Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Keeping an Eye on the Long Game: Part XXXVII

Always make sure you walk a little bit in the other guy's moccasins.
The US is moving forces to Australia, Australia is selling uranium to India, Japan is stepping up military actions and coordinating more closely with the Philippines and Vietnam in the South China Sea, Myanmar is slipping out of China’s column and seeking to reintegrate itself into the region, Indonesia and the Philippines are deepening military ties with the the US: and all that in just one week. If that wasn’t enough, a critical mass of the region’s countries have agreed to work out a new trade group that does not include China, while the US, to applause, has proposed that China’s territorial disputes with its neighbors be settled at a forum like the East Asia Summit — rather than in the bilateral talks with its smaller, weaker neighbors that China prefers.

Rarely has a great power been so provoked and affronted. Rarely have so many red lines been crossed. Rarely has so much face been lost, so fast.
...
The US has won the first round, but the game has just begun. The Obama administration and its successors will now have to deal with a long term contest against the world’s most populous country and the world’s most rapidly developing economy. The Obama administration may not have fully counted the costs of the new Asian hard line; for one thing, it is hard to see significant cuts coming in defense spending after we have challenged China to a contest over the future of Asia. It’s possible that less drama now might have made America’s point as effectively while reducing the chance of Chinese push back, but there is not a lot of point in debating that now.

Given where things now stand, follow through will be as important as the first steps; the US must now try to make it as easy as possible for China to accept a situation that, in the short to medium term at least, it cannot change.

38 comments:

Jing said...

All of which has changed absolutely nothing. The U.S. is still slowly circling down the toilet as the world's superpower and continues to throw away its inheritance and prosperity through it's combination Bolshevist economic policy for the masses and plutocracy for the elites. It's outright race replacement agenda (electing a new electorate!) is going to guarantee a continued decline in standard of living and greater internal political conflicts as "diversity" works its inevitable magic. U.S. allies (or more accurately dependents) remain as ever shiftless, useless, and ultimately powerless as they ever were.

The geriatrics in Zhong Nan Hai are cowards of limited faculties. What they should be doing is actively encouraging America to disperse her political, economic, and military power into as many commitments as possible. Orchestrated chaos has a purpose and China should actively seek to cultivate it knowing full well that the American political elite cannot resist a good meddling. Call it the bic lighter approach to set as many small fires as you can to disperse American power. The middle east is always a good place to start and a threat to Israel will always generate a Pavlovian response from American politicians. An Iranian war would be an absolute godsend.

Vigilis said...

<span>"it is hard to see significant cuts coming in defense spending after we have challenged China to a contest over the future of Asia."</span>

True to Panetta, no doubt.  This president, however, has shown the world his cards.  Unless he has something up his sleeve besides the diplomatic acumen of Sec. State Clinton's diplomatic acumen,
he has telegraphed to us all that our submarines, special ops forces, and technological lead in stealth aircraft is what he (and we) will rely upon. 

Obama's push for civilain jobs for vets is neither coincidental nor due to his personal reverence for our troops. It is due to the fact that we are going to have far fewer of them serving if he gets his way.

Whatever else Panetta can save for DoD will suffice to support Obama's chosen vectors in his myopic vision.  What about Iran's nuclear threat?  Does anyone have an EMP warhead?
http://aquilinefocus.blogspot.com/2011/11/poetic-justice-101.html

ewok40k said...

Well, Chinese have brought it on themselves. They have wasted years of quiet non-threatening growth in a series of accidents aimed at intimidating neighbors, and started flexing military muscles at the same time. Tut, tut, thought they are little more patient with their timescale attitude... Didn;t they hear the tale of cooked frog? Another 30 years of slow economic infiltration and Taiwan would vote itself back into mainland, Phillipines and Vietnam would be Finlandized and Japan would age even more. Australia would just party on the beach.
Effectively, they have done the equivalent of late 1940s Soviet "bear diplomacy" of Berlin Crisis  which helped the birth  of the NATO.

MR T's Haircut said...

China is spending her capital that we have given her.  Our Manufacturing "Free Trade" allowed China access to very sensitive technology and theory that China has pursued and mastered in many cases.  

We are competing with her for resources... in the end warfare always comes down to basic needs.. primal needs..

and meanwhile Rome burns... 

MR T's Haircut said...

"...Emp warhead?"

better hope not.. but Hope is not a plan is it?

MR T's Haircut said...

