The Unz Review: An Alternative Media Selection
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Terrorism Double Standards in San Bernardino, Paris...and Baicheng?
There have been some darkly amusing moments as the media in United States and France have pushed back against the PRC's efforts to shoulder its way into the privileged ranks of civilized nations that have innocently suffered terrorist attacks. More problematic is the unspoken corollary: that the PRC doesn't get the Empire State Building and... Read More
Yesterday I wrote a post,
Radicalisation at the Lal Masjid Mosque in Pakistan
[Update: according to the LA Times, Malik attended Bahauddin Zakariya University in the city of Multan in southern Punjab to study pharmacology from 2007 to 2012. So she wasn't at the Lal Masjid madrassa. Unclear how photo of her with Maulana Abdul Aziz came about.] With the as yet not officially confirmed
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I recently characterized the tsunami of analysis about the Paris attacks as a case of Orientalism. What isn't important is what may have happened. What's important is that we control the alien entity: we define the problem, we dictate the proper response and, natch, we get to declare victory—or at least what victory would look... Read More
When the US destroyer USS Lassen finally executed its Freedom of Navigation sailthrough a.k.a. “The FONOP” within 12 miles of Subi Reef on October 27, the China hawks were ecstatic. John Garnaut exulted that the United States had bested the PRC in a “seminal test of wills”. On his Twitter feed plugging his piece he... Read More
Turkey would seem to have every element that makes the heart of an idealistic Western journo go pitty-pat: Democracy under attack, journalists getting detained and beaten up, fascism on the march, moderate, middle-class protesters getting shredded by Islamic suicide bombers with alleged government connivance, rampant skullduggery in the run-up to a crucial election on November... Read More
This was an anxious week in Pivotland© , the Beltway district in which milsec types congregate to formulate, promote, and profit from the forward strategy toward the PRC. President Obama has been laggard in executing a cherished pivot initiative, the defiant US Navy sailthrough within 12 miles of the PRC’s faux-island holdings in the South... Read More
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One byproduct of tensions with the People’s Republic of China over the South China Sea (to be followed, shortly, I believe by tensions over the friction between the PRC and Taiwan ruled by the DPP) is the opportunity for the United States to abandon the useful but by now threadbare fiction that the massive U.S.... Read More
Clinton's debate assertion matches her version of events in Hard Choices, confirming, I suppose, that she provided the talking points to her ghostwriter and then took the trouble to memorize them. They are, unfortunately, pretty far shy of the truth. Courtesy of India’s First Post, an
On October 6, 2015, the Wall Street Journal carried this headline:
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A few years back, Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State declared that G-2—a US-PRC great power condominium much dreaded by advocates of a muscular attitude toward the Chinese menace—was dead. Don’t worry, China hawks. G-2 is still dead. What’s left is G-Zero: a world in which the PRC and US governments go their separate ways... Read More
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Japan, the United States, and the Security Laws
The passage of the collective self defense bills-- enabling Japanese participation in military activities beyond its home territory under restrictions that
…though, to be accurate, loyal readers of China Matters knew the skinny as it happened, three years ago and the Western media is now playin’ ketchup. From
Uyghurs, Turkey, & Passports…or Thailand, Human Trafficking, and Corruption...and Uyghur Patsies?
I’m still an agnostic on the Uyghurs dunnit theory, at least as far as the “aggrieved Uyghurs bombed the Erawan shrine to kill Chinese tourists in revenge for repatriation of Uyghurs to PRC” way. The only things we know for sure right now is that a) the Thai government is anxious to manage & control... Read More
Videos of the August 13 explosion at Tianjin are terrifying and amazing. Based on the seismic record, the second explosion was equivalent to the detonation of 21 tons of TNT. It’s not difficult to understand why Xi Jinping might have, as Willie Lam
Think of the PRC September 3 military parade, officially "Commemoration of the 70th Anniversary of the Victory of the Chinese People's War of Resistance Against japanese Aggression and the World Anti-Fascist War", as a tabula rasa, a blank screen upon which observers can project their PRC-related hopes, fears, anxieties, and fantasies. And, for Xi Jinping,... Read More
Anti-Submarine Warrior” Primps for Its Close-Up
Assistant Secretary of State Danny Russel spoke at the CSIS South China Sea Conference on July 20, 2015. He made news by declaring that the United States is not neutral in some issues pertaining to the South China Sea. The money quote came in reply to a question from Wu Shicun, the PRC representative at... Read More
Evidence keeps accummulating that a clandestine Turkish government program to enable Uyghur emigration from the PRC--for motives either noble, sinister, or both--has turned into a major security cock-up, embarrassment for Turkey, and a serious issue in PRC-Turkish relations. I wrote
The year-long tug of war between Turkey and the PRC over several hundred Uyghur detainees in Thailand was finally resolved, Solomonic fashion, by Thailand sending 170+ women and children to Istanbul in early July in a little noticed event, and the deportation of 100+ Uyghur men to the PRC this week, which has occasioned much... Read More
Me on Twitter on July 1: IMO most important development in PRC security is mainstreaming of support for Uyghurs in TK national politics. Way more serious than SCS. Turkish anti-PRC furor was fueled by reports of the PRC campaign against Ramadan. In Daily Sabah, the English-language version of Sabah, a Turkish daily closely associated with... Read More
Actually, that was a title of a post I wrote in July 2010, before island-building, before the Senkaku crises, before the rare earths brouhaha, even before Hillary Clinton declared that the US had a “national interest” in freedom of navigation at the 2010 ASEAN foreign ministers’ conference in Hanoi and formally kicked off the “pivot”.... Read More
Color me skeptical about the Sunday Times report that Edward Snowden’s archive got cracked. Not saying it couldn’t happen despite 256 bit encryption, accidents do happen, but the story as presented reeks of psyops bullshit unloaded by the NSA-GCHQ team with the help of obliging media in the UK. What I think is happening is... Read More
Mdme. Tsai Ing-wen, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) candidate for president in the 2016 Taiwan elections, came to Washington and
Spoiler: No.
