Will the Trump Administration Use India to Instigate Headaches and Problems for China?

 

India and China are in a little dispute over border territory according to a recent Reuters report. The timing is rather interesting. Is it possible that the Trump administration is planning to use India as a point of aggravation and irritation for China? It appears that right now Washington and New Delhi have tepid if not warm relations as compared to Beijing and Washington. Could that relationship get hotter if Washington incentivizes India to produce “nuff ton a headaches and problems” for China?

And how could that result in Policy changes concerning North Korea, if at all? I mean, India is not “on the peninsula” so to speak as far as I understand it from looking at the map. So it has nothing at all to do with the geopolitics involving North Korea and its neighbors in the Asia Pacific.

But its proximity to China and the fact that they share a border could make India very useful for the Americans – if the US President can manage not to antagonize the India leaders.

But what could India do to China that would make China more amenable to helping out the West with regard to Pyongyang? Or is China just too powerful for India to handle? I mean, does India have nukes?

China Flexes Its Foreign Policy Muscles in Venezuela and the Philippines

China is on the prowl to expand its influence and carve out new friendships. In Venezuela, where civil unrest erupted following food shortages and hyper inflation, Chinese citizens and business owners in Venezuela were being targeted by looters and protesters. They appealed to their government through the Chinese embassy and the government has instructed the Venezuelan regime to ascertain that no harm comes to Chinese citizens during the revolts.

In the Philippines, the Chinese government has reportedly gifted strongman Duterte $14 million in arms and boats – no strings attached – to help Duterte fight an virulent drug crisis in his country. In exchange, Duterte’s regime will pull back a case the country lanced against China at the Hague concerning China’s shenanigans in the South China sea.

Read more here.

China Moves to Broaden its “Soft Power” Globally With Creation of China Global TV Network (CGTN)

President Xi Jinping of China realizes that his country needs to do a better job with “influence” in the global community. In spite of being the second richest country in the world, China lacks the influence of many lesser states such as Russia, France and UK. One reason might be that the country and its leaders have not done a good enough job of spreading China’s voice and showcasing its strengths and contributions to the world community. This is all probably going to change with the creation of CGTN, a rebranded version of CCTV that has been given the presidential stamp of approval;

The broadcaster published a congratulatory letter from President Xi Jinping on Saturday urging the newly launched CGTN to “tell China’s story well, spread China’s voice well, let the world know a three-dimensional, colorful China, and showcase China’s role as a builder of world peace.”

The government has long grumbled about the Western news media’s hold on international discourse and has spent vast sums in recent years to enhance its own influence and shape global opinion, with CCTV as one of its spearheads. The broadcaster has channels in English, Arabic, French, Spanish and Russian, and production centers in Washington and Nairobi.

This will hardly be enough to change China’s reputation as not such an important global player but at least it is a start. For sure the country will have to do a better job of getting its hands dirty with some of the numerous global problems and crisis from which it often keeps its distance. They will have to commit greater resources and capital – military, economic and humanitarian in order to tellement rebrand their image. But certainly the TV network is a good place to commence.

Is China a “Racist” State?

Around the world, including in Asia, Donald Trump is often described as a “racist” and his election into power has many people worried that America will become more racist than at any other time in its history. Is this a “fair” assessment especially when one considers the  following excerpt  from a recent interview by the Atlantic of former US secretary of State, Henry Kissinger:

President Xi, for his part, has put forward two objectives for China. The first is “Asia for the Asians.” The second is an effort to turn adversaries into partners. In my opinion, we must try to make this second framework the dominant theme of U.S.–China relations. The Chinese view the world very differently than we do. We have to combine our own diplomatic and military capabilities to respond to this reality. But is that possible in the current world, with its weapons of mass destruction and cyber capabilities?

It is the first objective “Asia for Asians” that begs the question posed in the title of this post. Granted, fundamentally, if President Xi’s objective was “Asia for Africans” or “Asia for Europeans” or “Asia for Americans” it would have been especially bizarre. But in the grand scheme of the current world in which these objectives are allegedly being pursued, is it farfetched to wonder if it at least sounds a little bit “racist” to have such a stated goal? Is it too isolationist in a world where internationalism and globalism are norms and where China’s very existence depends on a diverse patchwork of people from all corners of the globe?