Jing,

I think you have to high an opinion of our rate of circle.... we are already flushed... we ARE in decline..

the question is what will be the consequences on the world?  The US has led innovation since 1861.  We have done no real innovation since the 60's.  Sure we have the internet and fancy telephones, but these were simply refinements on existing innovation.

we ARE in decline.   Who will replace us? 

MR T's Haircut said...

China is going to be in a worse position than we are.. she has hundreds of millions of males with no prospects to procreate... no women.. so what happens to that demographic when Billions depend on Millions for support?

ewok40k said...

Now there is interesting question, where will the US get the money for the deterrence when China stops buying US treasury bonds?

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

all the jocking in the world means precisely dick if you don't have the muscle to back it up.  Indonesia, Vietnam, the PI, Singapore will all cross to the China fold if they detect that the US is unable or unwilling to stand its ground against China.

And the way that the budget cuts are going, I forecast that sooner rather than later.

Adversus Omnes Dissident said...

Third order effect:  Japan re-arms.

Hey, it really is starting to feel like 1938 again.............just ask Europe.

MR T's Haircut said...

Japan is in worse shape then we are.. her saving grace is utter LACK of immigration.  Japan birthrates are anemic. 

ewok40k said...

Japan doesnt need a massive land army to defend from China, only professional Navy and AF, which they have quite good quality. And the wildcard is whether they will overcome the Hiroshima syndrome and start looking to get own nukes, that's where things get from fun and games to outright hilarious...

UltimaRatioRegis said...

AOD,

1938 or 1913?

Brickmuppet said...

They march into neighboring countries , kill the men and take the women for themselves.

Andy said...

Is it me, or is there a really high rate of whining going on here on the Front Porch these days?  Maybe we all ought to step back a bit, reflect on some of the adverisites our forebearers have had to face, both here and abroad and resolve to act upon all our collective "woe unto us" syndrome. 

It's time to "cowboy up," kids, roll up our sleeves and do something, if even in some small, local way, to make a difference.  I just took some of my retirement pay and sent it off to a my local Congressman, a freshman R, who is a former Navy helo driver, to support his re-election.  I am inviting one of the few women WWII awardees of the Bronze Star with combat "V" to Thanksgiving tomorrow. We can sit around the porch here and bitch, whine, moan and complain, or we can DO something. The choice, my friends, is ours to make.

Oh, and by the way, remember that there are some young men and women out there who will NOT be having a Happy Thanksgiving Day tomorrow.

MR T's Haircut said...

Andy,

no whine detected... I see sheepdogs alerting the flocks that the wolves are near.  Good on you for doing something and taking action.  Please dont assume the rest of us are not...  just sayin. 

Happy Thanksgiving

MR T's Haircut said...

Andy,

Simply because some folks are awake and can see the problems we are facing as a nation and are attempting to inform and pass on that education to others is what the porch is for. 

To dismiss the siren they are sounding as some kind of "whining" because it doesnt suit someone elses perception of the way things are going in the world is dissenginous and stifles critical thinking and cogent replies. 

The commentary is coming from intelligent, caring, concerned Americans (and Poles and Brits).  To dismiss a regular member of the neigborhoods view point as "Whining" is close to condencending.   (life isnt all about wanting to buy the world a Coke and singing in perfect harmony).

Cheers

Byron said...

Only whining from me is when I can't think of a "clean" phrase or word when what I really want is profane to say the least ;)

cdrsalamander said...

Perhaps just part of the general grumpyness all over the place.

Yes - on balance, we do live the easy life compared to many.  No question.

Anonymous said...

hmmm, that would unexpectedly make withdrawing from Iraq sensible step...

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Er, no, sorry Guest. 

What would make sense is cutting into the budget-crushing entitlement spending and keeping our military at the level at which it can fight and win two simultaneous Major Regional Conflicts. 

11B40 said...

Greetings:

My current take on our foreign relations much follows Samuel P. Huntington's "The Clash of Civilizations...". The mental image I have comes from those nature programs on the Progressive (née Public) Broadcasting System where a lion, the veritable King of the Beasts, is surrounded and trying to protect his kill (or perhaps more accurately his sweetheart's kill) from a pack of (non-laughing) hyenas. Now some of the hyenas want to bite the lion while others just what a bit of his meat, but none of them wish him well unless it's his farewell.

Sometimes, what's good for the goose, is good for the gander.

Andy said...

Maybe it's just me, but then again, I've been told I closely resemble this guy in more ways than one :-D : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ib43Lfdivdw

Anonymous said...

