ALERT The Winds of War Blow in Korea and The Far East

northern watch

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Chinese long-range bombers join drills over South China Sea
China says long-range bombers took part in recent aerial drills over the South China Sea amid rising tensions between Washington and Beijing over the strategic waterway

By The Associated Press
30 July 2020

BEIJING -- China said Thursday that long-range bombers were among the aircraft that took part in recent aerial drills over the South China Sea amid rising tensions between Washington and Beijing over the strategic waterway.

The exercises included nighttime takeoffs and landings and simulated long-range attacks, Defense Ministry spokesperson Ren Guoqiang said.

Among the planes were H-6G and H-6K bombers, upgraded versions of planes long in use with the People's Liberation Army Air Force and the People’s Liberation Army Navy Air Force, Ren said.

He said the exercises had been previously scheduled and were aimed at boosting pilot abilities to operate under all natural conditions. It wasn't clear whether live bombs were used.

Ren's statement appeared to distance the drills from recent accusations exchanged between the sides over China's claim to virtually all of the South China Sea, which it has buttressed in recent years by building man-made islands equipped with runways.

The U.S. this month for the first time rejected China’s claims outright, prompting Beijing to accuse it of seeking to create discord between China and its neighbors.

Five other governments also exercise claims in the South China Sea, through which around $5 trillion in trade is transported annually.

Previously, U.S. policy had been to insist that maritime disputes between China and its smaller neighbors be resolved peacefully through U.N.-backed arbitration.

But in a statement, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the U.S. now regards virtually all Chinese maritime claims outside its internationally recognized waters to be illegitimate. The shift does not involve disputes over land features that are above sea level, which are considered to be “territorial” in nature.

“The world will not allow Beijing to treat the South China Sea as its maritime empire,” Pompeo said.

Although the U.S. will officially continue to remain neutral in the territorial disputes, the announcement means the administration is in effect siding with governments which oppose Chinese assertions of sovereignty over maritime areas surrounding contested islands, reefs and shoals.

In other comments Thursday, Ren criticized stepped-up military cooperation between the U.S. and Taiwan, the self-governing island democracy that China claims as its territory, to be brought under its control by force if necessary.

Washington and Taipei have no formal diplomatic ties but the U.S. is the island's key provider of defensive arms and is legally obligated to treat threats to the island as matters of grave concern.

“The U.S. must realize that China is destined to unify (with Taiwan), and China is destined to realize its great rejuvenation,"" Ren said.



passin' thru
Co-opting the Narrative: How Changing Women’s Roles Provide Legitimacy to Kim Jong Un
By: Darcie Draudt

On July 30, KCNA reaffirmed the country’s commitment to gender equality with a short notice on the 74th anniversary of the country’s Law on Sex Equality. According to Kim Il Sung, the women of the DPRK pushed “one of the two wheels of the revolutionary chariot” and are “flowers of the era for the prosperity of the country.”

In fact, how the North Korean state treats women’s roles can give us insights into regime capacity and illuminate potential cracks in the Supreme Leader’s domestic legitimacy. Official representations of gender roles show how much the regime can co-opt social changes and use them to support its legitimacy. When it comes to North Korean state-society relations more generally—like in music and media, technology and consumer trends—Kim Jong Un, like his father, has broadly been able to follow a three-step process taken from a successful dictator’s playbook: 1) identify on-the-ground changes perceived to threaten control and legitimacy, 2) stamp out or co-opt the narrative of those changes, and 3) use that narrative for his own political legitimacy.

Role of Women

As in most socialist ideologies, North Korea’s political ideology criticizes the burden of unpaid domestic labor and seeks to move women to the public workforce. North Korea took early steps to ensure women’s political and economic participation to build the nation. For example, to ease domestic burdens on women, the state established public childcare and “take out” food distribution centers as early as the 1960s. Service and political discussion groups specifically for women increased participation in social and political life outside the home. These steps led the North Korean state to claim the country is a woman’s paradise, where women have already been liberated from patriarchal feudalism.

But as we know, reality doesn’t always match rhetoric. Deeply rooted cultural practices often supersede these revolutionary prescriptions.[1] When it comes to the role of women in North Korean culture, the key is looking at how the family unit as an institution serves national development. Whether it’s a result of embedded Confucian mores or not, in Korean society the family unit is the basis for economic and social activity. In these traditional family institutions, the man takes care of all business outside the home and the woman takes care of all business inside the home.

