Check out the TB2K CHATROOM, open 24/7               Configuring Your Preferences for OPTIMAL Viewing
  To access our Email server, CLICK HERE

  If you are unfamiliar with the Guidelines for Posting on TB2K please read them.      ** LINKS PAGE **



*** Help Support TB2K ***
via mail, at TB2K Fund, P.O. Box 24, Coupland, TX, 78615
or


WAR 08-04-2018-to-08-10-2018___****THE****WINDS****of****WAR****
+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 34 of 34
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980

    3 08-04-2018-to-08-10-2018___****THE****WINDS****of****WAR****

    (332) 07-14-2018-to-07-20-2018___****THE****WINDS****of****WAR****
    http://www.timebomb2000.com/vb/showt...*of****WAR****

    (333) 07-21-2018-to-07-27-2018___****THE****WINDS****of****WAR****
    http://www.timebomb2000.com/vb/showt...*of****WAR****

    (334) 07-28-2018-to-08-03-2018___****THE****WINDS****of****WAR****
    http://www.timebomb2000.com/vb/showt...*of****WAR****

    ====================

    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/world...=.d5c3e677c9e0

    Asia & Pacific

    7 rebels, Indian soldier killed in Kashmir fighting

    by Associated Press
    August 4 at 3:37 AM

    SRINAGAR, India — At least seven rebels and an Indian army soldier were killed in gunbattles in disputed Kashmir, triggering violent protests by residents opposed to Indian rule, officials said Saturday.

    Army soldiers and counterinsurgency police cordoned off a neighborhood in the suburbs of southern Shopian town overnight, leading to an exchange of fire with rebels, police said. One militant was killed overnight while four more died early Saturday.

    The fighting sparked protests and clashes as hundreds of residents tried to march to the site of the battle to help the militants escape. Government forces fired warning shots, shotgun pellets and tear gas at the stone-throwing protesters, injuring at least 15 people, three of them critically.

    Separately, two rebels and a soldier were killed in the northwestern Sopore area on Friday, authorities said.

    Meanwhile, security guards posted at the residence of Farooq Abdullah, India’s member of parliament and Kashmir’s former top elected official, shot and killed a young man after he allegedly forced his entry into the residence on Saturday, top police officer S.P. Vaid said.

    Vaid said the man traveling in a car was unarmed and gatecrashed into the residence in southern Jammu city. He scuffled with security guards before he was shot to death.

    Abdullah was not at the residence.

    The slain man’s family rejected the police version of the incident, saying that the residence was not on his route to the gym where he had gone in the morning. They sought an independent probe. There was no independent account of the shooting.
    Nuclear-armed India and Pakistan each administer part of Kashmir, but both claim it in its entirety.

    Most Kashmiris support the rebel cause that the territory be united either under Pakistani rule or as an independent country while also participating in civilian street protests against Indian control. In recent years, mainly young Kashmiris have displayed open solidarity with rebels and sought to protect them by engaging troops in street clashes during military operations.

    Rebels have been fighting Indian control since 1989. India accuses Pakistan of arming and training the rebels, a charge Pakistan denies.

    Nearly 70,000 people have been killed in the uprising and the ensuing Indian military crackdown.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    http://www.france24.com/en/20180804-...-toll-rises-35

    4 August 2018 - 12H33

    Afghans bury victims of mosque attack as toll rises to 35

    KHOST (AFGHANISTAN) (AFP) - Hundreds of mourners Saturday buried the victims of a twin suicide attack on a Shiite mosque in eastern Afghanistan, as the death toll rose to 35, officials said.

    Two suicide bombers dressed as women struck a Shiite mosque in Gardez, capital of Paktia province, Friday as it was crowded with worshippers for weekly prayers.

    The burqa-clad attackers shot at the mosque's security guards before opening fire on worshippers then detonating their explosives.

    The death toll from Friday's mosque attack in Gardez has jumped to 35 with 94 wounded," Paktia governor Shamim Khan Katawazi told AFP.

    Provincial police chief Raz Mohammad Mandozai confirmed the toll.

    Officials had earlier said 29 people were killed and more than 80 wounded.

    "Today, we held funeral ceremony and buried all the martyred of Friday's attack," a weeping Sayed Moharram, who lost his 16-year old son, told AFP from a graveyard on the outskirts of Gardez where hundreds of people attended the ceremony.

    "It is very difficult for me to accept my son is no more with me," he said.

    Haji Sultan, 70, who also attended, accused the government of "negligence" in providing security for the Shiite minority.

    "The enemies of Afghanistan want to create division by carrying out attacks on Shiite people, but they cannot win, it will further increase hatred towards the enemies," he said.

    There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.

    The Taliban denied involvement but in recent years the Islamic State group has carried out attacks on Shiites in Afghanistan.

    The attack comes as urban areas across Afghanistan have been rocked by a surge in violence in recent months, with both Islamic State and Taliban insurgents targeting security forces and government installations.

    The Taliban have not claimed a major attack in a city for weeks as they come under increased pressure to agree to peace talks with the Afghan government.

    But IS has carried out multiple attacks in the eastern city of Jalalabad and the capital Kabul in recent months, targeting everything from government ministries to a midwife training centre.

    Last month an IS suicide bomber blew himself up near Kabul international airport, killing 23 people including AFP driver Mohammad Akhtar.

    The uptick in violence comes as US and Afghan forces intensify ground and air offensives against IS, and the Taliban step up their turf war with the group.

    Earlier this week more than 150 IS fighters surrendered in northern Afghanistan -- in a move that Afghan security forces and the Taliban hailed as the end of the extremist group in the north of the country.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world...cid=spartandhp

    Iran protesters attack religious school: conservative media

    17 hrs ago
    AFP

    Iranian protesters have attacked a religious school in Karaj province near Tehran, the conservative Fars news agency reported Saturday, as sporadic protests simmered ahead of the reimposition of US sanctions.

    Iranian authorities have barely mentioned days of protests in the major cities of Isfahan, Shiraz, Mashhad and Tehran, driven by concerns over the economy as well as wider anger at the political system.

    During past unrest, conservative outlets have focused on attacks against sensitive symbols such as religious buildings as a way of tarnishing the protests.

    "At 9 pm (1530 GMT on Friday) they attacked the school and tried to break the doors down and burn things," Fars quoted the head of the school in the town of Ishtehad, Hojatoleslam Hindiani, as saying.

    It gave only his clerical rank -- Hojatoleslam -- not his given name.

    "They were about 500 people and they chanted against the system but they were dispersed by the riot police and some have been arrested," Hindiani said.

    "These people came with rocks and broke the sign and all the windows of the prayer house and they were chanting against the system."

    - 'Death to the dictator' -
    Videos on social media in recent days have shown people marching in the streets of several cities, chanting "Death to the dictator" and other radical slogans.

    But these have been impossible to verify and the authorities have charged that they are promoted by foreign-based opposition groups funded by the US, Israel and Saudi Arabia.

    Foreign media are barred from observing or filming "unauthorised" protests.

    But the government of President Hassan Rouhani also faces opposition from conservatives and religious leaders, who have long opposed his outreach to the West and are keen to leverage anger over corruption to unseat him.

    The conservative Qom News published a video of a protest in the holy city of Mashhad after Friday prayers, in which a cleric tells a sizeable crowd: "Most of your representatives don't care about people's problems.

    "Most have two passports and their families are abroad. The judiciary should find these people and arrest them," the cleric says, to chants of "Allahu Akbar" from the crowd.

    So far, social media reports suggest the current protests are far from the scale of the unrest seen in December and January, when at least 25 people were killed in demonstrations that spread to dozens of towns and cities.

    - Sanctions return -
    But all Iranians are concerned about the struggling economy, especially since the United States walked out of the nuclear deal in May and announced it would reimpose full sanctions in two stages.

    The first phase hits on Tuesday with blocks on financial transactions and imports of raw materials, as well as sanctions on Iran's automotive sector and commercial aircraft purchases.

    Iran Air announced it would take delivery of five ATR aircraft from the French-Italian firm on Sunday, sneaking under the wire before the sanctions return.

    Iran says the sanctions are endangering lives by blocking the sale of new planes and spare parts for its ageing fleets.

    Iran's Aseman Airlines was ordered to ground its fleet of ATR planes in February after one of them crashed in the Zagros mountains, killing all 66 people onboard.