Moreover, what if Trump said “America for Americans”? Or what if a European leader said “Europe for Europeans”? Or an African leader says “Africa for Africans”? Would these statements be viewed as “racist”?

Or is this issue more nuanced than the mere utterance of these words? Is this objective on the part of the Chinese influenced by China’s historical past, for instance? For example, the 100 years of European occupation of China? That is, is Xi being racist? Or is he trying to say “what is yours is yours and what is ours is ours”?

Indeed, Europe has no need to declare that Europe is for Europeans because everybody already knows that. Europe has never been occupied or colonized in the way that other countries and continents have. Out of the starting block, all actors know the deal: Europe is for Europeans. This goes perhaps even further back than the ancient Greeks and Romans.  Europe calls the shots. Europe decides  who is allowed to come in and under what conditions. Europe has historically had all the power – even over the great and mighty United States.

China’s power is new and rising. It is not yet fully established and fully entrenched. Especially when you have American, British and other western powers flying their planes and drones over the South China Sea – and in the interim trying to dictate to China about how they should run their country and region.

How many Chinese planes and drones are flying over European and American seas to assert any perceived rights under the auspices of international law? Probably zero. One might then point out that there are no territorial disputes in European and American seas as exists in the South and East China seas. Yes. But even if there had been, one can rest assured there still would be no Chinese planes flying over Britain or America or France or any of their allies. To the Chinese, it appears (perception is not necessarily reality) that Europe is for Europeans and America is for Americans. China would not dare, it seems, to try to impose its will on its European and American contemporaries.

So is it racist for Xi Jinping to have this “Asia for Asians” objective? Yes and no. On the one hand, the historical context is consequential and China has to draw its line. On the other hand, any country (or continent for that matter) in the twenty-first century (or region for that matter) whose “racial” make up is almost 100 percent genetically congruent, and where there are no active policies to open the country or countries to immigration from countries that share racial differences – such that there is clear and discernible “racial diversity” within its borders in numbers that are more than de minimis  -(and where, possibly, one could argue that there are active policies that discourage new immigrants from diverse groups) could probably be justifiable accused of being at least a little bit “racist.” So it is not just a question even of “Is China racist” it could very well be a question if Asia as a region, is racist.

And in the twenty-first century, yes, this could be a little bit of a problem.

If China wants to have the type of global influence it is obviously courting in its 100 year goal, the leaders of that country will have to be open-minded enough to think about this issue. Because at least, in Europe, and certainly in America, people who are not genetically “Asian” are let in.

Trump’s Appointment of Peter Navarro to Head the White House Trade Council Has Beijing Seeing Orange

Beijing has rung its orange alert following President Elect Trump’s selection of economist Peter Navarro to head the White House Trade Council. They decry the fact that the president elect is “picking individuals who have a bias against China'” to head important foreign policy positions such as head of the White House Trade Council. Apparently this is a recently created position.  But is not clear that the president elect is under an obligation to pick members for his cabinet who the Chinese government and the Chinese people approve of. Likewise, it is unclear that any individual in the American government would have any such say or leverage with respect to who is chosen to play lead roles in the Chinese government.

Trump, who is unlikely to be swayed by threats and angst from Beijing, has described the China issue in very harsh terms. He said on the campaign trail that China has “raped” the United States and he has promised to rectify the situation by imposing heavy tariffs on Chinese products and imports. Hence, perhaps his selection of a hardliner like Navarro for the job. Is Navarro anti-China? This is not clear but he is a professor and economists and he has been very critical of the Chinese regime.  More specifically, he is said to be highly critical of “environmental issues relating to Chinese imports as well as China’s theft of US intellectual property.”

According to a recent Reuters report, Chinese media as well as government officials have warned that China is prepared and is not afraid of a “showdown” with the United States.