Like his father, KCNA reports that Kim Jong Il respected women who served in the military as soldiers as well as officers’ wives and elevated their role as revolutionaries and cooks on the same footing. This family unit becomes a handy mechanism for the regime, because it’s already a seemingly natural, even primordial way of organizing society; in effect, the regime’s endurance is bolstered by its deep roots in an already conservative society.

Women’s roles can tell us a lot about the extent of control in totalitarian regimes, which by definition restrict individuals or groups from opposing the state and exercise immense control over public and private life. The North Korean regime’s “toolbox” ensures control both externally, by manipulating foreign governments, as well as internally, by restrictive social policies and manipulating ideas and information.[2] Social roles, including women’s roles, can be described on three levels:

  • Policies that protect or prohibit certain political or civil rights, dole out social benefits like welfare provisions on the basis of gender or family position, or shape individual economic advancement;
  • Practices, like giving preference to male applicants for work or female participation in neighborhood watch groups; and
  • Representation, or the power potential of an individual; in societies with low, bullet-proof glass ceilings, a woman’s influence on policymaking will be limited.

Just as there are elite politics and everyday politics in North Korea, there are two corresponding types of gender politics at play. The connection between grassroots changes and elite representations of womanhood suggests again how the regime is able to co-opt new social trends in the service of political legitimation and political and economic development.

Markets and Women’s Roles

When it comes to everyday gender politics, the most significant shift occurred during the Great Famine in the 1990s. At the time, state-owned enterprises (SOEs) couldn’t afford to hire the entire workforce and women were the first to be let go. In effect, the state recast women as unpaid domestics as part of the family unit, and created policies and practices that upheld women’s roles as mothers and wives—rather than workers in social, political and economic life.

But there was another countervailing trend. Men, if they were still employed, couldn’t bring home enough to support their family on a paltry government paycheck. Some women then turned to selling in black markets, becoming the breadwinners in these families. The makeshift market stalls were illegal, and women could face arrest or punishment, but the state largely turned a blind eye to these illicit market activities during the period of mass starvation.

At the same time, the government also criticized the work of these female traders as unnecessary or lower-class. Men at this time were limited to work at SOEs and were banned from working in markets unless a household dependent.[3] But as the economy picked up and the state rebuilt its capacity, the state saw an opportunity to introduce its own markets, made individual market activities illegal, and pushed out the local female entrepreneurs. In fact, in 2007, the government banned market trade for women under the age of 50. Women were once again relegated to the home.

In other words, the market activities that bubbled up from below were co-opted by the state and the economic benefits garnered from them were used to legitimate the regime. Women were empowered when convenient (whether intentional or not), but the official narrative and policy never institutionalized the gains made during this period. Low- and mid-level practices of political and economic empowerment may be possible, but policies that permit bottom-up social change are readily leveraged to promote regime stability.

Co-Opting the Narrative

(Source: Reuters)
Over the years, the state co-opted the social effects of marketization while reaping its economic benefits. To get a full picture of the role of women in the DPRK, we can compare policy and official representation of everyday women’s empowerment with the female figureheads Kim Jong Un surrounds himself with. In North Korea today, the “new Korean women” are represented by two idealized images: Kim Yo Jong, Kim Jong Un’s much talked-about sister, and Ri Sol Ju, his wife. These women fill different roles: one is the new top female political figure and the other the highest female ceremonial figure. Obviously, both are directly related to the Supreme Leader—one by blood and the other by marriage. But in the North Korean context, the importance of those family connections is actually much deeper: because of the primacy of the family unit in social, political and economic life in North Korea, the young Kim Jong Un benefited from the image of a strong family to uphold his legitimacy.

Kim Yo Jong serves as an essential advisor with her own military and political clout, but she doesn’t threaten Kim Jong Un’s claim to power, like a brother would. Her apparently strong influence is also an important signal in terms of domestic power consolidation. Kim Jong Un’s aunt, Kim Kyong Hui, was the most powerful woman in the country when Kim Jong Un took leadership. But she’s been virtually sidelined from the public eye and, it seems, political decision-making. Kim Jong Un has literally replaced the old guard with the new, his father’s sister with his own.