    Remaining sanctions -- including on Iran's oil and gas sector and central bank -- will resume on November 5.

    Although smaller foreign firms have vowed to work around the US measures, multinationals such as France's Total and Peugeot, and Germany's Siemens have already said they will have to pull out.

    Increased US hostility has also driven a run on Iran's currency, which has lost around two-thirds of its value in six months.

    It is not yet clear how all this will affect ordinary Iranians, but a Western diplomat in Tehran who monitors the economy said prices of basic foods were already creeping up.

    "We are already seeing car prices going through the roof over fears about raw material imports," she said.

    "In November, when oil sales are affected, we will have a clearer view of the impact on daily lives."

    She said the collapse in the value of the rial was not driven by purely economic factors but instead by people rushing to buy gold or hard currency as a safe haven for their savings because they do not trust the government to improve the situation.

    "There is a massive loss of confidence in the financial system and the government's ability to control things and withstand sanctions," she told AFP.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...ity-over-china

    Cracks appear in 'invincible' Xi Jinping's authority over China

    Intellectuals voice criticism as analysts point to disharmony in the Communist party

    Lily Kuo in Beijing
    Sat 4 Aug 2018 00.00 EDT

    Rumours have swirled in Beijing in recent weeks that China’s seemingly invincible leader, Xi Jinping, is in trouble, dogged by a protracted trade war with the US, a slowing economy and a public health scandal involving thousands of defective vaccines given to children.

    Xi’s name seemed to have disappeared for a while from the cover of the People’s Daily, replaced with articles about his deputy, Li Keqiang, and large portraits of him were said to have been taken down after a young woman filmed herself throwing ink at his image.

    On 13 July, online reports claimed there was gunfire in central Beijing as a coup unfolded. A cryptic slogan emerged online: “No. 1 will rest while Ocean takes over the military,” a reference to a rival politician taking power.

    For now, Xi remains in full control of the government and party, and mentions of him in state-run media are as frequent as ever, but the hearsay is a sign all is not right with China’s most powerful leader in decades.

    “Such rumours may well lack credibility, but they do offer some indication that the disharmony within China’s party elite is increasing ,” the Hong Kong political analyst Lee Yee wrote in in the online journal China Heritage.

    This week, an essay by a law professor at Tsinghua University, one of the country’s top schools, made the rounds on Chinese social media. The essay - Our dread now and our hopes - by Xu Zhangrun offered one of the most direct criticisms of the Chinese government under Xi’s direction.

    Referring to Xi only as “that official”, Xu accused him of reversing years of reforms, effectively returning China to an era of totalitarian politics and a style of dictatorship last seen under Mao Zedong.

    “After 40 years of reform, overnight we’re back to the ancien régime,” he wrote, calling for the return of term limits, abolished under Xi earlier this year, the rehabilitation of those punished for the 4 June pro-democracy protests crushed by the government and an end to the cult of personality surrounding Xi.

    “The party is going to great lengths to create a new idol, and in the process it is offering up to the world an image of China as modern totalitarianism,” he wrote.

    Xu is one among several intellectuals voicing dissent. Zi Zhongyun, an international politics scholar, blamed the US-China trade war on the Xi administration’s failure to implement reforms in an article in June. Wenguang Sun, a retired professor at Shandong University published an essay in July urging Xi to stop spending money abroad on projects such as the Belt and Road initiative, and spend it at home instead.

    “For the first time since Xi Jinping gained power in 2012, he is facing a pushback from within the party, from liberal intellectuals and so forth,” said Willy Lam, a senior fellow at the Jamestown Foundation and adjunct professor at the Center for China Studies at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

    The pushback is also emerging in other ways. A group of alumni from Tsinghua published an open letter on Wednesday calling for the sacking of a professor over his claims China had emerged as the world’s top superpower.

    Hu Angang, who claimed in a series of speeches that China had surpassed the US in economic strength and technological know-how, is one of many who have echoed Xi’s claims that China has entered a new era of power on the world stage, reversing his predecessors’ more muted global aspirations.

    “[Hu] misleads government policy, confuses the public, causes other countries to be overly cautious about China and for neighbours to be afraid of China. Overall, it does harm to the country and its people,” the former students said, according to images of the letter posted online.

    Such criticism is an indirect rebuke of Xi’s more assertive foreign policy, and comes as his opponents use economic troubles and failed trade negotiations with the US as pretext to question him, according to analysts.

    That dissent, while very unlikely to push Xi from power, could impede what had appeared to be his absolute hold over the party and the government. “His position is safe,” Lam said. “It’s just his authority has been dented to some extent. His authority has suffered.”

  5. #5
    In China, it comes down to Xi Jinping wants to put all the Wealth of China into State control. This means if you are a rich party member you will lose all your wealth to the State the same as ordinary business people. This is why money is bleeding from China.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...tants-in-sinai

    Politics

    Egyptian Troops Kill 52 Suspected Militants in Northern Sinai

    THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
    August 5, 2018, 12:47 AM PDT

    Cairo (AP) -- Egypt says its security forces have killed at least 52 suspected militants in recent days in the restive northern Sinai Peninsula.

    The military said in a statement Sunday that another 49 suspected militants have been arrested. It says it destroyed 26 hideouts and weapons depots, and dismantled 64 explosive devices.

    The military says airstrikes destroyed 32 vehicles containing weapons and ammunition in the Western Desert and in the south.

    It wasn't possible to independently confirm the claims as access to the northern Sinai is heavily restricted.

    Egypt launched a nationwide operation against militants in February. It has struggled to combat a long-running insurgency in the Sinai that gained strength after the military overthrew a divisive Islamist president in 2013 and which is now affiliated with the Islamic State group.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    Continued from last week's WoW thread's posting by Lilbitsnana...http://www.timebomb2000.com/vb/showt...49#post6960949

    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    https://www.politico.eu/article/germ...ense-spending/

    German bomb debate goes nuclear

    The security community has become unnerved in the face of Donald Trump’s threats, and some are thinking the unthinkable.

    By MATTHEW KARNITSCHNIG
    8/3/18, 4:03 AM CET Updated 8/4/18, 6:55 AM CET

    BERLIN — Imagine a nuclear-armed Germany.

    No, this isn’t a fantasy à la “The Man in the High Castle” (Philip K. Dick’s dystopian novel in which the Nazis got the bomb first and dropped it on Washington to win World War II), but a real debate, happening in present-day Berlin.

    As Germany’s foreign policy establishment becomes increasingly convinced that Donald Trump’s aggressive rhetoric toward Berlin and NATO represents a seminal shift in transatlantic relations, some are daring to think the unthinkable.

    “Do We Need the Bomb?” read the front page headline in Welt am Sonntag, one of the country’s largest Sunday newspapers.

    “For the first time since 1949, the Federal Republic of Germany is no longer under the U.S.’s nuclear umbrella,” Christian Hacke, a prominent German political scientist, wrote in an essay in the paper.

    “It’s crucial for Germany and Europe that we have a strategic debate” — Ulrike Franke, analyst with the European Council on Foreign Relations
    For Hacke, the next step is clear: “National defense on the basis of a nuclear deterrent must be given priority in light of new transatlantic uncertainties and potential confrontations.” Counting on a European solution to materialize is “illusory” because national interests are too different, he argued.

    It would be easier to dismiss the article as the ramblings of an eccentric academic were Hacke not a fixture of Germany’s foreign policy establishment and a respected university professor.

    That the debate is happening at all speaks to how unnerved Germany’s security community has become in the face of Trump’s threats, including his warning at last month’s NATO summit that the U.S. might “go it alone.”

    This isn’t the first time Germany has considered its nuclear options. In the early 1960s, then-Chancellor Konrad Adenauer, who had his own doubts about the reliability of the U.S. as an ally, approached Charles de Gaulle to see if he might include Germany in the Force de frappe, France’s nuclear strike force. He was politely rejected.

    A few years after Adenauer left office, Germany ratified the 1968 nuclear non-proliferation treaty, which bars it from developing atomic weapons. Under the so-called Two Plus Four Agreement, a 1990 treaty between the two Germanys and World War II allies that paved the way to German reunification, the country also committed to eschew nuclear weapons.

    Those agreements are why the prospect of a nuclear Germany remains extremely unlikely.