This could mean that a trade war is all but inevitable. Who will win? This is not clear at this time. What is crystal clear is that the games have definitely begun.

Donald Trump May Get More Than a “Bloody Nose” From China. He literally Could Be On the Cusp of a New Peloponnesian War

China and America are still feuding over a drone that was dispatched in international waters in the South China Sea by the US Navy and that was subsequently seized by Chinese sailors. President elect Donald Trump, who has been talking tough against China and the plans he has in store for the regime, took to Twitter to voice his objections, calling the act “unpresidented.”

Is it really? These shenanigans seem as old as time itself. The entire saga is redolent of Thucydides’ account of the Peloponnesian War and the ancient Greeks from thousands of years ago – circa 424 B.C. There is nothing “unprecedented” about the type of conflict that is brewing between the United States and China. It does not take a rocket scientist to figure out where this is heading and how it will end.

Who is the modern day Sparta? And which one is modern day Athens? It is hard to say but the phenomena at play today were the same in the Peloponnese “democracy and imperialism, the class struggle, the revolutionary spirit, the technique of aggression, cynical real-politik, and the importance of sea-power…jealousy…”

Corinth, Corfu, Athens, Sparta, America, China, Japan, Philippines, Taiwan…the South China Sea…

What is the underlying emotion that rules all of the above? Fear. Mounting fear. The good news is that it looks like the Chinese have agreed to return the device to America and the matter may have been resolved before serious conflict took hold over something so trivial but it should be noted that the ceasefire did not come before several people with knowledge of the matter have voiced their opinions. One of those people is retired Chinese admiral Yang Yi, who, according to New York Times report had this to say:

“If Trump and the American government dare to take actions to challenge the bottom line of China’s policy and core interests,” he said, “we must drop any expectations about him and give him a bloody nose.”

Tough talk by any standard and scary too, when one considers that tensions have been mounting lately between the two superpowers, and between the superpowers and neighbouring countries in the South China Sea and the Korean Peninsula.

A Yale Historian named Donald Kagan recounted the story of the Peloponnesian War as written by Thucydides – in 2003. According to the Chicago Tribune at that time:

The basis of Kagan’s account is, of course, Thucydides — at least up to the point, nearly seven years before the war ended, where his account leaves off in midsentence. Thus, to some extent, Kagan is writing as Thucydides might have, had he known the outcome of the war when he wrote.

That does not mean Kagan always agrees with Thucydides. Following the historian’s account of the Athenian defeat in Sicily, Kagan notes that most historians agree with Thucydides in blaming the continuation of the Sicilian campaign “on the greed, ignorance, and foolishness of the direct Athenian democracy.” But, Kagan argues, the “constancy and determination to carry through what they had begun, in spite of setbacks and disappointments,” shows just the opposite.

Suggesting the enduring value of a study of the Peloponnesian War, Kagan writes that the Athenian error was “one common to powerful states, regardless of their constitutions, when they are unexpectedly thwarted by an opponent they anticipated would be weak and easily defeated.”

If, god forbid, the US and China continue this trajectory toward conflict over the next four years of Mr Trump’s presidency, is it even conceivable that China could defeat America? Clearly, in the mind of Mr Trump, the answer is a resounding “no.” he sees the Chinese as ipso facto weaker than the Americans and more easily defeated. If history is any teacher, Mr Trump could be making a sizable mistake – one that could lead to the destruction of the United States. On his watch, in four short years, America could become, or get well on its way to becoming, the modern day Athens. But don’t worry. Even if China becomes the last superpower standing, this status will not last very long.

In the introduction to Sir Richard Livingstone’s Thucydides The History of the Peloponnesian War, the author was prescient:

In any case, the Athenian Empire, short-lived as it was, lasted longer than the hegemony of the oligarchic states of Sparta and Thebes.

But there is no analogy between England and America with their mixture of good intentions and inertia and Athens, ruined by an energy which overtook tasks beyond its strength.

She has none of the faults we associate with democracy.

Her decisions were quick – perhaps too quick. She did not sacrifice the safety of the state to social services. She was active and aggressive.

The Conservatives were the peace party, and the masses were for a forward policy.

