Sunday, January 30, 2005
Great symbols for the new century, gained by the bravery and honor of the few for the many.
One day, probably many days, Ukraine and Iraq will oppose us now and then like Germany, France, Japan, South Korea and other representative governments. And that is just fine.
Oftentimes, the expressions on Soldier's faces say it all. More often than not, in a situation where you are forced to act under coercion it helps to remember hand signals.
Specialist Lacourse, I like your style. Remind me not to piss you off.
Hat tip to
Saturday, January 29, 2005
Having not seen the movie, I get the feeling that it will bring home the truth that the folks in body armor, aircraft, ships, and at the front gate of your neighborhood military base are the kids your children grew up with, the high school party kids you yelled at last year, or the friend from your youth you have not seen in 20yrs.
I hope this brings honor to the soldiers, it looks like it will. Remember the Soldiers on the cover of Time last year as the "Persons of the Year" or such? Well, this is (by chance) their unit, the 2/3 FA, an artillery unit from Germany. Looks like they did a quick infantry upgrade.
It has been a concern of mine for awhile that Hollywierd has not made any effort to tell the story of this Global War. From early on there have been many opportunities, heck the
BTW, they are
BAAAAWAAAHHAAAHAHAAA!!! I know the good General and have had the honor of serving with him during OEF-A, and Mr. Ford, you ain't it. You are too tall, too pretty, too smooth, and your balls are WAY too small. I don't think there is a Hollywierd actor that is fit to carry General Mattis's laundry bag. What a hoot. On a serious note, if you look at the politics and past of the owners of the movie and its major players, don't hold your breath that this will bring glory to the USA. I'm not.
Anyway, check out
Thursday, January 27, 2005
Read it all, but this will give you a taste,
The international demographic context will see huge changes: in 2050, Yemen will have more population than, for example, Germany. These people will quite understandably long for the standard of living that currently prevails in Europe. The immigration pressure on Europe will be immense. Given the European liberal laws on family reunification, the exodus from Middle East and North Africa will have enormous dimensions.If you don't have a firm grasp why Europe is a "dead man walking," this will show you in one of the most brief, direct, and effective ways why.
Instead of integration of immigrants from the Middle East and North Africa into a majority European society, the opposite will occur: the immigrants will integrate the existing European culture into their own civilization. After some time, it will be their civilization that will become dominant. One does not have to be a supporter of Jean-Marie Le Pen to feel a little anxious about that. It is not a problem of ethnics and their mingling. It is a matter of society, its values, and democracy as such. European tolerance competes with Islam, which is not always a religion of peace, as many Europeans would like to believe. Radical Islamic preachers openly condemn democracy. They interpret it not as a social system but as a pagan cult, which prefers the voices of people to the voice of God. This and other theories of Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi and his conservative fellow-believers are proclaimed in many mosques throughout Europe.
If you don't think demographics show your destiny, talk to an American Indian.
UPDATE: Everyone should visit
Monday, January 24, 2005
There are many ways to show affection for this true Anglo-American (Father Brit - American Mother), the U.S. Navy named a Destroyer after him,
..... but I like to remember him thus: "The Tipsy Tory with Gun and Cigar"
Hat Tip Jonah Goldberg at
Sunday, January 23, 2005
1Lt. Prakash just about fills the bill on the Phibian's cool things about America's military that drives the Moonbat Left nuts:
1. He comes from a well to do (everyone but him is a MD) family.
2. He is highly educated (went to Johns Hopkins University).
3. He isn't a Southerner (raised in Syracuse) - NB: No one is perfect, wish he grew up in Charleston, but being a Southerner I will say that any family worth a salt would be happy to have him as a son-in-law, take duck hunting, and share a pecan pie with.
4. He loves his country.
5. He is an immigrant (born in India).
6. He chose to do this.
7. He has no problem smiling after killing a metri-butt-ton of the enemy.
8. He is a blogger!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
A hearty "Bravo Zulu" from the Phibian. Now, everyone read the story
I just wish he wanted to be a S.E.A.L., but they don't have cool hats and spurs......except on liberty.
Friday, January 21, 2005
National Socialism….. mmmm …. Lets see … Socialism is of the Left, you think?