Ri Sol Ju fills an important role for everyday gender politics and crafting the new woman ideal in North Korea today. Ri wears modern shift dresses like any world leader’s wife does and carries luxury handbags from the West. Though easy to brush aside Ri’s image as merely cosmetic change, this image of the mother of the nation, of wife to the Supreme Leader, is carefully chosen and it matters to the society especially in a country where leadership is based around a charismatic personality.

By portraying his wife as the new modern mother of the nation, Kim Jong Un can get ahead of consumerism trends that started illegally during the Great Famine period. Ri helps the leadership show North Korean women, especially in elite circles, an official story about how to live. Many upper class North Korean women have acquired relatively more cosmopolitan tastes. New styles of female consumption are not counter to the regime, but rather co-opted by it. And because Kim Jong Un makes these goods more available—at least to the elite classes—it legitimizes his claims at being able to modernize the nation.

Social Roles and Legitimacy

Authoritarian regimes are resilient not only when they can withstand outside pressures, but also respond to any grassroots or popular changes in social roles that may spur political mobilization. With nearly a decade of rule under his belt, Kim Jong Un has apparently shored up control over acceptable social change. The official representations of his sister and wife are his leadership’s answer to remedying the social breakdown that occurred under his father, and he seems to have effectively used that dictator’s three-step playbook. When it comes to gender roles, his leadership has been able to not only tamp down unacceptable changes to gender roles and the family unit structure arising from marketization, but also create its own narrative to legitimize economic advancement and cultural resiliency.

  1. [1]
    Kyungja Jung and Bronwen Dalton, “Rhetoric versus Reality for the Women of North Korea,” Asian Survey 46, no. 5 (2006): 741-760.
  2. [2]
    Daniel Byman and Jennifer Lind, “Pyongyang’s Survival Strategy: Tools of Authoritarian Control in North Korea,” International Security 35, no. 1 (2010): 44-74.
  3. [3]
    Andrei Lankov, The Real North Korea: Life and Politics In the Failed Stalinist Utopia (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013).
posted for fair use


passin' thru
Peter Wood

New Map for August 1st: The PLA Navy Marine Corps

I should note that these are not all fully fledged brigades. The newer brigades are frankly a kludge of transferred coastal defense units, motorized and other odds and ends..

..which is to be expected. But a core of officers from the 1st and 2nd Brigades seem to have been transferred to help them get up and running. The aviation brigade in particular is going to need aircraft (which the Navy itself probably wants to hold on to, or get in line behind..
PLA Ground Force Aviation units for Z-10s/-19s). Haven't run the numbers but that is my best guess. Longer term it is possible that additional brigades could be set up for logistics functions. Point being: this is a work in progress, not a fully-formed expeditionary force


passin' thru
You don't say. Chinese Communist Party reclassifies body of water in the South China Sea between Hainan and Paracels Islands from "offshore" to "coastal," with an aim "to bring as much of the disputed waterway under its control as possible."
South China Sea: Beijing reclassifies navigation area to increase control, experts say
  • Change to regulation drawn up in 1974 indicative of Beijing’s drive to bring as much of the disputed waterway under its control as possible
  • Country is facing growing criticism on the world stage over its claims to almost all of the South China Sea
Kristin Huang

Kristin Huang
Published: 11:00pm, 31 Jul, 2020
Updated: 3:40am, 1 Aug, 2020

Why you can trust SCMP


Beijing’s redefined navigational area encompasses parts of the Paracel Islands in the South China Sea. Photo: AFP

Beijing’s redefined navigational area encompasses parts of the Paracel Islands in the South China Sea. Photo: AFP
China has changed the wording of a shipping regulation to identify a stretch of water between Hainan province and the Paracels Islands in the
South China Sea
as a “coastal” rather than “offshore” navigation area.
Observers said the move was indicative of Beijing’s drive to bring as much of the disputed waterway under its control as possible.
The word change appeared in an amended version of a regulation – drawn up in 1974 – regarding technical rules for the statutory testing of seagoing vessels. It will take effect on Saturday.
The regulation, titled “Technical Rules for the Statutory Testing of Seagoing Vessels on Domestic Voyages” establishes the “Hainan-Xisha Navigation Area”, which is bound by two points on Hainan island – China’s most southerly province – and three in the Paracels, or Xisha as they are known in Mandarin.
Beijing is facing growing criticism on the world stage over its territorial claims in the South China Sea. Photo: Reuters

Beijing is facing growing criticism on the world stage over its territorial claims in the South China Sea. Photo: Reuters
Zhang Jie, an expert on the South China Sea at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said the move might have been designed to strengthen the administration of Paracels using domestic laws.