India has Himalayas, Russia has Mnogo Bomb, and I'd love to see Chinese to invade Middle East thru AFG. Japanese would rather detonate all their nuke plants than allow Chinese to steal single pair of Japanese girls underwear. No I dont think the Chinese will seek women abroad unless they get rich enoughto buy them.

Old Grunt said...

<p><span><span><span>Let’s acknowledge that the United States enabled China to become a threat and in the future….and we are doing everything we can to ensure that they remain a threat.-Who provided the resources (money) for China's military to modernize?-Who shipped semi-conductor design AND manufacturing technology to China?-Who transferred military technology (such as building jet engines that last for thousands of hours instead of dozens) to the Chinese?-Who gave them the aircraft designs, weapons designs and electronic systems capabilities?-Who trained their engineers, scientists, linguists and other STEM personnel…and then encouraged their own country’s manufacturing and design companies to hire them? We never trained and educated Russian scientists and engineers.<span>  </span>We engaged in industrial and military espionage with Russia and the Soviet Block.<span>  </span>We made them work to collect information about our technology.<span>  </span>When we made the Russians angry, the US had both the political will AND military capability to make them think twice about doing anything back.  Are we simply creating China as a threat (and making them angry in the process) so we can have an enemy to justify our military? If we are doing that intentionally, then why are we building systems like LCS which defends nothing;<span>  </span>the F-22 which costs $350M, that can’t fly or deploy and needs another $8B of upgrades; the V-22 which works as long as no one is shooting at it; and a military that is incapable of deploying without 2-4 contractors per service member? We can’t even field aircraft carriers with functional toilets. Let’s have a frank discussion about really keeping an eye on the long game. We haven’t since 1989 and it’s about time we start.</span></span></span></p>

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Can you say LORAL?  Wannit the current SecState's hubby that authorized the sale?  And wasn't the CEO of LORAL the self-same Bernie Schwartz that gave more than $500,000 to the DNC and DSCC between April 1995 and Octover 1996?  And wasn't Johnny Gung the one who was wired some $350,000 from his friend in the PRC, and gave nearly $100,000 to the DNC and the Clinton campaign? 

And wasn't that Ron Brown's Commerce Department who went against intelligence and military advice in altering the guidelines for licensing satellites?  Right around Election Day 1996? 

Now, I have been scolded here on the porch for making leaps of assumption regarding culpability of individuals after demonstrated criminal and/or disreputable behavior, and not sticking to "published facts", so I suppose I should presume the above has a perfectly innocent explanation.  Coincidence, perhaps.  Impressive and genuine loyalty to the Democratic Party on the part of Mr Schwartz, and Mr Chung. 

But then again.....

Casey Tompkins said...

Actually, most of the tech China obtained has come from espionage & outright IP theft via reverse-engineering. They don't need free trade for that. :)

Casey Tompkins said...

Ewok, I'll lay odds Japan would shed their phobia goddam quick if they felt threatened, and that point in time is less than ten years away.

Irony alert: Japan still has a bad rep in many parts of Asia for their agression against China and neighboring countries back in the 1930s & WW2.

Casey Tompkins said...

Maybe it's all the "our country is shot to Hell, and is already circuling the toilet" talk?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Which we wouldn't have, except our country is shot to hell and circling the toilet. 

Elections have consequences.  1964.  1976.  2008.

The Usual Suspect said...

URR,
I can back you up on the LORAL chapter.  Went to grad school with someone right in the middle of all of it.  He made a lot of people nervous and had great situational awareness...he needed it.

Surfcaster said...

Any of you old timers (with all due respect) feel like this is 1979 all over again? Or worse?

I was 11 or so and had a crush on Jane Seymour. 'Bout all I remember of significance from then.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Not quite that old (1982), but I believe it worse.  Our industrial base, largely intact in 1979, is gone.  Stifled and strangled largely by labor unions and excessive environmental legislation, and foreign competition that did everthing they could (and which we allowed) to move US manufacturers out of markets, including our own. 

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

You shouldn't be scolded, near as I can tell, he did the deed, but being Bill Clinton, he can see no conflict in his own enrichment, nor the enrichment of the Democrat Party. He is a weasel.

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

Being a Badger, I prefer cuddliness and lovability to grumpyness, but that is just the way Badgers are.

ewok40k said...

I've meant that having all this costly equipement in Iraq being burned out by EMP next door would be silly - read the article (poem) referred to by Vigilis

AOD said...

URR, well said, Sir........

AOD said...

It's kind of funny that we wait to take the hardline with China until our allies in Western Europe are one step short of going Dawn of the Dead all over each other.