In any case there is no analogy between modern democracy, with its representative system and Athens where the policy of the state was decided by direct voting of a mass meeting in which all the citizens could take part.

We can, however, learn from Thucydides two most important truths about Democracy. First, that to succeed it must have good leaders.

Athens was ruined by bad leadership.

It was her politicians who lost the war.

In Pericles we have a picture of the ideal democratic leader. He was an idealist and as we should say a highly educated man. He was deeply interested in the philosophy and science of this time, a friend of the philosopher, Anaxagaras and the sculptor Phidias. To him the world owes the building and sculptures which, in their ruins, are perhaps the greatest artistic treasure of the world. He was a far-sighted practical statesman; there is little doubt that if Athens had followed his policy, she would have won the war. But also he had the character necessary to lead a ppeople and the rarest gift of a democratic politician – courage. By his rank, ability, and known integrity, he was able to exercise an independent control over the masses — to lead them instead of being led by them. He never sought power by improper means, so he was never compelled to flatter them.

On the contrary, he enjoyed so high an estimation that he could afford to anger them by contradiction.

Among his successors we see two types of disastrous leadership –Alcibiades, brilliant self-seeking, reckless, and unscrupulous; and Nicias, honest, well-meaning, trusted because he was respectable and religious, but without the courage to tell the people the unpalatable truths. It is difficult to say which of these two very different men contributed most to the ruin of his country.

 

 

 

 

Donald Trump and Xi Jinping are Two Elephants Who Want to Fight But They Are Setting up Barack Obama To Get Trampled

Xi and Donald are two heavyweights in a fairly uncrowded field at the moment and each has a lot to prove to onlookers. The former as leader of  perhaps the world’s only other economic superpower other than the United States, must put his muscle where his money is or face humiliation by being ordered around by the latter from his bully pulpit in the United States.

Already, Donald has ruffled Xi’s feathers with a couple of provocations, the most egregious of which is that he rejected the notion of being “dictated to” by Xi and he has said that he will not automatically observe the “one China” rule without some concessions from Xi by way of trade or other means.

Things have since escalated to the point where Xi’s personnel is accused of taking an American drone that was collecting scientific data in the international waters in South China Sea – not too far from Xi’s red line. The US military has issued a demand for the return of the drone but Xi and the Chinese are so far not tripping over themselves to act on the demande.

Trump meanwhile blasted out an early morning tweet saying that what “China” did was “unpresidented” and he was mercilessly ridiculed on social media for this unforgivable typo.

On the other side of the coin, however, is the peace-promoting Barack Obama who happens to be the president of the United States at this interval. He is not the one who provoked Xi. Indeed, for the eight years of his administration, it is said that he was overly cautious in dealing with Xi and others in an effort to keep the peace between America and the rest of the international community. He is not the one who accepted the call from the Taiwanese president either. He has at all times dealt with the region and the various governments with the maximum level of diplomacy he could muster.

But he could end up being the heavy in this fight that was picked by Donald against Xi. Because it so happens that he is still the president and it is his job to clean up this mess that is brewing with the drone, not Donald’s. Donald will not be president till January 20th and by that time he would have learned a lot of lessons and will probably be on his best behavior with the Chinese. In the meantime, however, if America does not react with some force or aggression to get the drone back that was taken by the Chinese, Obama could come off looking weak and afraid.

So you have these two elephants, Trump and Xi fighting and Barack is the one who will get trampled. Unless he is smart, employs delay tactics and leave the mess for Trump to clean up when he takes office in January. But that will take a lot of skill.

Wang Yi, Chinese Foreign Minister, Says “No Country is an exception to the ‘One China’ Rule”

Speaking with French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi reiterated that Taiwan is part of China and that in order to do business with China and to have good relations with China, all other states  – without exception – without exception.  Mr Yi, as well as other officials in the Chinese government, has been ruffled by President elect Donald Trump’s recent phone call to the President of self-ruled Taiwan and his subsequent statement that he may not necessarily abide by the “one China” rule unless China gave something in return by way of trade or other means.