“Even if this is not directly aimed at enhancing control, it has that effect,” he said.

Collin Koh, a research fellow at the S Rajaratnam School of International Studies at Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University, agreed.
SCMP Global Impact Newsletter
Uncover the most important stories from China that affect the world

By registering, you agree to our T&C and Privacy Policy
“This might not come as a surprise, especially after Beijing announced the creation of administrative districts for the Paracels and Spratlys,” he said.

China is facing growing criticism on the world stage over its claims to almost all of the South China Sea.

Earlier this month, the United States and Australia declared those claims illegal, saying they were inconsistent with international law.
In a diplomatic note to the United Nations on Wednesday, Malaysia rebuked China
for claiming Kuala Lumpur had no right to seek the establishment of its continental shelf in the northern part of the South China Sea.

The pressure from the international community comes as Beijing has sought to use domestic law to put its claims to the disputed waters into context and boost its influence in the region.
Since 2010, China has established seven new maritime courts, one of which was set up in the Hainan city of Sansha.

In 2013, Beijing centralised several maritime agencies under the new Chinese Coast Guard, and in 2017, the Supreme People’s Court announced that its jurisdiction extended to all areas under China’s “sovereign control”, including “jurisdictional seas”.

posted for fair use
video at source


passin' thru
Indo-Pacific News


Sharing my chart of the #Chinese Navy vs the #QUAD countries (#US Pacific Fleet + #Japanese Navy + #IndianNavy + #Australian Navy) Small / Obsolete ships / SSBNs / LPDs are not included #China #PLAN #USA
#USNavy #FreeandopenIndoPacific

Note 1: The chart includes the US Pacific fleet, not the whole US Navy. Note 2: Only LHD & LHA amphibious ships are included, not LPDs, etc Note 3: Indian Navy SSK submarine breakdown: 2 Calvari, 8 Kilo, 4 Shishumar classes.


passin' thru
Global: MilitaryInfo


According to a confidential U.N. report, North Korea is continuing to develop its nuclear weapons program and likely developed miniaturized nuclear devices to fit into the warheads of its ballistic missiles.
Could also mean a miniturized warhead could be sold to a terrorist organization which is a game changer. If NK has sold weapons before, would they be willing to sell a mini nuke? Not something we can risk.

..if used the nuke matl signature would be determined & NK may be hit with a decapitation plan or even tactical nukes on NK front line. Tactical nukes can be carried on F15s & Stealth, they can destroy both tunnels & NK artillery lines. No good scenario if this happens 2020sux!

Não precisa de relatório confidencial , pois todo o mundo já sabe disso !


passin' thru
Duterte bans Philippines from joining naval exercises in South China Sea

Patricia Lourdes Viray(
August 4, 2020 - 9:58am

In this May 5, 2019 photo, the US Navy guided-missile destroyer USS William P. Lawrence (DDG 110), upper left, transits international waters of the South China Sea with the Indian navy destroyer INS Kolkata (D 63) and tanker INS Shakti (A 57); the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force helicopter carrier JS Izumo (DDH 183) and destroyer JS Murasame (DD 101); and the Republic of the Philippines navy patrol ship BRP Andres Bonifacio (PS 17).
US Navy/Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force/Released

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines will no longer be participating in joint maritime exercises in the South China Sea with other countries, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said Monday.

According to Lorenzana, President Rodrigo Duterte issued this directive to reduce tension in the contested waterway.
Related Stories
Raising stakes, US brands China claims in South China Sea illegal
Australia backs US, affirms Philippines' South China Sea arbitral win

"President Rodrigo Duterte has a standing order to us, to me, that we should not involve ourselves in naval exercises in the South China Sea except our national waters, the 12 mile distance from our shores," Lorenzana said at an online press briefing.

Just last month, the United States declared that it would treat China's pursuit of resources in the South China Sea as illegal. Beijing rejected this, claiming that the accusation was "unjustified."