It would seem a certain amount of foreign affairs reporting starts out as pabulum fed by the government and its loyal allies to available journos, who further if incompletely digest it and then crap it out on the digital pages of various newspapers, magazines, and think tank white papers for the delectation of a somewhat... Read More
...But Won't Be
Attendees at the Shangri La confab would like you to believe it’s about protecting Freedom of Navigation (hereinafter FoN) in the South Chinese Sea (hereinafter SCS) from the Perfidious Red Chinese (hereinafter PRC). I debunked the FoN canard pre-conference at Asia Times. The only nation with an existential interest in FoN in the SCS is... Read More
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When I was in Beijing during the protests in 1989, a middle-aged man came up to me and asked, “Couldn’t America send some B-52s here and…” and he made a swooping motion with his hand. Ten years later, on May 7, 1999, the American bombers did show up. Instead of showering freedom ordnance on China’s... Read More
I have a piece up at Asia Times,
The big news today is that Saudi Arabia and Turkey are clubbing together to overthrow the Assad regime. Actually, this is old news. What happened today is that the news embargo was lifted and the AP’s Desmond Butler got to print the
There was a nasty dustup on Twitter between the Glenn Greenwald forces and sympathizers with Bashar al Assad concerning the case of Maher Arar—a Canadian citizen who was deported by the US to Syria, where he was detained for 9 months and tortured (he describes his treatment
What's the Difference Between an "Unabashed Nationalist" and a "Fascist"?
I’ve written about the Turkish passport mystery—in which suspected Uyghur refugees somehow came into possession of Turkish passports, presumably high-tech, smart chip passports encrypted by a Turkish government agency that are so flawless that Asian governments have been unable to confirm their suspicions that their detainees are indeed Uyghurs fleeing the PRC—in a couple posts:
I’ve resisted weighing in on l’affaire Shambaugh—David Shambaugh’s blunt WSJ
Today the Guardian in its trademark handwringing fashion is marking the fourth anniversary of the Syrian conflict: 200,000 dead, 3.5 million refugees. The Guardian should also commemorate three and a half years of bloodshed, destruction, and misery inflicted upon Syria by the United States, the EU, and the GCC—make that murder, war crimes, and collective... Read More
The Guardian published an adulatory feature on “ The caption read: As
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Jeffrey Goldberg opined on his twitter feed that the Netanyahu-Obama grudge has its roots in Obama not letting Netanyahu bomb Iran. That’s BS, I think. I suspect that if Netanyahu really wanted to bomb Iran’s hardened and dispersed nuclear facilities--and enrage its population and a good chunk of the Muslim world and virtually guarantee that... Read More
Yesterday I
To demonstrate that it’s possible, for me anyway, to acquire a lot of useful information in a short period of time via Twitter, I offer for your consideration this series of exchanges (with multipart tweets stitched together for continuity and clarity):
Next time Brian Williams or his carefully-coiffed successor assigns blame to some foreign actor for a cyberoutrage, I expect the “Cyber Threats Intelligence Integration Center” to figure prominently in the coverage.
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India is now the belle of the ball, as most of the world and Asian regional powers make pilgrimages to New Delhi to flatter and flirt with India’s dynamic Prime Minister, Narendra Modi. Modi and India come with a certain amount of unpleasant baggage, which their suitors do their best to ignore. Modi himself is... Read More
Martin, Thurgood…and J. Edgar? The Preacher, the Black Cardinal, and the Grand Inquisitor I highly recommend Gilbert King’s Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America. Reading it in the context of Ferguson, Garner, etc. this book really f*cked me up, as they say nowadays. Based on... Read More
[Updated Jan. 17 & Jan. 20, 2015--CH] A couple days ago I was interviewed by The Real News on the current round of sanctions against North Korea. Link
When it comes to intelligence, everybody, be they democracies, dictatorships, or in between, wants it all. That includes the intelligence agencies--who treasure data as the wellspring of their effectiveness, influence, and leverage--and the presidents and prime ministers at the top of the heap—who are supposedly looking out for Joe Sixpack and his rights. No leader... Read More
My article on the PRC’s handling of its Uyghur minority in Xinjiang, titled “The Stan That Never Was” is in the current edition of CounterPunch Magazine, the subscription-only print/digital monthly. Subscribe
[Update: It is a sure sign that the blogging situation is not necessarily developing to one's advantage when a scholar gently points out that one's statement that "Elephants are not a Chinese thing, zoologically, archaeologically, or paleontologically" is utter bollocks and indeed Mark Elvin's seminal work of Chinese environmental history is titled "The Retreat of... Read More
Oliver Stone’s opinion that the US engineered some skullduggery in Kyiv in February 2014 has attracted some outraged howling. As to the actual mechanics of what went down, there is room for disagreement. I myself am something of a Maidan truther (see my piece from February 24, 2014 attached to this post which, if I... Read More
[Update: An Islamabad court has issued an order for Aziz' arrest. Judging from the
[Update, Dec. 19: I am not blown away by the US attribution of the hack to North Korea. On technical grounds, there’s problems like