    “If Germany was to relinquish its status as a non-nuclear power, what would prevent Turkey or Poland, for example, from following suit?” Wolfgang Ischinger, the head of the Munich Security Conference and a former German ambassador to the U.S., asked in response to Hacke’s essay. “Germany as the gravedigger of the international non-proliferation regime? Who can want that?”

    Indeed, given how important maintaining the international order is to Germany’s political establishment, it’s hard to imagine it taking such a drastic step.

    Nonetheless, even some who oppose Germany going nuclear are grateful for the debate.

    “It’s crucial for Germany and Europe that we have a strategic debate,” said Ulrike Franke, an analyst with the European Council on Foreign Relations. “What Germany is slowly realizing is that the general structure of the European security system is not prepared for the future.”

    ‘Nothing flies, nothing floats and nothing runs’
    For years, German politicians have avoided discussing defense, worried about alienating an electorate skeptical of devoting more resources to the military.

    After decades under the U.S. nuclear shield, most Germans came to take such protection for granted (if they were aware of it at all).

    But Trump’s persistent criticism of Germany’s modest defense spending, currently about half of NATO’s 2 percent of GDP target, is forcing the political class to confront the issue.

    It’s not just Trump. A steady stream of press reports in recent months has revealed the woeful state of Germany’s military. In May, for example, only four of Germany’s 124 Eurofighter jets could actually fly. The navy and army faced similar readiness problems.

    “Nothing flies, nothing floats and nothing runs,” Hacke said.

    Another concern is recruitment. Since ending conscription in 2011, Germany has relied on volunteers. Trouble is, there aren’t enough of them.

    For many Germans, there’s still a stigma attached to wearing a military uniform. Even some officers prefer to wear civilian clothes to and from work to avoid bad looks and taunts.

    The personnel shortfall has become so severe that the Bundeswehr, as the army is known, is considering recruiting foreigners.

    Despite such problems and the tense security environment in Europe, only 15 percent of Germans support spending more than the 1.5 percent of GDP Merkel committed to pay out annually by 2024, according to a poll last month.

    Ischinger and others have suggested that instead of building its own nuclear capability, Germany might consider helping to fund France’s arsenal as part of a Europe-wide “extended deterrence” strategy under the banner of a European defense union.

    Even if Paris was to agree, however, such a shift would take years to realize.

    A study last year by the research department of the Bundestag, Germany’s parliament, concluded that while there aren’t any legal restrictions to co-financing another country’s nuclear arsenal, there would be no discernible advantage for Germany beyond the status quo. In other words, Germany’s membership of NATO and the EU already put it under France and the U.K.’s nuclear protection.

    Franke, of the ECFR, concurred, saying that almost any scenario that would justify Germany employing nuclear weapons against an aggressor would prompt France to take the same step. “There is de facto a nuclear umbrella, even if there isn’t a special provision for it,” she said.

    Considering Germany’s aversion to all things nuclear, it’s unlikely the German public would go along with it any time soon.

    “It took us nine years just to buy armed drones,” Franke said.

    Comments 30

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    And to add another "Dot"...

    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    https://www.dw.com/en/germans-debate...men/a-44962067

    Germans debate return of military conscription and service for men and women

    Germany's ruling CDU party has launched a debate on reinstating military conscription and offering young men and women a chance to serve their country in other ways. A recent poll shows Germans are in favor of the idea.

    Date 05.08.2018
    Author Darko Janjevic (with EPD, dpa)

    As the German military struggles to fill its ranks, representatives of Angela Merkel's CDU party started a nationwide discussion on the return of mandatory military service.

    The general conscription was scrapped in 2011 after Berlin decided to professionalize its troops. Prior to this decision, all young males were obligated to either serve in the nation's military, the Bundeswehr, or perform an alternative service in civilian areas such as emergency management or medical care for a limited period of time.

    Currently, the Bundeswehr consists only of career soldiers and long-term contract troopers, although the army still offers an option of short-term paid military service to young volunteers.

    Read more: German army to get €4-billion spending boost

    In a surprising move on Friday, however, the CDU Secretary General Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer pledged to "very intensively" discuss military service and mandatory conscription, according to the daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ).

    Video

    Chance 'to give something back'

    Kramp-Karrenbauer said she had been touring the country and meeting CDU members to discuss ideas which would be presented at the CDU's party conference in December. The topic of mandatory service apparently resonated with the conservative party's base, which fears the loss of social cohesion.

    The politician told FAZ she did not expect a simple reinstating of the military draft, but remained vague on specifics. "There are many possibilities to serve," she later said on Twitter.

    Other ranking CDU members were quick to back Kramp-Karrenbauer's initiative, but kept equally vague on the details. The party's youth wing leader Paul Ziemak spoke of a "community year" which would see young students take part in some sort of a mandatory service program. The term itself is a throwback to the "social year" which had been offered as an alternative to serving in the Bundeswehr.

    Read more: Germany's new volunteer military sees high dropout rate

    "We live in a wonderful, affluent country," the 32-year-old told Bild am Sonntag. "A community year gives the opportunity to give something back and, at the same time, to strengthen the country's unity."

    Video

    'Horrendous waste of money'

    CDU lawmaker Oswin Veith commented that youths could serve with the Bundeswehr, but also with first responders or medical institutions. "It should last for 12 months and apply to young men and women over the age of 18," he said. Several other CDU politicians also stressed the program would apply to both men and women.

    Read more: Females in the ranks - ten years of armed women in the Bundeswehr

    At the same time, CDU's point man on defense in the German parliament, Henning Otte, responded with skepticism.

    "Old-fashioned universal conscription is not going to help us with our current security challenges," he said, adding that youths could serve in other areas, such as firefighting.

    Video

    Some politicians from the SPD, the CDU's junior partner in the grand coalition, said the idea was worth considering. Others, including the Parliamentary Commissioner for Defense, Hans-Peter Bartels, insisted that mandatory service would clash with Germany's ban on forced labor.

    "I think it is very unlikely to assign 700,000 young men and women every year to various mandatory assignments, as likable as this idea may sound," he said.

    The business-friendly FDP called the proposal "absurd" and warned of the "horrendous waste of money" it could bring. Other opposition parties in the parliament, the Left and the Green party, also oppose the idea.

    At the same time, right-wing AFD came out in favor of reviving conscription. The position comes as no surprise, as the AFD previously floated the scheme. On Twitter, AFD's parliamentary group leader Alice Weidel said the suspension was "a grave mistake."

    Alice Weidel

    @Alice_Weidel
    ++ Ja zur #Wehrpflicht! ++
    Die Aussetzung war ein grober Fehler. Sie muss aufgehoben und die #Bundeswehr wieder zu einem attraktiven Arbeitgeber werden, der seine originäre Aufgabe, nämlich die Landesverteidigung, wieder bewältigen kann.#AfD
    ➡️ https://www.facebook.com/aliceweidel...type=3&theater

    7:06 AM - Aug 5, 2018
    953
    407 people are talking about this
    Weidel added that the Bundeswehr needed to become "an attractive employer again" in order to be able to fulfill its defense duties.

    Moving on AFD's turf?

    Some analysts have speculated that the CDU launched the initiative as a wayto wring conservative votes from the populist AFD.According to a recent online poll, the prospect of reinstating the military conscription is very popular among AFD supporters, with 60.6 percent of them saying they were "strongly in favor" of the idea.

    Germans in general also support the draft, according to poll published by the survey center Civey. The poll, based on responses by 5,046 people between early May and early August, shows 55.6 percent are in favor of the idea, as opposed to 39.6 percent against it.

    After discussing the draft on their party conference in December, the CDU is expected to make it a part of their platform for 2020.