I digress. With as little comment as possible, this picture tells the story well by itself. It just builds on the themes I have talked about before
Sgt. 1st Class Jeff Due, right, a U.S. Army recruiter, is surrounded by protesters at Seattle Central Community College, Thursday, Jan. 20, 2005, in Seattle. After about a 10-minute standoff during which protesters tore up U.S Army literature, the protesters were successful in getting Due and another recruiter to leave their table under escort by campus security officers. Several hundred students walked out of classes at several Seattle colleges and universities to protest the inauguration of President Bush (news - web sites). (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Do any of these Brownshirts know what it takes to be a Sgt. 1st Class? Do they have a concept of the freedom, wealth, and safety we enjoy in this country that is so rare in the world; that is guaranteed by the likes of Sgt. 1st Class Jeff Due?
Note the faces, note the violence, smell the ignorance. I can hear
"Why I Homeschool: Reason #2510"
Wednesday, January 19, 2005
Holding an economic gun to the head of Third World Tsunami victims. Charles Dickens would not be shocked.
From the folks that brought back-stabbing to an art in
This has non-salamander amphibian slime smeared all over it.
UPDATE: OK, OK, OK, I know the above is strong.....gee the French are touchy. Just FYI, everytime I go to France, the French people are great to me, and in general. The issue I have is that their government is just beyond the pale. I am a firm believer that you get the government you deserve, but even I will admit that the French government isn't worthy of the French people. Oh,
Wednesday, January 12, 2005
Now, watch the directors cut, in German with English subtitles if you must, of
The below is out on UNCLAS commercial email now, so it is safe to share with all. This is a Flag Officer, an Admiral, the type Hollywood likes to vilify, writing without a speech or ghostwriter, sending out a message to his peers and the larger Navy from his heart. This is a good representation of the Flag Officers I have served with, men of honor and service. I will let the email speak for itself.
In addition to the message of leadership from the unmentioned Culinary Specialist on the SFO to COMSUBPAC and overview of how the Navy deals with tragedy involving its family, this is a testament to the outstanding professionalism of the submariners involved, their wives that are son critical, the family of one lost in action, the danger that the sea is to those that serve on, over and under her, and the workmanship of the American shipyard that built the USS San Francisco.
My prayers are with the USS San Francisco family, as is my pride in my shipmates’ ability to execute. BZ.
Subject: SITREP ~ USS San Francisco Grounding
In a message dated 1/10/2005 6:01:29 PM Hawaiian Standard Time, email@example.com writes:
Sent: Mon Jan 10 02:17:01 2005
Subject: USS SAN FRANCISCO SITREP -2100W/9 Jan 05
Fellow Flag Officers this is my second unclas update on the SAN FRANCISCO incident for your situational awareness:
At 10 January 1634 local (100134 EST) the USS SAN FRANCISCO returned safely to Apra Harbor, Guam. The ship moored with her own line handlers in a normal submarine configured mooring (AFT draft is 27'-10'' (normal AFT draft is 32') and FWD Draft is above the draft marks with the waterline at the point the towed array faring begins; 0.8 degree STBD list and 1 degree Down bubble indicating by naval architecture calculations that 1 A/B and 2A/B MBTs are most likely flooded). The severely injured Machinist Mate (Engineroom Upper Level Watch at time of grounding) was evacuated immediately and transferred by ambulance to Naval Hospital Guam where a fully staffed medical team was standing by. He is conscious and in stable condition. Approximately fifteen additional injured personnel requiring medical care subsequently departed the ship and were transported to the hospital after taking a moment to meet with family members.
Crewmembers from the USS CORPUS CHRISTI, HOUSTON and FRANK CABLE assisted in linehandling and various return to port evolutions such as propulsion plant shutdown, shorepower cables, and rig for surface. Standing by on the pier was a full complement of watchstanders from USS CITY OF CORPUS CHRISTI (and SAN FRANCISCO stay-behinds) to satisfy all watchstanding requirements for reactor plant shutdown with follow-on inport forward and aft watchsections.
Following the grounding on 8 January, the ship transited on the surface at 8kts with surface escort, USCGC GALVESTON ISLAND to Apra Harbor, Guam. Due to deteriorated weather conditions on the evening of 9 January, the Commanding Officer shifted bridge watchstations to control and shut bridge access hatches to maximize watertight integrity in light of reserve buoyancy concerns. The ship maintained stability throughout the surface transit with continuous operation of the Low Pressure Blower on the Forward Main Ballast Tanks. SAN FRANCISCO has experienced no reactor plant, propulsion train or electrical system degradations as a result of the grounding. The Commanding Officer shifted the Officer of the Deck's watch to the bridge on 10 January in preparation for piloting into Apra Harbor.