The US, along with allies such as Australia, has been recently conducting joint maritime exercises in the South China Sea following its latest policy on the maritime disputes.

"If one country’s action is considered as belligerent, another tension will normally rise, so I hope that all the parties in this exercise will have, will work on their actions there, to exercise prudence and carefulness so that there will be no miscalculations that could further increase the tension," the defense chief said.

Duterte: I am 'inutil'
In his penultimate State of the Nation Address last week, Duterte admitted that he is "useless" on the West Philippine Sea issue as China has "possession" of the area. The West Philippine Sea is the portion of the South China Sea which is within Philippine exclusive economic zone.

The president, once again, insisted that asserting the Philippines' sovereign rights over the West Philippine Sea would entail going to war with China.

"China is claiming it, we are claiming it. China has the arms. We do not have it. So, it's simple as that," Duterte said.

Instead of supposedly going to war, Duterte said the issue should be treated "with a diplomatic endeavor."

"They (China) are in possession of the property, so what we can do? We have to go to war and I cannot afford it. Maybe some president can but we cannot. Inutil ako d'yan," the president said.

This, despite the Philippines' July 2016 arbitral win that invalidated China's historic nine-dash line claim over the South China Sea. Beijing continues reject the ruling while Manila, under the Duterte administration, refuses to invoke the award.

Naval powers in West Philippine Sea
In response to Duterte's remarks, retired Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio said the president should not say that China is in possession of the Philippines' exclusive economic zone in the West Philippine Sea because this is not the case.

"China does not possess Philippine EEZ which is beyond the 12-nautical mile territorial seas of disputed islands or high-tide geologic features," Carpio said in a statement.

Carpio, part of the Philippine delegation in the South China Sea arbitration, stressed that naval power like the US, the UK, France, Australia, Japan and Canada regularly sail in the West Philippine Sea, proving that Beijing is not in possession of the area.

He also pointed out that Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia are asserting their sovereign rights to their maritime zones against China's claims without going to war.

"A country does not need to go to war to assert its sovereign rights. There are lawful and peaceful means of asserting sovereign rights," Carpio earlier said.

posted for fair use


passin' thru
Global: MilitaryInfo


According to a confidential U.N. report, North Korea is continuing to develop its nuclear weapons program and likely developed miniaturized nuclear devices to fit into the warheads of its ballistic missiles.
Could also mean a miniturized warhead could be sold to a terrorist organization which is a game changer. If NK has sold weapons before, would they be willing to sell a mini nuke? Not something we can risk.

..if used the nuke matl signature would be determined & NK may be hit with a decapitation plan or even tactical nukes on NK front line. Tactical nukes can be carried on F15s & Stealth, they can destroy both tunnels & NK artillery lines. No good scenario if this happens 2020sux!

Não precisa de relatório confidencial , pois todo o mundo já sabe disso !

World News
August 3, 2020 / 5:15 PM / Updated 43 minutes ago
North Korea has 'probably' developed nuclear devices to fit ballistic missiles, U.N. report says

Michelle Nichols
4 Min Read

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - North Korea is pressing on with its nuclear weapons program and several countries believe it has “probably developed miniaturized nuclear devices to fit into the warheads of its ballistic missiles,” according to a confidential U.N. report.

The report by an independent panel of experts monitoring U.N. sanctions said the countries, which it did not identify, believed North Korea’s past six nuclear tests had likely helped it develop miniaturized nuclear devices. Pyongyang has not conducted a nuclear test since September 2017.
The interim report, seen by Reuters, was submitted to the 15-member U.N. Security Council North Korea sanctions committee on Monday.
“The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is continuing its nuclear program, including the production of highly enriched uranium and construction of an experimental light water reactor. A Member State assessed that the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is continuing production of nuclear weapons,” the report said.

North Korea is formally known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK). North Korea’s mission to the United Nations in New York did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the U.N. report.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said last week there would be no more war as the country’s nuclear weapons guarantee its safety and future despite unabated outside pressure and military threats.
The U.N. report said one country, which it did not identify, assessed that North Korea “may seek to further develop miniaturisation in order to allow incorporation of technological improvements such as penetration aid packages or, potentially, to develop multiple warhead systems.”