    Gallery

    DW RECOMMENDS
    German army mulls recruiting foreign EU nationals to boost recruitment
    While both governing parties supported the idea, the SPD said that citizenship must be given to new soldiers to avoid the risk of it becoming a mercenary army. (22.07.2018)

    German army to get €4-billion spending boost
    The German army is set to benefit from a multibillion-euro spending increase, according to Finance Minister Olaf Scholz's draft defense budget. Germany has been under pressure to contribute more as a NATO partner. (03.07.2018)

    Females in the ranks: Ten years of armed women in the Bundeswehr
    Ten years ago the EU's top court cleared the way for female Bundeswehr soldiers to be armed. One of those women is Stefanie Linsener whose time with the Bundeswehr has included a four-month tour in Afghanistan. (11.01.2010)

    First day of service for Germany's all-voluntary recruits
    Over 3,400 German men and women began military service on Monday as the first group of exclusively volunteer recruits. After over 50 years of conscripting soldiers, the Bundeswehr is now completely voluntary. (04.07.2011)

    Germany's new volunteer military sees high dropout rate
    Less than half a year after Germany did away with compulsory military conscription, the Bundeswehr's transition to a volunteer army is proving rockier than expected. (21.12.2011)

    Germans unhappy with Merkel government amid migration spat
    The German government's popularity has taken a battering following a protracted internal dispute over migration policy. A new poll shows only one in five Germans is happy with the leadership's performance. (05.07.2018)

    Germany's NATO missions
    Since West Germany's accession to NATO, Berlin has supported numerous operations involving the trans-Atlantic alliance. Since 1990, Germany's Bundeswehr has been deployed on "out of area" missions as well. (19.02.2018)

    WWW LINKS
    Frankfurter Allgemeine
    Kramp-Karrenbauers geschicktes Angebot

    Bild
    CDU-Politiker wollen Comeback der Wehrpflicht

    AUDIOS AND VIDEOS ON THE TOPIC
    German army starts training civilian reservists
    New challenges for the German army
    The German Military - Filling the Ranks

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    Brad
    ‏ @usafshortwave
    9m9 minutes ago

    US officials: First batch of US sanctions against Iran will go into force at 0401 GMT Tuesday


    ^^^ that will be 12:01 AM (one minute after midnight tonight/Tuesday morning) Eastern, 11:01 PM tonight Central, 10:01 PM tonight Mountain, 9:01 PM tonight Pacific
    Last edited by Lilbitsnana; 08-06-2018 at 11:01 AM.
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    Guy Elster
    ‏Verified account @guyelster
    54m54 minutes ago

    #BREAKING US National Security adviser Bolton says blocking strait of Hormuz would be #Iran's worst mistake, but he believes #Tehran is bluffing on threat


    ^^^ Personally, I think they will try something, what and to what extent, I don't know. Even just a big backup or slowdown will take us to the edge, if not over it.
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    Quote Originally Posted by Lilbitsnana View Post
    Guy Elster
    ‏Verified account @guyelster
    54m54 minutes ago

    #BREAKING US National Security adviser Bolton says blocking strait of Hormuz would be #Iran's worst mistake, but he believes #Tehran is bluffing on threat


    ^^^ Personally, I think they will try something, what and to what extent, I don't know. Even just a big backup or slowdown will take us to the edge, if not over it.
    Yeah. The regime in Tehran is in a situation now that any weakness perceived by "the Street" is their undoing, but doing anything to appear "strong" is just as likely to kick the chair out from under them.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    The Jerusalem Post
    ‏Verified account @Jerusalem_Post
    12m12 minutes ago

    BREAKING Turkish lira hits record low after U.S. reviews duty-free access http://dlvr.it/Qf1Mhq
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    Guy Elster
    ‏Verified account @guyelster
    9m9 minutes ago

    In the 10th anniversary of the war, #Russia warns that if Georgia would join NATO, a terrible conflict could be triggered
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    https://www.militarytimes.com/flashp...%20Bird%20Brie

    Flashpoints

    3 Czech service members killed, 1 American injured in Afghanistan attack

    By: The Associated Press  
    1 day ago

    KABUL, Afghanistan — A Taliban suicide bomber killed three NATO forces on a foot patrol in eastern Afghanistan on Sunday in an attack that also wounded a U.S. service member and two Afghan troops, NATO said in a statement.

    The Czech military confirmed that the three killed were Czech service members.
    The Taliban claimed the attack, which took place near Charakar, the provincial capital of the Parwan province.

    "My thoughts and prayers, along with those of all of the 41-contributing Resolute Support nations, are with the families and friends of our fallen and wounded service members, and our injured Afghan brothers and their families," said U.S. Army Gen. John Nicholson, the commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan. "Their sacrifice will endure in both our hearts and history, and further strengthen our resolve."

    -
    Why should the US stay in Afghanistan? Here’s what the top commander there said.
    US forces needed to further suppress militant groups, realize Afghan gains, Nicholson said.
    By: Tara Copp
    -

    Czech Defense Minister Lubomir Metnar also offered his condolences. The Czechs had recently approved a plan to deploy 390 soldiers in Afghanistan through 2020, up from the current 230, as part of the NATO-led Resolute Support mission.

    “The tragic death of our three soldiers has hit me very much, and I want to express my deep condolences to all families and loved ones,” said Metnar.

    Czech Republic President Miloš Zema also expressed sympathy to the relatives of the victims, but said the incident should not discourage the fight against international terrorism.

    NATO formally concluded its combat mission in Afghanistan in 2014, but some 16,000 U.S. and other NATO troops are providing support and training to Afghan forces and carrying out counterterrorism missions.

    Last month, the Taliban struck a NATO convoy with a suicide car bomb in the eastern Logar province. The attack killed two civilians and damaged a NATO vehicle.

    -
    Army ponders changes after insider attack in Afghanistan
    It’s too early to tell if training or other changes must be made in light of an insider attack in Afghanistan that killed one American soldier and wounded two others, because there’s some uncertainty about whether the assailant was a disgruntled Afghan soldier or an insurgent infiltrator, the Army’s top officer says.
    By: Lolita Baldor
    -

    Elsewhere in Afghanistan, the Taliban attacked a newly constructed district headquarters in the southern Uruzgan province early Saturday, killing four Afghan soldiers, according to Mohammad Maruf Ahmadzai, the provincial police chief. He said nine Taliban fighters were killed in the ensuing gunbattle.

    The Taliban claimed the attack and said they captured soldiers alive.

    Both the Taliban and a local Islamic State affiliate regularly target Afghan security forces. The ISIS affiliate has also carried out several attacks targeting the country’s Shiite minority. On Sunday, ISIS claimed a suicide attack two days earlier on a mosque in the city of Gardez, south of Kabul. The attack killed at least 29 people and wounded another 81.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    Guy Elster
    ‏Verified account @guyelster
    18m18 minutes ago

    #BREAKING #Nigeria security forces block the entrance of the parliament for unknown reasons: Reuters


    21 second video
    http://twitter.com/i/status/1026740887567720448

    Parliament members (at least some, if not all) turned away and staff not allowed on premises.
    Last edited by Lilbitsnana; 08-07-2018 at 04:45 AM.
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  16. #16
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    Guy Elster
    ‏Verified account @guyelster
    49m49 minutes ago

    #BREAKING #Trump says anyone trading with #Iran will not trade with US, escalating he row with Europe
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  17. #17
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    GermanForeignOffice
    ‏Verified account @GermanyDiplo
    30m30 minutes ago

    FM @HeikoMaas: The #JCPOA works. We are determined to protect European companies operating legitimately in Iran. People in Iran should get something out of the agreement. In return, we expect Iran to fulfil all obligations under the JCPOA.
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  18. #18
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    Instant News Alerts
    ‏ @InstaNewsAlerts
    5m5 minutes ago

    #Frankfurt airport terminal evacuated after 'unauthorised person gets past security and disappears'. #Germany
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  19. #19
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    Instant News Alerts
    ‏ @InstaNewsAlerts
    5m5 minutes ago

    #Russian Foreign Ministry: We condemn any unilateral sanctions against #Iran without a UN Security Council resolution.
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  20. #20

    3

    EndGameWW3 Retweeted
    Guy Elster
    Guy Elster
    @guyelster
    #Israel has killed the senior Syrian scientist Aziz Asbar, according to spy agency in the middle east
    Embedded
    2:21 AM · Aug 7, 2018

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    Hummm…..

    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    https://thestrategybridge.org/the-br...future-warfare

    Nuclear Constraints and Concepts of Future Warfare

    Zachary L. Morris
    August 7, 2018

    The United States Army and the Russian Army view each other as potential future adversaries. General Mark Milley, the U.S. Army Chief of Staff, has spoken extensively about the threat Russia poses and its adversarial nature.[1] Likewise, the 2014 “Military Doctrine of the Russian Federation” also identifies the U.S. and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization as the primary threat to Russia.[2] While the U.S. and Russian militaries view each other in an adversarial way, both have developed different conclusions about future warfare based on the current environment and the constraining impact of nuclear weapons. The U.S. Army has returned to emphasizing large-scale operations against near-peer threats like Russia, as outlined in its recently updated doctrine in Field Manual 3-0: Operations.[3] In contrast, while Russia has retained some large formations—designed to deter attacks and if needed fight under nuclear conditions—Moscow has turned towards more ambiguous methods employing smaller, more agile conventional formations to achieve external political objectives.[4] In fact, General Valery Gerasimov, the Chief of the Russian General Staff, has suggested the greatest threat to Russia is from a U.S. sponsored political movement and other U.S. strategic capabilities, but not large-scale conventional operations.[5] Russia’s preparation for future warfare better appreciates the realities of nuclear constraints; rather than preparing for large-scale operations, the U.S. should prepare for small, politically constrained, ambiguous, limited conflict with Russia.