The critically injured Machinist Mate (Auxiliaryman) passed away yesterday afternoon as a result of his injuries. The MM2 was in Aft Main Seawater Bay at the time of the grounding and his body was thrown forward approximately 20 feet into Propulsion Lube Oil Bay. He suffered a severe blow to his forehead and never regained consciousness.
Emergency medical personnel, including a Naval Hospital Guam surgeon, Undersea Medical Officer and Independent Duty Corpsmen, arrived on the ship via helicopter transfer to provide immediate medical care and prepare the crewmember for medical evacuation on the morning of 9 January. Unfortunately, the sailor's condition deteriorated and he died onboard while under the care of the embarked physicians. Just moments prior to the sailors death, I spoke with the Sailor's father in preparation for their pending travel from Ohio to the West Pacific to see their Son. Since then I have passed on to his Dad my condolences on their Son's death and reassured them their Son's remains would be treated with utmost respect and dignity. His father expressed great gratitude for the extraordinary efforts made by the Navy to save his Son's life. He told me his Son loved the Navy, having just reenlisting earlier this year and wanted to make it a career. That when he called home he always talked about the many friendships and the wonderful camaraderie the crew of SFO exhibited. Prior to sailing, he was really excited about the pending ship visit to Australia. The parents are considering traveling to Guam, with Navy support, at some point to meet the crew and partake in a memorial service for his Son.
For the remainder of the transit, the embarked medical trauma team administered medical care to the other injured personnel. Their careful attention and evaluation augments the ship's Independent Duty Corpsman's heroic efforts since the grounding.
Submarine Squadron Fifteen COMMODORE, Captain Brad Gerhke and Captain Paul Bushong, Commanding Officer of the Submarine Tender USS FRANK CABLE have mobilized their assets, staffs, crews and local Navy Community to provide comprehensive support to the SAN FRANCISCO. Professional counselors, medical personnel and Navy Chaplains are scheduled to meet with the entire crew to provide grief counseling and assistance throughout the next several days and as required over the long term. Brad has been meeting frequently with the SFO families and they are doing remarkable well. The entire Navy community in Guam has come to the SFO's families' assistance.
I have talked to Kevin Mooney's (SFO Skipper) wife, XXXX(Phibian FP edit). Her state of mind is positive and resolute, with a courageous and upbeat view of the trying days ahead.
The ship's Main Ballast Tank damage and deformation has degraded maneuverability and mandated the use of two tugs to moor in Apra Harbor. A Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard/NAVSEA Material Assessment Team comprised of a structural engineer, MBT vent expert, air systems expert and naval architect arrived in Guam with special ship salvage and recovery equipment to stabilize the ship pierside as soon as possible. The team, led by Captain Charles Doty, commenced a seaworthiness and repair assessment upon the ship's arrival. Once additional buoyancy measures are in place and tested satisfactory, the Low Pressure Blower will be secured to allow divers to enter the water to conduct an inspection. While this grounding is a tragedy, with a through investigation led by Cecil Haney, we will find out all the facts and then ensure we learn from the mistakes. But, I too believe we have much to be thankful for today, and much to be confident in.
An operational warship has returned to port on her own power with all but one of its crew after sustaining major hull damage. The survival of the ship after such an incredibly hard grounding (nearly instantaneous deacceleration from Flank Speed to 4 KTS) is a credit to the ship design engineers and our day-to-day engineering and watchstanding practices. The continuous operation of the propulsion plant, electrical systems and navigation demonstrates the reliability of our equipment and the operational readiness of our crews as a whole. The impressive Joint and Navy team effort which resulted in SFO returning to port safely says volumes about the ingenuity and resourcefulness of all our armed services. For all who participated in this effort, thank you and your people. We are all eternally grateful to each of you.
Very Respectfully -
UPDATE II: Electric Boogaloo - Drydock photo.
Tuesday, January 11, 2005
Bravo Zulu to
Today, during an afternoon conference that wrapped up my project of the last 18 months, one of my Euro colleagues tossed this little turd out to no one in particular:
"See, this is why George Bush is so dumb, there's a disaster in the world and he sends an Aircraft Carrier..."
After which he and many of my Euro colleagues laughed out loud.
and then they looked at me. I wasn't laughing, and neither was my Hindi friend sitting next to me, who has lost family in the disaster.
I'm afraid I was "unprofessional", I let it loose -
"Hmmm, let's see, what would be the ideal ship to send to a disaster, now what kind of ship would we want?
Something with its own inexhaustible power supply?
Something that can produce 900,000 gallons of fresh water a day from sea water?
