BusinessAre We “On the Brink”?

Are We “On the Brink”?

by

Howard Bloom

Taiwan’s defense chief, Chiu Kuo-Cheng, has revealed that American troops are permanently stationed in Taiwan.  

Our soldiers are there to train Taiwan’s military in the use of things like drones.  However, some of those troops are less than two miles from China’s border. 

A headline in London’s The Express warns that this puts the “world” on “the brink.” 

But that’s not all. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken met with President Ferdinand Marcos of the Philippines Tuesday, March 19th, at a time when Manila and Beijing are slamming ships into each other over China’s claim that it owns all 1.3 million square miles of the South China Sea. Blinken told Marcos and his foreign minister that America’s agreement to defend the Philippines against China, if necessary, is “iron clad.” 

Meanwhile, in the last three weeks the Houthis of Yemen sunk a British cargo ship and claimed to have attacked two American warships in the Red Sea.  The war Hamas started in Gaza is also grinding ahead.  What’s more, headlines blare that “China and Iran-linked cyber attackers” are “targeting US water utilities.”

At the same time, the Ukrainians are running out of artillery shells but have developed advanced drones and self-driving speed boats that have taken out three Russian oil refineries so far this year and have sunken or critically damaged a third of Russia’s Black Sea fleet. What’s more, using American weapons, the Ukrainians have downed three quarters of a billion dollars’ worth of Russia’s warplanes.  

And Africa’s Niger, a country where we had a quarter of a billion-dollar military base that the Intercept describes as “the linchpin of the U.S. military’s archipelago of bases in North and West Africa,” has tossed us out and embraced a new patron, Russia.

What pins all these incidents together?  As you know, China, Russia, and the sponsor of Hamas and the Houthis, Iran, are linked in an unspoken military alliance, the Axis of Evil. 

More important, two countries are competing for leadership of the entire global order.  That order was set up by the United States after World War II.  It has held firm for nearly 80 years and has prevented world wars. 

But China harkens back to the days from 200 bc to 1800 when it felt that the whole world was bowing at its feet, the days when China was the world’s biggest exporter of manufactured goods, the days when China felt it was the world’s center.  And it wants that central position back. 

Which means that China aims to shove America out of the role of the world’s guardian and take over the position as top dog.  The US calls what it built a rule-based order.  Now China wants to make the rules.  And those will be rules dictated by the Chinese Communist Party. 

Rules that eradicate what Xi Jinping, China’s dictator, calls “Western ideas.” With human rights and the rule of law at the top of the list of ideas Xi wants to wipe out.

Monday March 18, Xi Jinping hit the cover of one of the biggest newspapers in China, the state-owned People’s Daily, with a speech explaining just how easily the competition with the United States for global leadership could spill over into war. Said Xi, “Western countries led by the United States have implemented all-around containment, encirclement and suppression of China.” 

What’s worse, these Western countries have hampered China’s growth.  Or, as Xi puts it, they have “brought unprecedented severe challenges to our country’s development.”  That, to China, is unacceptable. 

Tuesday, Xi’s new foreign minister, Qin Gang, spelled out what Xi’s words meant.  Quin said, “The United States actually wants China not to fight back when hit or cursed, but this is impossible.”  Added Mr. Qin, ““If the U.S. doesn’t step on the brakes but continues to speed up, no guardrail can stop the derailment.” 

Concluded Xi Jinping himself, ““We must remain calm, maintain concentration, seek progress while maintaining stability, take active actions, unite as one, and dare to fight.”  In other words, if the US continues to restrain China, the result could be war.

References: 

https://www.the-express.com/news/world-news/131715/taiwan-usa-troops-china

http://eng.chinamil.com.cn/WORLD_209198/WorldMilitaryNews/16291488.html

https://www.newsweek.com/taiwan-confirms-us-troops-front-line-islands-near-china-1880865

https://www.reuters.com/business/energy/russian-refineries-targeted-by-ukrainian-drones-2024-03-13/

https://www.businessinsider.com/russia-may-finally-take-black-sea-fleet-losses-seriously-ukraine-2024-3

https://apnews.com/article/us-philippines-blinken-marcos-south-china-sea-0c39aa94e32469f3d608561c2c0f167c

Blinken underscores ‘ironclad’ support for the Philippines as it clashes… Secretary of State Antony Blinken has underscored Washington’s “ironclad commitment” to help defend the Philippi…

https://patrioticpost.com/ukraine-reports-destruction-of-700m-worth-of-russian-aircraft/

Ukraine Reports Destruction Of $700M Worth Of Russian Aircraft | Patriot…

von Glahn, Richard, The Economic History of China: From Antiquity to the Nineteenth Century, Cambridge University Press, 2016.

______

Howard Bloom of the Howard Bloom Institute has been called the Einstein, Newton, and Freud of the 21st century by Britain’s Channel 4 TV.  One of his seven books–Global Brain—was the subject of a symposium thrown by the Office of the Secretary of Defense including representatives from the State Department, the Energy Department, DARPA, IBM, and MIT.  His work has been published in The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Wired, Psychology Today, and the Scientific American.  He does news commentary at 1:06 am Eastern Time every Wednesday night on 545 radio stations on Coast to Coast AM.  For more, see http://howardbloom.institute.

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