    One of the principal problems that will constrain future military operations and warfare is the presence of nuclear weapons. Numerous authors and studies articulate how nuclear weapons limit the use of force while simultaneously increasing the risk of escalation during large-scale conflicts between nuclear armed adversaries.[6] Nuclear constraints were evident during the 1999 Indo-Pakistan conflict and the 1969 Sino-Soviet War. Both remained extremely limited but still almost escalated to a nuclear exchange.[7] The constraints and risks outlined by these examples illustrate that future warfare between nuclear-armed adversaries will likely be limited, small-scale conflicts, or proxy wars, because if they do not a nuclear exchange is the likely result. Further, any nuclear exchange would both significantly threaten human life and nullify the importance of conventional large-scale combat operations.[8]

    Russian concepts of future warfare appear well positioned to minimize America’s conventional military strength and maximize Moscow’s success within a nuclear constrained environment. Moscow knows it cannot match conventional U.S. capability or strength head-to-head.[9] However, due to the strategic environment and Russia’s view of the future, the Russian military and government recognize that large-scale warfare is unlikely.[10] Moscow recognizes the limits of force imposed by nuclear weapons and relies on a tough concept of strategic deterrence and nuclear diplomacy.[11] In fact, the concept of de-escalation emphasizes that if Moscow faces a large-scale conventional attack it could respond with a limited nuclear strike.[12] Further, current Russian doctrine states that Moscow retains the right to employ nuclear weapons in response to significant conventional attacks.[13] To operate within nuclear constraints and the environment, Russia’s efforts increasingly emphasize politically-focused operations.[14] General Gerasimov has even stated that warfare is now conducted in a four to one ratio of non-military to military measures.[15] Politically focused operations have enabled Russia’s efforts to blend multiple aspects of warfare—including war and peace, the levels of war, and various forms or methods of warfare—to better achieve political objectives below the threshold of conventional responses.[16] Russia has also begun transitioning from large corps and division formations to smaller brigade and battalion formations to better support political warfare while remaining below the threshold of major combat and also attempting to prevent escalation.[17] Thus, the Russian military seems poised to exploit opportunities using limited incremental operations behind their nuclear shield while controlling escalation if war occurs.

    In contrast to the Russian view of future conflict, the U.S. Army has focused on large-scale operations for conflict against peer adversaries. Recent U.S. Army doctrine explicitly focuses on division, corps, and theater army formations and operations for high-intensity combat operations.[18] Further, the new doctrine emphasizes many basic concepts of the American way of warfare including offensive operations, reliance on technology, rapid aggressive maneuver, deep operations, and attacking command and control and other strategic capabilities. This doctrine, and the associated concept of future warfare, is founded on the assumptions that 1) major combat operations against a near-peer state competitor are likely in the near future and, 2) that clear victory is possible.[19] However, these assumptions are compromised by the risk posed by nuclear escalation. The presence of nuclear weapons makes the probability of large-scale conventional warfare low and ensures a decisive victory is unlikely. Further, many of the concepts espoused by U.S. Army doctrine are escalatory—attacking command and control structures, integrated air defense systems, and weapons of mass destruction facilities, for example—and increase the risk of inadvertent escalation. While Field Manual 3-0: Operations recognizes the likelihood of use of weapons of mass destruction would probably increase in a highly destructive conflict between near-peer adversaries, especially one between the U.S. and Russia, the doctrine provides little analysis of how to fight within the constraints imposed by nuclear weapons.[20] Inadequate guidance, and escalatory concepts, are dangerous because once policy makers authorize military operations, military leaders may take action and select targets, often based on doctrine, with potentially limited or ambiguous political oversight. Further, military leaders may not have the time, or the ability, to clearly articulate potential risks and underlying assumptions to political leaders prior to each action. Thus, current American doctrine for fighting a nuclear-armed, near-peer adversary displays significant gaps and is ill suited for a constrained environment; following the doctrine may well result in inadvertent escalation.

    Russia recognizes and tries to maximize the use of nuclear constraints, while U.S. concepts are undermined and diminished by nuclear weapons.

    A nuclear-constrained environment invalidates the two primary assumptions on which current U.S. doctrine and concepts are based. While the U.S. Army has avoided the implications of nuclear weapons, Russia has embraced nuclear reality and increased planning, training, exercises, concept development, and considerations of the role of nuclear weapons. Russian officials have threatened to employ a nuclear strike should NATO attempt military efforts in Crimea, and Moscow includes simulated nuclear strikes in most exercises.[21] It is clear Russia recognizes and tries to maximize the use of nuclear constraints, while U.S. concepts are undermined and diminished by nuclear weapons.

    Since the United States’ near-peer adversaries possess nuclear weapons, the U.S. Army needs to prepare for small, politically constrained, ambiguous, limited conflict. There are three actions the U.S. military can take to address the dislocation between current concepts for fighting a near-peer adversary and the reality of nuclear constraints. First, the U.S. should continue revitalizing low-yield and flexible nuclear options.[22] Low-yield nuclear options will increase strategic flexibility and help deter Russia or other near-peers from using limited nuclear options by facilitating a potential response in kind. Second, the U.S. Army should initiate rapid concept development for operating in constrained, limited warfare environments to prevent accidental escalation to the nuclear threshold. Concept development should include increased training and exercises with the Army operating in a limited warfare capacity. Because of these constraints, the Army should organize and prepare for small, limited, politically focused, ambiguous conflicts using a strategy of exhaustion, rather than a strategy of annihilation. A strategy of annihilation will most likely lead to nuclear escalation. Third, because of these changes, the U.S. Army should refocus on smaller unit combat operations at the battalion and brigade level. Small units that are rapidly deployable and strategically flexible could facilitate the U.S. fighting small limited warfare in a coherent manner without accidentally escalating the size or scope of the conflict. Without a reorientation on the future, the U.S. Army doctrine and concepts are not useful and potentially limit policymakers’ options, or worse, risk accidental nuclear escalation.

    Zachary L. Morris is a U.S. Army officer and a student at the School of Advanced Military Studies, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. The views expressed here are the author’s alone and do not reflect those of the U.S. Army School of Advanced Military Studies, the U.S. Army, the Department of Defense, or the U.S. Government.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    Breaking911
    ‏Verified account @Breaking911
    26m26 minutes ago

    JUST IN: North Korea has not taken the necessary steps on denuclearization, White House adviser Bolton says - Reuters
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  23. #23
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    Amichai Stein
    ‏Verified account @AmichaiStein1
    42m42 minutes ago

    #BREAKING: @AmbJohnBolton to @FoxNews: US looking to impose other sanctions on Iran
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world...cid=spartanntp

    China claims to have successfully tested its first hypersonic aircraft

    By Jessie Yeung, CNN 6 hrs ago

    China claims to have successfully tested its first hypersonic aircraft, a big step forward in aerospace technology that could intensify pressure on the US military.

    The China Academy of Aerospace Aerodynamics (CAAA), based in Beijing and part of the state-owned China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation, conducted the first test of the "Starry Sky-2" aircraft last Friday.

    Hypersonic vehicles are not simply high-speed -- they travel at least at five times the speed of sound. That's fast enough to travel across the US in around 30 minutes.

    According to a CAAA statement released Monday, the Starry Sky-2 reached a top speed of Mach 6 -- six times the speed of sound, or 4,563 miles (7,344 kilometers) per hour.

    The test was a "complete success," claimed CAAA, which posted photos of the test launch on social media platform WeChat. "The Starry Sky-2 flight test project was strongly innovative and technically difficult, confronting a number of cutting-edge international technical challenges."

    The CAAA did not indicate what the new aircraft or technology would be used for, other than to say they hoped to continue contributing to China's aerospace industry.