Something with its own airfield? So that after producing the fresh water, it could help distribute it?
Something with 4 hospitals and lots of open space for emergency supplies?
Something with a global communications facility to make the coordination of disaster relief in the region easier?
Well "Franz", us peasants in America call that kind of ship an "Aircraft Carrier". We have 12 of them. How many do you have? Oh that's right, NONE. Lucky for you and the rest of the world, we are the kind of people who share. Even with people we don't like. In fact, if memory serves, once upon a time we peasants spent a ton of money and lives rescuing people who we had once tried to kill and who tried to kill us.
Do you know who those people were? that's right Franz, Europeans.
There's is a French Aircraft carrier? where is it? Right where it belongs! In France of course! Oh why should the French Navy dirty their uniforms helping people on the other side of the globe. How Simplesse...
The day an American has to move a European out of the way to help in some part of the world it will be a great day in the world, you sniggering little f**knob..."
The room fell silent. My hindi friend then said quietly to the Euros:
"Can you let your hatred of George Bush end for just one minute? There are people dying! And what are your countries doing? Amazon.com has helped more than France has. You all have a role to play in the world, why can't you see that? Thank God for the US Navy, they don't have to come and help, but they are. They helped you once and you should all thank God they did. They didn't have to, and no one but them would have done so. I'm ashamed of you all..."
Some my say this was made up. Well, I don't care. It says the truth from my perspective and sounds up front.
In addition, he gives a plug for a leader all military professionals should study,
Hat tip to
Monday, January 10, 2005
Though I am sure that there are many times in the past where you could argue that
In the last few years he has often looked the part of the Left's non-housetrained attack dog, but you have to respect the man's record and give him a pass. At least I did. I have a signed copy of The Vietnam Primer for goodness sakes.
Colonel, grab your USAF A2 jacket, water ski's, and get behind the boat. You are jumping the shark.
Kind of like putting down a loved, honorable, and well storied horse; it is best just to do it quickly and be done with this.
Page 96 of the report.
Wow. I wonder if CBS was doing a special on heart disease they would use a proctologist's opinions? A Doctor is not a Doctor. Hack should have begged off, unless he had a political agenda to push. QED.
Mapes said that she asked Colonel Hackworth to "look at the back and forth" in the Killian documents because he had worked in the Pentagon and knew about Pentagon politics. Even though Colonel Hackworth was never in the TexANG, did not know Lieutenant Colonel Killian or any of the other relevant individuals, had no personal knowledge of President Bush's service in the TexANG and had no personal knowledge regarding the Killian documents, he reached some highly critical conclusions in his interview regarding President Bush's TexANG service based solely on the purported authenticity of the Killian documents and his general knowledge of the military.
First Colonel Hackworth concluded that the documents were "genuine." ... and proceeded to discuss what the Lieutenant Colonel (Killian) was thinking at the time he wrote the memoranda.Talking with the dead Hack?
...Colonel Hackworth stated repeatedly throughout his interview the then-Lieutenant Bush was "AWOL" and that a person would have to reach that conclusion when reviewing the documents "unless you're the village idiot." Colonel Hackworth appeared to be referring to the fact that he had seen no evidence that President Bush was "present for duty" once he left for Alabama in 1972, although he did not articulate clearly how he reached his conclusion.Village idiot, eh? What do you call someone that believes something that nothing supports?
So many Bush haters wanted this story to be true that these otherwise sound people were willing to throw away their training, logic, and good sense signing on to a loosing cause based on fraud. They so wanted to be part of taking down the President, all caution was ignored.
Trying to politically destroy a sitting President a tricky business. Especially with lies and fraud. Everyone involved in this smear campaign deserves to wander in the wilderness for a long time.
I will give CBS' vetting process some credit though, they ultimately did not use Hack's interview because,
Kartiganer also reviewed the Colonel Hackworth transcript, but the portion of the Colonel Hackworth interview that was included in a draft script was ultimately removed by others in the vetting process because it was considered inflammatory and gratuitous.(p.115)Considered "considered inflammatory and gratuitous" by CBS due to your Bush hate. Yikes, that has to hurt.
CBS' lawyers felt the same way.