North Korea has been subjected to U.N. sanctions since 2006 over its nuclear and ballistic missile programs. While the Security Council has steadily strengthened sanctions in a bid to cut off funding for those programs.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump have met three times since 2018, but failed to make progress on U.S. calls for Pyongyang to give up its nuclear weapons and North Korea’s demands for an end to sanctions.
In May 2018 North Korea followed through on a pledge to blow up tunnels at its main nuclear test site, Punggye-ri, which Pyongyang said was proof of its commitment to end nuclear testing. But they did not allow experts to witness the dismantlement of the site.
The U.N. report said that as only tunnel entrances were known to have been destroyed and there is no indication of a comprehensive demolition, one country had assessed that North Korea could rebuild and reinstall within three months the infrastructure needed to support a nuclear test.
The U.N. experts said North Korea is violating sanctions, including “through illicit maritime exports of coal, though it suspended these temporarily between late January and early March 2020” due to the coronavirus pandemic.

FILE PHOTO: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un speaks at an event to confer "Paektusan" commemorative pistols to leading commanding officers of the armed forces on the 67th anniversary of the "Day of Victory in the Great Fatherland Liberation War", which marks the signing of the Korean War armistice, in this undated photo released on July 27, 2020 by North Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang. KCNA via REUTERS
Last year the U.N. experts said North Korea has generated an estimated $2 billion using widespread and sophisticated cyberattacks to steal from banks and cryptocurrency exchanges.

“The Panel continues to assess that virtual asset service providers and virtual assets will continue to remain lucrative targets for the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to generate revenue, as well as mining cryptocurrencies,” the latest report said.

Reporting by Michelle Nichols; Editing by Sandra Maler and Tom Brown
Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
posted for fair use

northern watch

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Australian leader says US-China war no longer inconceivable

Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison says his government holds a less dramatic view of U.S.-China strategic tensions than a predecessor who warned of a potential “hot war” before U.S. presidential elections in November

By ROD McGUIRK Associated Press
5 August 2020

CANBERRA, Australia -- Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Wednesday his government held a less dramatic view of U.S.-China strategic tensions than a predecessor who warned of a potential “hot war” before U.S. presidential elections in November.

Former prime minister and China scholar Kevin Rudd wrote in the Foreign Affairs journal this week that the risk of armed conflict between the United States and China in the next three months was “especially high.”

Morrison said his administration had expressed similar views in a defense policy update last month when he announced 270 billion Australian dollars ($190 billion) in new warfare capability spending, including longer-range missiles.

“Our defense update expresses it differently and certainly not as dramatically as Kevin,” Morrison told the Aspen Security Forum in an online address from the Australian capital Canberra.

“But in our own defense update, we’ve acknowledged that what was previously inconceivable and not considered even possible or likely in terms of those types of outcomes is not considered in those contexts anymore,” he added.

Morrison disagreed with many in Washington that the United States was in a new Cold War with China. Morrison said the “circumstances are quite different.”

He had no answers for how China’s push for power in the South China Sea, on the Indian border and in Hong Kong should be handled.

“I’m an optimist, Australians are indefatigable optimists about these things,” Morrison said.

“We have to take an optimistic attitude but not an unrealistic or naïve attitude.

We’ve got to set out and wed ourselves to the objectives here and that is not the suppression or containment of any one state, it’s about the productive and strategic balance that can be achieved,” he added.

Australia and the Unites States share a bilateral security treaty as well as an alliance with India and Japan through the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, which China views with distrust.

Australia’s relations with China, its most important trading partner, has plumbed new lows in part because of Australian calls for an independent investigation into the origins of and responses to the coronavirus.

Morrison said he had not met Chinese President Xi Jinping since the pair spoke on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in Japan in June last year. Australia has extended an open invitation for further talks.

“I don’t get hung up on these things, to be honest,” Morrison said. “What matters is that the trading relationship, the economic relationship is able to be pursued. That is occurring. It has its frustrations from time to time.”


Life = Synergy of Spirit, Air, Water, Earth, Fire
A fire in port does not equate to battle damage at sea. The Chinese have never had experience in doing damage contol while under fire. The US Navy and allies practice under real world condtions. That mini flat deck won't stand a chance. If her aircraft get aloft, and are not shot down, those aviators best know how to swim- long time, long way...

Bright Blessings,

OldArcher, GNIW