    Militaries around the world have been racing for years to develop hypersonic weapons. In 2015, the US Air Force announced their goal to develop a hypersonic weapon by 2023. Just this year, Russia claimed to have successfully tested its first hypersonic missiles, and released videos of the weapons in July.

    Hypersonic missiles fly into space after launch, but then come down and fly at high speeds on a flight path similar to an airplane. Their lower trajectory make them more difficult for defense satellites and radars to detect.

    Hypersonic technology can also be used for more benign purposes. Boeing, the world's largest aircraft manufacturer, is conceptualizing a hypersonic passenger plane that could take travelers from New York to London in 120 minutes.

    The Starry Sky-2 was launched into space by a multistage rocket, before separating and beginning its independent flight.

    According to CAAA it performed several turns and other movements during its flight, and landed successfully afterward.

    "The flight tester is controllable, and the scientific data is valid. The complete recovery of the rocket marks the successful completion of the Star-2 flight test, marking the feat of 'the first Chinese waverider',"the statement said.

    "Waverider" is a type of hypersonic aircraft that uses its own shock waves as a lifting surface, thereby improving its lift-to-drag ratio.

    Apart from reaching superfast speeds, CAAA claimed the aircraft also successfully tested an advanced heat-balance thermal protection system.

    The test marks the first time China has officially confirmed its research of waveriders, China Daily reported.

    American anxiety

    The US has been experimenting with unmanned hypersonic aircraft for years, and successfully tested the Boeing X-51 Waverider between 2010 and 2013. It reached a top speed above Mach 5 before crashing into the ocean, as intended.

    However, China's new claim may put additional pressure on the US, as Gen. John Hyten of US Strategic Command acknowledged earlier this year.

    "China has tested hypersonic capabilities. Russia has tested. We have as well. Hypersonic capabilities are a significant challenge," Hyten told CNN in March. "We are going to need a different set of sensors in order to see the hypersonic threats. Our adversaries know that."

    Former Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert Work also warned in June that the US was in danger of being surpassed by China in terms of military technology, according to USNI (US Naval Institute) News.

    Speaking at a forum, Work pointed to Beijing's rising defense spending, which has led to significant progress in electronic warfare, big data, and hypersonic guns.

    "This race is one we have to win," he added.

    CNN's Cat Wang contributed to this report.

    -


    https://img-s-msn-com.akamaized.net/...60&u=t&o=f&l=f



    https://img-s-msn-com.akamaized.net/...=f&x=596&y=220


    https://img-s-msn-com.akamaized.net/...60&u=t&o=f&l=f

  25. #25
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    Instant News Alerts
    ‏ @InstaNewsAlerts
    56m56 minutes ago

    #BREAKING: Top #EU advisor: #European firms that stop doing business with #Iran because of reimposed U.S. sanctions could in turn be sanctioned by the EU.
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  26. #26
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    Amichai Stein
    ‏Verified account @AmichaiStein1
    15m15 minutes ago

    #BREAKING: "North Korea refused to Pompeo demend to cut its nuclear arsenal by 60 to 70 percent" - @voxdotcom
    https://www.vox.com/platform/amp/201...mpression=true
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  27. #27
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...m_campaign=bop

    August 7, 2018, 9:00 AM PDT

    Is Xi Jinping’s Bold China Power Grab Starting to Backfire?

    Months after becoming leader for life, China’s president is seeing cracks around his veneer.

    Peter Martin and Alan Crawford

    A few months ago, Xi Jinping seemed unstoppable. He’d just abolished presidential term limits and announced the most sweeping government overhaul in decades. Having hosted Donald Trump for a successful visit in November, Xi seemed to have prevented a trade war with the U.S. Party propagandists were distributing hagiographic accounts of the newly anointed leader for life.

    Today, China’s president looks like he may have overreached. An economic slowdown, a tanking stock market, and an infant-vaccine scandal are all feeding domestic discontent, while abroad, in Western capitals and financial centers, there’s a growing wariness of Chinese ambitions. And then there is the escalating trade war with the U.S. China initially refused to believe it would happen, but in the past few weeks it’s become the prism through which Xi’s perceived failings are best projected.

    China watchers say studying the workings of the Communist Party is like trying to review a play by watching only the audience’s reaction. By that gauge, signs of upheaval are reverberating around Beijing during what is fast becoming Xi’s summer of discontent: articles from prominent academics and pundits questioning his overall policy direction; an embarrassing rebuke of his top economic adviser by Trump; and a rare public spat over policy between the central bank and Ministry of Finance. All point to a newfound sense of self-doubt creeping into a country whose relentless march to becoming a global superpower had seemed unstoppable. “The trade war has made China more humble,” says Wang Yiwei, a professor of international affairs at Renmin University in Beijing and deputy director of the institution’s “Xi Jinping Thought” center. “We should keep a low profile,” he says, even suggesting that China should rethink how it implements Xi’s flagship “Belt and Road” infrastructure project.

    That’s a remarkable shift in sentiment from March, when Xi boasted of taking China closer to the center of the world stage at the National People’s Congress and secured near-unanimous support for scrapping term limits. Yet that’s also when the whispers began, as some throughout the country, from young officials to old cadres, were shocked at the suddenness of Xi’s power grab.

    In May, entering trade negotiations with the U.S., China projected swagger and self-confidence. Xi dispatched Liu He, his top economic adviser, to the U.S. with the official designation of his “personal envoy.” Liu returned to proclaim victory: There would be no trade war, he said in nationally televised interviews. Then came the shock. Trump imposed $50 billion in tariffs on China. That’s since escalated to a threat to impose a 25 percent tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, prompting the country to warn the U.S. against “blackmailing” it over trade. Meanwhile, a slowing economy makes China more vulnerable to damage from a trade war, which economists predict could cut as much as half a percentage point from growth.

    Chinese academics, economists, and some officials have begun to question whether the leadership could have done more to avoid the confrontation. As carefully worded essays circulate on the WeChat forum, the grumbling has begun to echo around the halls of government. One Finance Ministry official says China made a “major misjudgment” of Trump’s determination to confront the country. Others wonder if China underestimated the durability of American power. “The U.S. will use its hegemonic system, established since World War II from trade, finance, currency, military, and so on, to stop the rise of China,” Ren Zeping, chief economist at China Evergrande Group, wrote in one widely read commentary published on June 5.

    “Rising anxiety has spread into a degree of panic throughout the country”

    As officials and scholars look around the world, they see widespread skepticism of Chinese ambition, particularly in Western capitals whose governments are taking measures to limit China’s ability to buy strategic assets. If this is China’s moment, officials ask, how is it the new superpower seems so alone? “There was a broad-based consensus building that China’s behavior was predatory and needed to be stopped,” says Jude Blanchette, who analyses Chinese politics at Crumpton Group LLC, an international advisory and business development firm in Arlington, Va. “The casting off of term limits was a match on that gasoline and has acted as an accelerant for pushback in the U.S.”

    China has begun to rein in its swagger, starting with the propaganda system. State media were told to downplay the Made in China 2025 industrial initiative to become the world’s foremost power in 10 important industries, including artificial intelligence and pharmaceuticals, a plan the U.S. has identified as a key threat. They were also instructed to avoid talking about China’s greatness (the Chinese title of one recent blockbuster movie translates as “my country is awesome”). The push is to focus instead on how China has helped other nations, according to a person familiar with the instructions.

    Europeans, still deeply skeptical of Chinese industrial policies, are pressing for pledges of greater reciprocal market access to be made more concrete and tougher screening of Chinese investments inside the 28-nation bloc. EU officials say they agree with Trump on the substance of his criticisms, even if tariffs aren’t their preferred weapon. “The EU is open, but it is not naive,” European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker told a July session of business leaders attended by Premier Li Keqiang in Beijing.

    Domestic criticisms have intensified, too. “People across the nation, including the entire bureaucratic elite, feel increasing uncertainty about the direction of the country and a deep sense of personal insecurity,” wrote Xu Zhangrun, a law professor at Tsinghua University in Beijing, in a July 24 essay on the website of the Unirule Institute of Economics, a Chinese think tank. “Rising anxiety has spread into a degree of panic throughout the country.”