.... a CBS lawyer expressed ... his concerns about using Colonel Hackworth in the Segment and suggested that it might not be appropriate to rely on him.(pg.122)And when you are not even fair enough for CBS,
Due to fairness concerns ... the sound bites from Colonel Hackworth's interview were taken out of the final script...(p.124)The Panel was concerned that they even interviewed Hackworth because,
The Panel is somewhat troubled by the proposed use of these excerpts since they seemed gratuitous and because Colonel Hackworth lacked any personal knowledge pertaining to the TexANG.(p.213)There were only two specific changes CBS made prior to the 08 SEP 04 Segment to keep it "fair and balanced" (from CBS' perspective remember), Hack's interview was one.
Normally, such an occasion would be reason for an addition to the Wall of Shame, but Colonel Hackworth does not deserve that. He is truly a hero that served his country well beyond the call of duty. A fallen hero, perhaps, but a hero. I will never shame Hack, pity maybe, but never shame.
I did not enjoy this post. I need to go PT.
UPDATE: Did you know Hack also worked with Mapes on Abu Ghraib?
Friday, January 07, 2005
OK, those aren't Detailers; but still, is it any mistake that
P.S. Happy 70th Elvis. You are still The King.
"Skipper, Phibian. Sorry to wake you up at this hour."
"Hey, no problem guy. Whats up? Your flight into Iraq go OK?"
"Well, you know what they say, 'Every landing you walk away from is a good landing...'!"
"Remember that you wanted me to keep an eye on the #1 engine on the 12 bird that was giving us such trouble over the last couple flights?"
"Yea Phibian......what about it?"
"Well, you don't have to worry about it giving us much trouble again."
"Damn it Phibian, its the middle of the night here and I am dead tired. Get to the point! How was the landing?"
"Skipper, the touchdown was a little rough."
"But I managed to keep her on the runway."
Actual story here.
Last week one of our (actually one of THEIRS, it is an AirFarce plane) planes flew into a US operated airfield in Iraq during the day and saw there was construction equipment on the runway. Yet ther ewas no NOTAM (notice to airmen). A trench was being dug in the runway, and it was not marked. It's a long runway and they just landed beyond the construction. They filed a safety hazard report that was immediately forwarded to our higher headquarters and to the Air Force wing based here. Well, it seems the construction continued and still was not marked or NOTAMed or anything. A C-130 landed on the runway the night of the 29th and didn't see the construction. C-130 was totaled, several injuries to the crew and the few passengers but nobody was killed - miraculously .
NB: Actual base, squadron, wing, crew, and pilots names are not disclosed to protect the idiot.....ummm....errr..innocent.
Wednesday, January 05, 2005
Millions of Americans were subject to this. It is good enough for terrorists.
Personally, I would rather have a
Update: Well known War Criminal
Monday, January 03, 2005
Everyone, meet Col. Gardiner.
At first glance, he looks respectful. He has taught strategy and military operations at the National War College, AirWar College, and Naval War College. He was recently a visiting scholar at the Swedish Defense College. You start to wonder though when his own
Did I just type Swedish War College? Ehhhh?
Just when you thought he was gone, he is back. This time his take is
"I am amazed that it is not greater," says retired Air Force Col. Sam Gardiner. "The war continues to go badly. Their equipment is in bad shape. Supply problems continue. Tours are extended. Many are on a second or third deployment to a combat zone. I would expect a louder voice."
No Colonel, not everyone enjoys a good bitch-fest like you. We have a war to fight, sir.
Impressed? Well I'm not. I guess this is his new line of attack being that his previous one of "Lies, lies" didn't get him the book deal he wanted.
Oh, lets review. His "Lies, lies" Opus follows. Perhaps, but with pompous-ass title of
“I thought about calling it ‘Apparatus of Lies’…”it just becomes way too much. Maybe we shouldn't, but why not. You just want to say, Colonel, we are at war; a war like no other we have fought. Look where you are expending your professional ammunition, your: nation’s; military.
Read it if you like, but I can give you the knee-board summary,
Oh, sorry. That was Police Detective Thorn.
Sam’s take is more like “Everyone lied. Everyone but me lies!!! It’s all lies!!! Lies!!!
But wait, there is more. They like him a lot at
I’m willing to cut the good Colonel a break, but geeee wizzzzz, enough of the bitter-boy Monday morning quarterbacking. Not everyone makes Flag buddy, and no one is perfect. To expect perfection out of others when you don’t have it yourself is the peak of hypocrisy. Attacking your country while it is engaged in war is another word.
To quote him on one of his little
“Let’s not have casualties. Let’s hope this thing somehow finds a solution. I don’t hear anybody with a solution.”
Well, I don’t hear one from you. Either offer solutions, or shut up and wait for victory. You know the history of war, and you know that your words are a comfort to those that would do our country harm. I wish you would focus your expertise on ways to attack and destroy the enemy, not make a living out of doing the same to those that are trying to win on your behalf.
