Crosspost with Fort Russ – By Joaquin Flores
WITH ADDENDUM COMMENT BY PATRICE GREANVILLE
One thing that China was very careful of, in connection with this ‘peace and development’ message, was not to make this celebration nominally commemorating the Victory over Japanese occupation into an anti-Japanese event in any way.
The Victory over the Japanese invasion and occupation of China in the WWII period is indeed only part of the story here, but it is also one of the most delicate parts. China has a ‘positive’ and fraternal official position towards Japan today, and Chinese and Japanese joint projects along with bi-lateral trade have only grown in recent decades.
“never seek hegemony or expansion. It will never inflict its past suffering on any other nation”.
Indeed, today we saw a typically despicable write up in the Guardian about this event. They have ‘conjured up’ an anti-Japanese narrative where there was none. One would imagine that in making such a claim, they would quote some of the ‘anti-Japanese’ remarks by the Chinese premiere. They couldn’t, because there weren’t any.
The New York Times, in classic form, gave us this gem:
The psychological connotation here of this discursive trap is that a ‘grip on power’ only makes sense in its implicit meaning, in the face of unpopularity and instability, and is meant to suggest that one is losing one’s grip on power.
Xi assumed his role as president only in March of 2013, and will be followed by the next president.
But the logic and narrative of western Media, operating at an elementary school student’s level of cognitive understanding (and hopped up on Ritalin and coca-cola), reduces all societies, historical events, political processes etc., to the personalities of individuals. And their undying quest for power, naturally. Certainly this is not a case of projection (ha!).
Perhaps this fits nicely in describing Charles Taylor’s Liberia, but certainly seems like a snapshot from some twisted alternative universe when describing China.
Commentary by Patrice Greanville
Imperial hubris everywhere we look, but no real truth or decency.
The excellent article by my colleague Joaquin Flores made me think of the innumerable times I have myself encountered atrocious distortions about other nations on the American press, so frequent as to constitute the norm. In fact, although most distortions tend to be malicious toward the subject, i.e., Russia, China, Iran, Venezuela, Cuba and their leaders, or whoever is the enemy du jour in Washington, the US media often lies just as badly when it whitewashes the numerous criminal regimes Washington has put in power or sustains around the world.
Against that context, this piece, China Is Developing High-Tech Weapons Systems That Are Almost Too Scary To Think About, first published on Business Insider on Aug. 14, 2014, is not so bad, actually almost polite in its chosen tone and phraseology, yet still a splendid example of the neocon-infested thinking that “the West” (the bloc owned and led by the US) invariably exhibits toward any independent nation regarded as a rival. The author—Armin Rosen—professes fear about China’s development “of weapons technologies that skirt the boundaries of international legality.”
When we look at the broader picture, Rosen’s fretting over China’s clearly defensive capabilities is a laugh riot, especially since he seems unperturbed by the Washington clique’s wanton drive toward a possible nuclear confrontation with Russia, China or both, nor by the sheer size of the metastisizing Pentagon budget, one of the modern world’s great obscenities.
Yes, the author’s repeated allusions to China’s supposed break with “international norms” sounds a bit —what is term he uses?—asymmetrical. International norms? This from a voice obviously speaking from the perspective of imperial Washington, a regime which by any objective definition and in view of its unilateralist policies and lethally aggressive track record actually illustrates the meaning of being internationally lawless. (Never mind the frequent fig leaf and euphemisms, such as “coalitions”, the US tries to use to cover such unilaterality.)
In fact the longstanding attack by American conservatives on the UN, on the pretext that it constitutes a threat to US sovereignty (sic), that it’s run by commies or other enemies of America, etc., a posture often shamefully embraced by the White House itself, serves notice to the world that the US sees itself as above such entity’s rules and mandates. (Incidentally, this is also unconstitutional since the US membership in the UNO is underwritten by clear treaty stipulations we are obligated to observe).
This should all by itself constitute sufficient proof of America’s blatant lawlessness, a fact openly proclaimed by many US politicians, prominent pundits, and even presidents. It is precisely this arrogant, bully mentality, and America’s constant criminal actions on every corner of the globe that today stand as a present and clear danger to world peace. As any honest Beltway insider will have to admit, for all intents and purposes, and official sanctimony aside, the US these days literally defecates on any international—let alone—civilized rule of conduct.
This is why I believe all this noise on American politicians’ lips and media parrots about other nations’ lawlessness and crimes is the height of hypocrisy. Ah, what a great and refreshing day that would be if China were to simply say to the West and its vassals (like Abe’s Japan): “International norms? What international norms? We don’t need no international norms! I don’t have to show you any stinking international norms!”
—Patrice Greanville is TGP’s founding editor.
Over the past month, China has showed how its approach to its own rising superpower status applies to its defense policy. The results aren’t exactly reassuring.
Outside of its borders, China has forged a wide-ranging policy of outreach and investment in Africa. China claims the offshore extractive resources, and even the offshore territories, of nearly all of its immediate geographical neighbors in the South China Sea (see this Business Insider graphic for more). The country holds substantial American debt, and commands an enormous trade surplus with the world’s largest economy — a label that it hopes to seize from a wheezing U.S.
In the military realm, China’s ambitions have a tendency to manifest themselves through weapons technologies that skirt the boundaries of international legality. Over the past month, it’s been proven to be working on two such capabilities.
This is an asymmetrical tactic: China will never have a military with the global reach or technological and operational superiority of the U.S.’s. But it can at least develop worrying and globally impactful capabilities that most countries wouldn’t necessarily want for themselves — unless global norms rapidly deteriorated.
The past month offered two stark reminders of China’s asymmetrical approach to its military development. In late July, the U.S. State Department determined that China had conducted a“non-destructive” test of an anti-satellite missile. This wasn’t nearly as alarming as China’s early 2007 test of the an anti-satellite battery in which it destroyed a satellite already in orbit and created a potentially-destructive orbital debris field.
But even the abstract possibility of space warfare carries extraordinary risks for the world’s communications and GPS infrastructure — tools that the developed world’s governments and militaries depend upon. By even pursuing anti-satellite capabilities China is suggesting that it might consider orbital assets to be in play in a future conflict.
Such weaponry isn’t exactly illegal under the existing international legal regime, but it looks ahead to a mode of warfare that much of the world shudders to contemplate at the moment, including the U.S. In an email to Space News in the wake of last month’s test, a U.S. State Department spokesperson called on China “to refrain from destabilizing actions … such as the continued development and testing of destructive anti-satellite systems.”
And two weeks ago, China confirmed the existence of the long-rumored Dongfeng-41A next-generation intercontinental ballistic missile, which can supposedly carry up to ten nuclear warheads a distance of 12,000 kilometers…
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