    Domestic policy dust-ups, from fresh outrage against failed peer-to-peer lending services to a rushed transition from coal that left millions of villagers without heat, are beginning to look like the inevitable outcome of a system where decision-makers are isolated from facts on the ground. Some began to look back nostalgically to a time when keeping a low profile was seen as a key part of making China great again.


    After the Tiananmen Square massacre of 1989, China began a global charm offensive. The mantra then was to follow former leader Deng Xiaoping’s maxim: China should hide its strength and bide its time. Officials and scholars are starting to talk wistfully of Deng’s guidance. That strategy “allowed China to pursue wealth and power in a way that stayed below the radar,” says Crumpton’s Blanchette. “By casting that off so forcefully, it’s exposed China to many of the global forces it’s now being battered by.”

    While Xi may have lost some of his ability to inspire confidence among his people, he is more capable than ever of inspiring fear. His anticorruption campaign has netted more than 1.5 million officials. And there are no outwardly visible signs of organized opposition to him in the party. Even if everyone is clear that Xi isn’t perfect, there are costs for saying so. “It is too soon to reevaluate Xi’s position,” says David Cohen, a Beijing-based managing editor at consulting firm China Policy. “It is clear that whatever doubts people might have about Xi as a person, there is broad agreement on the biggest areas of policy.”

    Still, there is a sense in which the last month has felt like the end of the beginning for Xi Jinping. “There is suddenly a burst of open discussion and criticism, and it’s very dramatic compared with what we’re used to under Xi,” says Cohen. “People below think there’s more room to push back.”

  28. #28
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    ETA: I've been busy with the "meatworld" for the last couple of days...

    FUNG RED ALERT: Turkish Meltdown as Lira Explodes...Panicked Sellers Spark Contagion
    Started by doctor_fungcool‎, Today 05:42 AM
    http://www.timebomb2000.com/vb/showt...ontagion/page2

    Trump: US to impose sanctions on Turkey over detained pastor
    Started by Shacknasty Shagrat‎, 07-26-2018 12:26 PM
    http://www.timebomb2000.com/vb/showt...etained-pastor

    Main Israel/Hamas/Gaza Thread - 8/9, IDF Troop Leaves Cancelled, Medical Reservists Mobilized
    http://www.timebomb2000.com/vb/showt...ilized/page213

    Israel/Iran 2018 opening act getting closer
    http://www.timebomb2000.com/vb/showt...g-closer/page8

    Tectonic Shift in China: Xi Under Fire as China Realizes It Underestimated U.S. Trade Resolve
    Started by Millwright‎, Today 04:58 AM
    http://www.timebomb2000.com/vb/showt...-Trade-Resolve

    U.S. Judge Authorizes Seizure of Venezuela’s CITGO (the oil company)
    Started by 1911user‎, Yesterday 06:06 PM
    http://www.timebomb2000.com/vb/showt...he-oil-company)
    Last edited by Housecarl; 08-10-2018 at 06:44 PM. Reason: Added thread link

  29. #29
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    https://www.scmp.com/news/china/dipl...20Bird%20Brief

    China, Russia prepare for strategic security talks in Moscow as pressure from United States grows

    Senior Chinese diplomat Yang Jiechi expected to meet President Vladimir Putin during four-day trip

    PUBLISHED : Thursday, 09 August, 2018, 11:01pm
    UPDATED : Thursday, 09 August, 2018, 11:14pm
    Laura Zhou
    https://twitter.com/laurachou
    COMMENTS: 29

    A senior Chinese diplomat will visit Moscow next week amid rising tensions on the global stage, after the United States announced fresh sanctions against Russia, and Beijing and Washington remain locked in a trade war.

    Yang Jiechi, a member of China’s Communist Party Politburo, will be in Russia from Tuesday to Friday to take part in the latest round of the China-Russia strategic security consultation, China’s foreign ministry said on Thursday.

    He will co-chair the meeting with Nikolai Patrushev, secretary of Russia’s Security Council, Xinhua reported.

    Patrushev said earlier that Yang – a former state councillor in charge of China’s foreign policy – was also expected to meet President Vladimir Putin during his four-day trip, Russian news agency TASS reported.

    Yang’s visit comes at a time when both Beijing and Moscow are seeking closer ties as a hedge against US President Donald Trump’s unconventional and aggressive approach on trade and global affairs.

    His trip was announced just hours before Washington said it would impose extensive new sanctions against Moscow, including bans on a wide range of exports, by the end of the month as punishment for the alleged nerve agent attack on former Russian agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Britain in March. Moscow has denied responsibility for the attack.

    The trip also comes at a time when China and the US are embroiled in an escalating trade war. In the latest round of tit-for-tat moves, Beijing on Wednesday unveiled a list of US$16 billion worth of American goods it plans to hit with tariffs after Washington said overnight it would impose 25 per cent tariffs on an equivalent value of Chinese exports.

    Beijing and Moscow have enhanced their cooperation in recent years, both bilaterally and on multilateral platforms, in what some observers have suggested is a united effort to change the global order now dominated by the West.

    After Chinese President Xi Jinping consolidated his leadership position with the removal of a two-term limit on the presidency and Putin won re-election in March, “the basic building blocks for future cooperation on security issues are somewhat more solid”, said Elina Sinkkonen, a senior research fellow at the Finnish Institute of International Affairs.

    “Such language, together with the US sanctions on Russia and trade issues with China certainly influence top level calculations in Moscow and Beijing,” she said.

    Alex Gabuev, a senior fellow at the Carnegie Moscow Centre, said the two neighbours had also seen their interests becoming increasingly overlapped in areas ranging from security in Central Asia to the future of Afghanistan, Africa and North Korea.

    “Both countries want to keep each other in the loop, explain their intentions and cooperate when possible”, he said.

    However, shared concerns about the Trump administration, which named both China and Russia as chief adversaries in its latest national security strategy, were also expected to be high on the agenda during Yang’s Moscow trip.

    “The growth of the Pentagon’s budget, and development of a global missile defence system is a joint challenge, and Russia and China are looking for ways to pool resources to address it,” Gabuev said.

    Li Xing, a Sino-Russian affairs expert at Beijing Normal University, said the two countries might seek to strengthen their ties in the face of rising pressure from the US.

    “The sanctions and trade conflicts could be the external drivers to push deeper cooperation between China and Russia as the two countries have been steadily pushing forward the strategic partnership,” he said.

    Sinkkonen agreed, saying that both sides may seek further cooperation in the future, on joint military production or even cybersecurity, although such plans were only at a very early stage.

    Despite the closer ties, Gabuev said that Russia, with its significantly smaller economy, was unlikely to be able to provide much support to Beijing in its trade war with Washington.

    “China, however, could provide a lot of resources to help some Russian companies withstand the American sanctions,” he said.

    “In economic terms, the Sino-Russian partnership is mutually beneficial, but increasingly asymmetrical, with Beijing holding a much stronger hand.”

    Related:

    Donald Trump is trying to woo Vladimir Putin, but Xi Jinping has already won his heart

    China to send strategic bombers, fighter jets for war games in Russia

    When China, Russia and India come together on a personal level, the world must take notice

    First stop, Russia: why China’s new foreign policy supremo Wang Qishan is looking to Moscow

  30. #30
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    90,980
    "Dot"....

    For links see article source.....
    Posted for fair use.....
    https://www.marinecorpstimes.com/new...n-philippines/

    Pentagon to spend nearly $5M on Marine Corps mission in the Philippines

    By: Todd South  
    1 day ago

    Despite a siege last year that retook a major city in the Philippines and killed an estimated 1,000 ISIS fighters, reducing their ranks to about 200 in the area, Pentagon spending on the military mission there has nearly tripled, according to a recent report.

    And most of that money is being spent on running a fleet of drones to monitor terrorist activities while supporting ground patrols to clear out ongoing contested areas of the country.

    Nearly $5 million is to fund the Marine Corps to “advise, plan and execute missions in support of Philippine counterterror operations,” according to the report.

    Most of those 1,000 ISIS fighters killed in the operation were likely targeted, in part, by Marine Corps special operations forces.

    The Lead Inspector General Report for Operation Inherent Resolve and Operation Pacific Eagle-Philippines covers April to June and details measures, reporting and progress of both operations aimed at defeating the Islamic State.

    The Philippines operation uses mostly U.S. Special Operations Forces to train, advise and assist, especially with ISR assets, as the Philippine military continues to pursue remaining ISIS fighters after having cleared them from the provincial capital city of Marawi, which was seized by ISIS in September and held five months last year.

