It might turn out to be the best $5 million investment China ever made.
Repeating myself before going further — with the goal being to achieve global economic and military hegemony, supplanting the United States as the leading power in the world on both issues, makes the Chinese Communist Party and Chinese Military far and away the biggest threat to United States’ security and prosperity over the next 20+ years.
The first military step on the path towards the realization of this goal is the subjugation of Taiwan. The second step is making the South China Sea de facto territorial waters of China, thereby controlling all commerce through that trade route as well as the natural resources found there.
On Sunday China sent 15 military aircraft into Taiwanese airspace between mainland Taiwan and the Taiwan-controlled Pratas Islands in the South China Sea.
A total of six J-10 fighters, four J-16s, two SU-30s, a Y-8 reconnaissance aircraft and two Y-8 anti-submarine aircraft, were sent by China, the ministry said in a statement.
This followed a smaller flight on Saturday involving eight bombers and four fighter aircraft. This is a significant escalation of such provocations by China, which has regularly conducted such flights in recent months, but the prior incursions have always been by surveillance aircraft. In addition to the fighters and bombers, one anti-submarine aircraft was also in the group.
In both incidents Taiwan responded in a manner consistent with the prior incursions, warning the aircraft to leave the area and deploying anti-aircraft missile batteries to monitor the flights.
After Saturday’s action, the Biden Administration issued a standard State Department warning:
“We urge Beijing to cease its military, diplomatic, and economic pressure against Taiwan and instead engage in meaningful dialogue with Taiwan’s democratically elected representatives,” State Department spokesman Ned Price said in a statement.
“We will continue to assist Taiwan in maintaining a sufficient self-defence capability.”
Earlier on Sunday, the Defense Department said that the USS Theodore Roosevelt and its support ships entered the South China Sea to promote “freedom of the seas”. China has for several years been creating “man-made” islands in various locations in the South China Sea and then declaring the islands as sovereign Chinese Territory by building various types of installations on them. It is using the islands in the area as a basis to extend Chinse claims to the South China Sea as territorial waters of Mainland China. The artificial islands have been transformed into significant military facilities including three runways that have been used for the deployment of Chinese fighter jets.
In 2018, China placed anti-ship cruise missiles and long-range surface-to-air missiles on an artificial island it created near the contested Spratly Islands, a collection of several dozen low-lying islands and reefs close to Borneo.
The Biden Administration has so far maintained its public expressions of support for Taiwan, and the Taiwan Ambassador to the US was invited to the Biden Inauguration. But some in the Biden Administration are also seeking to return to a more “civil” discourse with China that has been the case recently with the Trump Administration.
In the closing weeks of the Trump Presidency, the Administration finalized several arms deals with the Taiwan government and eased restrictions on interactions between US government officials and officials of the Taiwan government which had been put in place to placate the Chinese. Outgoing US Ambassador to the US Kelly sent out a Tweet expressing support for Taiwan, including a picture of herself from the UN General Assembly Hall — Taiwan is not recognized — carrying a handbag with a stuffed Taiwan bear sticking out of the top, a gift from Taiwan’s representative in New York, James Lee.
The time is right for nations of the world to stand as one in opposition to the PRC’s efforts to exclude & isolate Taiwan. All @UN member states should recognize the benefits of Taiwan’s meaningful participation in int’l organizations & the damage done by its continued exclusion. pic.twitter.com/3FaxJ3INpG
— U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations (@USAmbUN) January 20, 2021
It remains to be seen how the Biden Administration will deal with the Chinese Communist government. Much has changed since Hunter was cutting lucrative deals for himself, his uncle Jim, and Joe “The Big Guy.”
The formal declaration by former Secretary of State Pompeo that China is engaging in genocide in its treatment of its Uyghur ethnic minority in the Xinjiang region in Western China creates complications for relations between the two countries unless the Biden Administration withdraws the declaration.
Avril Haines was among the first Biden Administrations to be confirmed and now serves as the Director of National Intelligence. In 2019 she co-authored an article published by the Council on Foreign Relations titled “By Any Other Name: Thoughts on US Genocide Determinations.” In it she wrote:
We agree with the report that, in a world where action to prevent or respond to genocide is often difficult to mobilize, activists and governments alike have seen value in calling genocide by its name… [W]e endorse the report’s conclusion that taking action to prevent or stop a mass atrocity should be a higher priority than naming the crime….
We also agree with the report’s conclusion regarding the importance of reinforcing or improving the U.S. government’s posture for mobilizing a multilateral response to stop or prevent additional atrocities and laying the groundwork for accountability efforts, even as a process for making a genocide determination is underway.
A key issue now pending before the Biden Administration is what it should do about the Trump Administration’s determination that China is engaged in genocide. Is Haines willing to support policies within the Administration that support her published words — “mobilizing a multilateral response to stop or prevent additional atrocities and laying the groundwork for accountability”? Secretary of State Tony Blinken told the Senate he agreed with Pompeo’s action.
Or will the CCP investment in Hunter Biden finally pay off?
Taiwan may give us the answer.