Balance sir, balance. You don’t have it.
Col. Sam Gardiner, U.S. AirFarce (Ret.), congratulations, you are the next addition to the Wall of Shame.
Want to sink our USS Oklahoma? OK, we'll build something a bit bigger.
Look. Learn. Live.
Hat Tip to
I’ll give the author of
I think his “the 19th was the British, the 20th was the American, therefore the 21st is the Chinese” linear theory of history is a bit off. You know the –2nd to almost the 6th century was the “Roman Century”, so not everything has to go by the British Empire timetable……. Ahhhh we have it.
Another case of “I miss my empire-I feel guilty about empire-If I can’t have an empire no one can” train of thought that comes out of the Mother Country now and then.
“THE 18TH and 19th centuries were the British centuries, in which industrial, political and imperial development in Britain shaped the world. The 20th century was the American century; the United States changed the world, providing a margin of victory in two world wars, and developing all the major new technologies: telephones, automobiles, television, jet aircraft, the internet and so on. We all assume, as Washington undoubtedly assumes, that we are still living in the era of American hegemony, though it is already clear that China may be an emerging superpower”
There is more to being the dominant power than size and desire. There is culture.
The highly underrated (and that is a compliment) John Derbyshire (Derb to you and me) beat me to the punch this AM. Instead of simply paraphraseing and claim that it is all original thought, I will quote in full his post at
“Britain... America... notice anything? The great successes of these two nations rest(ed) in the Anglo-Saxon political traditions of personal autonomy, freedom under law, representative legislatures, and limited government. China has no such traditions: has, in fact, all the OPPOSITE traditions. I see no sign that this is changing. Rather the contrary: as China becomes richer and more confident, the ancient norms are re-asserting themselves. Spend a couple of hours in a room full of Chinese decision-makers. Then read the Rees-Mogg piece again.
100 years ago there were excellent grounds for arguing that the 20th century would be Germany's, or Russia's, or Japan's -- or even China's! Things didn't work out that way. Why? Politics. Before we arrive in Mr. Rees-Mogg's economistical utopia, there is still plenty of old-fashioned politics to be traveled through.”
Before the mindless PC police come out of the woodwork, few folks know China better. His wife was born and raised in China, they spend a fair bit of time with the in-laws, he lived in Hong Kong, and he is the one that gave me the insight that Cantonese and Mandarin use the same pictographs: it would be like the written words of German and English were the same, though the spoken word was different (just an OBTW).
Also keep in mind that the great Chinese cities of Hong Kong (less great every year it suffers under the dead hand of Red China) and Singapore are HIGHLY influenced by Anglo-Saxon culture. It would be a stretch to call them Anglo-Saxon, but like Chile, compared to their neighbors, they sure have a lot of their business culture derived from Anglo-Saxon traditions.
China is a great country, but there are significant cultural barriers that exist that will stop them from reaching the highest state of Superpower being. Remember, the foundation of this culture is largly intact that launched a great era of discovery, only to destroy it out of fear. China can create great leaders like
A great overview of this stage of
"While China is blessed with plenty of territory and a large population, her geographic position is to be largely surrounded by land, with sea trade routes not particularly convenient, with most of the people far from the sea (the exception being the south coastal Chinese), and with governments through the ages generally disinterested in the seapower or ocean commerce.36 In a few periods of history, Chinese governments have managed (Sung and Yuan dynasties) to fight these natural factors. However, when it comes down to either army or navy, or either agricultural or maritime trade, in China the army/agriculture side has always won. The navy/maritime trade aspect is a luxury to be discarded in China when the strategic situation is deteriorating and resources are limited."
"It was not a lack of nautical technology, but rather a combination of the above political and strategic factors that caused a Chinese rejection of sea trade and seapower in the mid-15th century. Ocean-going technology was subsequently lost in China due to official hostility and neglect."
Without the ability to project power over the oceans of the Earth, you will not be a Superpower. Once China takes care of Taiwan, if they ever take care of Taiwan, they will no longer have a need or want to develop a gobal, blue water navy.
My $.02. China the Britain of the 19th or the American of the 20th? Nawww. Try Imperial Germany of the 20th.
Chew on that.
Another thing about Derb. Buy this book.
Update: Interested in the "Imperial Germany" train of thought? Derb emailed a recommendation to read David Fromkin's latest Europe's Last Summer. Looks like another book to read!!