    The total fiscal year 2018 budget for the Philippine operation was $32.4 million, most of which was used for ISR, according to the quarterly report.

    But the most recent Pentagon budget request, approved by both houses of Congress and awaiting President Donald Trump’s signature, totals $108.2 million, more than a third of which, or $41.8 million, is also for ISR.

    About 250 U.S. troops are involved in the ongoing operation. Of those, 102 are special operations forces troops and another 14 are military contractors, according to the report.

    The same report notes ongoing military operations in the Lanao del Sur and Maguindanao provinces.

    In June, the Indonesian Defense Minister announced plans to deploy soldiers alongside both Philippines and Malaysian forces for ground patrols to root out ISIS and other violent extremist organizations.

    That falls in line with the three countries’ trilateral agreement for maritime patrols and ground combat operations against some of the same entities.

    In January the three nations along with Brunei, Singapore and Thailand launched “Our Eyes” an information sharing program aimed at counter terrorism and radicalism, according to the report.

    Marawi, formerly home to more than 200,000 residents, is the capital of Lanao del Sur.

    A U.S. Agency for International Development report cited by the IG estimated that as many as 127,000 residents may not be able to return to their homes in Marawi for years due to the overall devastation of the city from the extended siege.

    Capt. Kyle Rodgers, led the Special Operations Task Force 511.2 in support of Operation Pacific Eagle-Philippines from January to December 2017. The captain conducted “advise and assist” missions with Joint Task Force Marawi, a 7,000-man unit that facilitated the retaking of the city of Marawi, according to an earlier Marine Corps Times article.

    “His leadership and efforts led to more than 800 enemy killed in action, to include the FBIs most wanted terrorist in the region,” according to his award citation. “And the complete disaggregation of ISIS-P leadership in the southern Philippines.”

    That most wanted terrorist was Isnilon Hapilon, then leader of ISIS-P.

    Intelligence estimates cited in the IG report put the number of ISIS fighters now in the country at about 200 and those are split up in five different jihadist factions, with 30 to 50 each.

    Those who remain have been characterized as “leaderless, disorganized but persistent,” in the report.

    Military officials worry that the remaining pockets could coalesce around a new leader and have recruitment opportunities, especially among the displaced portions of the Muslim population in and around Marawi.

    But some positive signs emerged recently when 27 ISIS-P members surrendered to the President Rodrigo Duterte. The president has said his government will consider amnesty for others who surrender.

    The report notes that Operation Pacific Eagle-Philippines is intended to be a short-term, targeted operation against ISIS and other VEOs.

    The operation limits the U.S. mission to countering internal threats with links to transnational threats such as al Qaeda and ISIS. And to ensure that assets are not use in the country’s drug war or against domestic threats such as rebels and political opposition.

    That may prove tricky, though as the report also notes that drug cartels helped provide support to ISIS, especially in the taking of Marawi and that to be effective the Philippine military would have to go after both.

    Though not broken down in detail in the budget, U.S. military assistance and cooperation with the Philippines is increasing in other ways noted in the report.

    U.S. officials broke ground on their first of five facilities housed within existing Philippine military bases. The facilities will “increase capacity and improve interoperability for combined U.S. and Philippine operations.”

    The first facility, Cesar Basa Air Base in Pampanga province, is a warehouse to preposition equipment for disaster response and humanitarian crises.

    The other four bases that will hold future facilities are spread in the island chain.

    An annual joint exercise “Balikatan” also increased considerably, going from 5,000 troops participating last year between the United States and Philippines. This year 8,000 were in the exercise, 3,000 of them from the United States.

  31. #31
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    Lucas Tomlinson
    ‏Verified account @LucasFoxNews
    2h2 hours ago

    SCOOP: Iran test-fired a short-range ballistic missile last week over the Strait of Hormuz during large-scale naval exercises, Tehran's first test this year: U.S. officials


    ^^^^ I probably missed it being posted about, sorry if late to the game.
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  32. #32
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    posted for fair use and discussion

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-u...-idUSKBN1KV2FG

    World News
    August 10, 2018 / 4:30 PM / Updated an hour ago
    Iran test-fired anti-ship missile during drills last week: U.S. source

    Reuters Staff

    2 Min Read

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Iran test-fired a short-range anti-ship missile in the Strait of Hormuz during naval drills last week that Washington believes were aimed at sending a message as the United States reimposes sanctions on Tehran, a U.S. official said on Friday.

    FILE PHOTO: Iran's national flags are seen on a square in Tehran February 10, 2012, a day before the anniversary of the Islamic Revolution. REUTERS/Morteza Nikoubazl/File Photo

    The official, however, did not suggest that such a missile test was unusual during naval exercises or that it was carried out unsafely, noting it occurred in what could be described as Iranian territorial waters in the Strait.

    Iran’s Revolutionary Guards confirmed on Sunday it had held war games in the Gulf over the past several days, saying they were aimed at “confronting possible threats” by enemies.

    U.S. Army General Joseph Votel, head of the U.S. military’s Central Command, said earlier this week the scope and scale of the exercises were similar to ones Iran had carried out in the past. But the timing of this particular set of exercises was designed to get Washington’s attention.

    “It’s pretty clear to us that they were trying to use that exercise to send a message to us that as we approach this period of the sanctions here, that they had some capabilities,” Votel told reporters at the Pentagon.

    Iran has been furious over U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to pull out of an international agreement on Iran’s nuclear program and re-impose sanctions on Tehran. Senior Iranian officials have warned the country would not easily yield to a renewed U.S. campaign to strangle Iran’s vital oil exports.

    Last month, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei backed President Hassan Rouhani’s suggestion that Iran may block Gulf oil exports if its own exports are stopped.

    Votel said the U.S. military was keenly aware of Iran’s military activities.
    U.S. hits Russia with sanctions for nerve agent attack

    “We are aware of what’s going on, and we remain ready to protect ourselves as we pursue our objectives of freedom of navigation and the freedom of commerce in international waters,” Votel said.

    Reporting by Phil Stewart; Editing by Tom Brown
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  33. #33
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    U.S. Navy
    ‏Verified account @USNavy
    3h3 hours ago

    We will sail, fly and operate wherever international law allows.

    ---------------------
    There is audio at the link of China and a US Pilot; multiple videos at link. China warned the plane 6 times. CNN was on the US Navy plane.

    The below link is what US Navy had attached to the tweet

    I tried to post the article, but there was no way to clean it up to make it legible with all the videos and stuff.

    posted for fair use and discussion

    https://www.cnn.com/2018/08/10/polit...ntl/index.html


    snip showing headline
    'Leave immediately': US Navy plane warned over South China Sea

    By Brad Lendon, Ivan Watson and Ben Westcott, CNN

    Updated 10:20 AM ET, Fri August 10, 2018
    CNN gets rare access on board a US military surveillance flight over the hotly-disputed islands in the South China Sea.
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

  34. #34
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    AL
    Posts
    49,719
    U.S. Indo-Pacific Command
    ‏Verified account @PacificCommand
    15m15 minutes ago


    U.S. Indo-Pacific Command Retweeted U.S. Navy

    The United States will not be "warned off" from lawful operations in international waters and airspace.


    U.S. Indo-Pacific Command added,
    U.S. Navy
    Verified account @USNavy
    We will sail, fly and operate wherever international law allows.
    https://www.cnn.com/2018/08/10/polit...ntl/index.html
    Nana to two "little bits", one not-so-little "little bit" and one 6' college bound "little bit"

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts


NOTICE: Timebomb2000 is an Internet forum for discussion of world events and personal disaster preparation. Membership is by request only. The opinions posted do not necessarily represent those of TB2K Incorporated (the owner of this website), the staff or site host. Responsibility for the content of all posts rests solely with the Member making them. Neither TB2K Inc, the Staff nor the site host shall be liable for any content.

All original member content posted on this forum becomes the property of TB2K Inc. for archival and display purposes on the Timebomb2000 website venue. Said content may be removed or edited at staff discretion. The original authors retain all rights to their material outside of the Timebomb2000.com website venue. Publication of any original material from Timebomb2000.com on other websites or venues without permission from TB2K Inc. or the original author is expressly forbidden.



"Timebomb2000", "TB2K" and "Watching the World Tick Away" are Service Mark℠ TB2K, Inc. All Rights Reserved.