enormous.

But the opportunity is not being seized by America’s closest European ally. Britain is obstinately sticking to its contract with Huawei to build its G5 network, careless of the risk that doing so further empowers the Communist Chinese enemy.

A new Cold War means creating new trading blocs and incentives to dissuade free nations from supporting authoritarian competitors. It means governments making the tough decision to economically marginalize these regimes. Such a move may increase consumer prices but can lead to a restoration of millions of American jobs, economic growth in the developing world, and protecting superior Western innovation from piracy.

During the Cold War [with Soviet Russia], a vast majority of Americans understood that it was important for the United States and its allies to counter Communism. We cannot allow the moral relativism of the Left in America today to make us timid in the face of real threats to our security and individual liberty, not to mention the sovereignty of other nations.

Sure, there was debate and protest over disarmament and détente. Of course, there were those who were opposed our strong anti-Communist stance and Ronald Reagan’s “We win, they lose” posture, and many who railed against the so-called military-industrial complex.

Today, empowered by the media and digital platforms, those forces clearly have a strong voice.

Nonetheless, America’s destiny is—as it has always been—to be a beacon of freedom and prevent the human race from being dominated by authoritarianism that saps the soul of the individual, devalues life, and prevents human advancement for the sake of ruling elites.

Prevent the whole of the human race from falling under oppressive government? That is a very large assignment. Is it really America’s mission? And if so, is it possible?

Those who today fancy themselves experts in the media will say we can’t shift our posture in such a fashion. …

We would do well to remember our history. In the past century, hundreds of thousands of Americans died fighting the Germans, only to see Germany become one of our staunchest allies. We used the atomic bomb to obliterate two Japanese cities, yet today Japan is one of our closest trading partners.

A new Cold War-style approach to China, Russia, and Iran is a call for America reconstituting the strong allied bloc it once led and rejecting the free-for-all globalist movement that turns a blind eye to enemies allegedly for the sake of cheap products.

America first needs to mean America leads again.

[The pandemic of] COVID-19 can indeed reset the world order placing us in the familiar position of making bold moves to protect freedom. What remains to be seen is whether we have the courage to lead again.

Using economic and if necessary military power to fight China, preferably with the co-operation of Western allies, is one thing – necessary and possible.

But America resetting the world order?

That requires a question mark.

Posted under Africa, China, Iran, Russia, Soviet Union, United States, War by Jillian Becker on Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Tagged with , , ,

This post has 1 comment.

Permalink

Assad’s sarin gas: the British connection 0

Sarin is made by combining the fluorine in sodium fluoride with carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and phosphorous. It is considered one of the world’s most dangerous chemical warfare agents. It disrupts the nervous system, over-stimulating muscles and vital organs. It is more than 500 times as toxic as cyanide. It can be inhaled as a gas or absorbed through the skin. In high doses, sarin suffocates its victims by paralyzing the muscles around their lungs, and one drop can kill in minutes.

The sodium fluoride was supplied to Syria by British firms, according to The Mail on Sunday:

British companies sold chemicals to Syria that could have been used to produce the deadly nerve agent that killed 1,400 people …

Between July 2004 and May 2010 the Government issued five export licences to two companies, allowing them to sell Syria sodium fluoride, which is used to make sarin.

The Government last night admitted for the first time that the chemical was delivered to Syria – a clear breach of international protocol on the trade of dangerous substances that has been condemned as ‘grossly irresponsible’.

The sales were made at a time when President Bashar Assad was strongly suspected to be stockpiling the chemical weapons that have caused an international crisis.

The UK firms delivered sodium fluoride to a Syrian cosmetics company for what they claim were legitimate purposes. But intelligence experts believe President Assad’s regime uses such companies to divert chemicals into its weapons programme.

Thomas Docherty MP, a member of the Commons Arms Export Controls Committee, said: ‘These are very disturbing revelations uncovered by The Mail on Sunday regarding the provision of sodium fluoride to Syria. At no time should we have allowed President Assad’s regime to get its hands on this substance. Previously we thought that while export licences had been granted, no chemicals were actually delivered. Now we know that in the build-up to the Syrian civil war, UK companies – with the backing of our Government – were supplying this potentially lethal substance. While the last export licence was issued in May 2010, these licences are obtained prior to manufacture and the industry standard is for four to five months to pass before the chemicals are delivered. So we are looking at late 2010 for the British supplies of sodium fluoride reaching Syria. The Government has some very serious questions to answer.” …

Last night the BIS [Department for Business, Innovation and Skills] refused to answer questions regarding how much sodium fluoride was bought and sold – or which companies were involved.

Intelligence expert Richard Kemp … said last night: “President Assad would undoubtedly have diverted legitimately exported supplies of sodium fluoride in order to make chemical weapons. He would have absolutely no qualms about doing this, and his practice was well known to British diplomats and our intelligence agencies. In this light, it is grossly irresponsible of BIS to have approved these licences from 2004 to 2010.”

Scientists at the UK’s military research laboratory at Porton Down proved that sarin was used in the chemical attack on August 21 after testing items of clothing recovered from the scene.

The US says the attack, near Damascus, killed 1,429 people, including 426 children.

We don’t trust the figures, given out by Secretary of State John Kerry, but we do believe people in Syria were gassed with sarin.

And yesterday, EU officials meeting in Lithuania announced that they are convinced that the chemical attack was the work of President Assad’s forces rather than any opposition fighters.

We wouldn’t trust them either.

Last night a senior scientist condemned the sale, as Syria is one of just five countries to have refused to sign protocols against the use of chemical weapons. The other nations not to have signed up to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) accords are North Korea, South Sudan, Egypt and Angola.

Britain has done this before. According to the report it sold fluoride to Saddam Hussein, through intermediaries, and Saddam Hussein made the lethal gas out of it with which he massacred his people.

Last night a BIS spokesman said: ‘The five licences were granted to two UK exporters. We cannot publish their names for reasons of commercial confidentiality. The end users were two Syrian commercial companies. The quantities of sodium fluoride involved were commensurate with the stated end use in the production of cosmetics and there was no reason to link them with Syria’s chemical weapons programme. This remains the case.”

But remember – BIS is a British Government agency.

It is also worth noting, we think, that sarin gas is easy to manufacture.

Which means that if Assad hands over his stock of it into something vaguely described as “international safekeeping”, it will make the world not a jot safer.

Assad can make it again. British firms can find a way of getting sodium fluoride to him again (and we suspect they probably will).

Any nation intent on making it can make it.

And what is there to deter them? Barack Obama’s incoherent speeches?