Xi Jinping’s “Fear” of Donald Trump is the Single Most Dangerous Threat to World Peace and to the World Order Right Now

Xi Jinping “fears” Donald Trump. No question about that. The question is, how is he going to manage this fear? What is he going to do to alleviate this fear? Xi and the Chinese have been quietly and methodically preparing themselves for this very type of American/Western leader for a very long time. Now, the moment is quickly approaching that he will take some decisive action that will change the course of the history of world relations.

We are in the age of Donald Trump’s Leviathan. Thomas Hobbes, author of Leviathan, gave us the blueprint. He explained the whole thing to us – the nature of man within the context of international relations – in 1651. His ideas were explained in the book Theories of International Relations at page 32:

Fear of others leads to defensive war. There is no way for any man to secure himself so reasonable as anticipation…During the time men live without a common power to keep them all in awe; they are in that condition which is called war and such a war as is of every man against every man. …the weakest has the power to kill the strongest, either by machination or by confederacy with others….the life of man is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short….containing the pursuit of gain and glory would be particularly efficacious for diffidence leads to war primarily through fear of predation.  (Jack Donnelly)

Xi Jinping is going to have to defend himself and his country imminently against what will likely be an alliance of Western powers and maybe Russia. His fear that China could become Japan 2.0 will force him to take this defensive posture. He knew this day would come which is why China’s been aligning itself with the countries it has for the past several years. That is why China has gone into Africa, the Americas and the Caribbean, as well as Russia to cut deals and form alliances. China anticipated that the world order that has been in place post World War 2 would not last to infinity. China anticipates that America very well could emerge as a secondary or tertiary power. China has quietly been preparing.

Are they wrong to be so “fearful”? Clearly, China and the US are “Hobbesian equals” are they not? Well, not according to the way Trump seems to think of China. Trump seems to think he is going to dictate to China, as if China is a “weak” unequal to the United States. And this is the rub. This is where the rubber will hit the road for Xi. China and the US, under a Trump presidency, will enjoy conflict over “reputation.” China will be forced to defend its reputation as an equal player to the US, Russia and Europe in the new world order.

Every man’s desire is that his companion should value him at the same rate he sets upon himself…this can lead to conflict over reputation. (Jack Donnelly)

A humiliated, picked on, bullied China will be forced to defend its reputation, or lose face in the international arena. China will have to prove that, frankly, it has big balls just like all the other players in the game. And on top of that, China will resent having to prove this given that, in their esteem, China’s economic dominance over most, if not all other countries in the world, should require no additional proof of their size. Trump’s insistence on treating China like “other” is what will lead to conflict and what will push the Chinese leadership to prove that they, too, are big and bad.

Throw in the fact that the state of international relations is one of anarchy – the absence of government (especially given the chaotic state of politics in the United States at the moment on account of the alleged hacking of the presidential elections and the prospect of a president that is “illegitimate” unpredictable and controversial) – and this makes for  a very, very dangerous political climate. Because everyone, including Xi Jingping, is on edge.

During the time men live without a common power to keep them all in awe, they are in a condition which is called war and such a way is as is of every man against every man. Although fighting is not  constant, any dispute may quickly degenerate to violence.

Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, President of Peru, Vows to “Grab a Saw and Cut Off Relations” With America

Freshly minted and installed president of Peru is not afraid of Donald Trump. During his run for the presidency of Peru, the Princeton educated technocrat from the IMF and World Bank vowed to take on Trump and cut off relations if the Manhattan businessman failed to give Peru and Peruvians their due respect.

Recently in Lima, the Peruvian president gave an interview to the Washington Post. In the interview, when asked about what he would say to Donald Trump if and when the two men met, he said:

The first thing I am going to try to explain to him is that the U.S. is not in the dumps because of Mexico. There is hardly any Mexican immigration into the U.S. today. . . . I am going to tell him: “You are lucky you have Latin America. Sure, there are drugs and problems, that’s true. But you have to look on the positive side. We are less uncivilized than you think. We actually make a big contribution to the U.S. We don’t give you any real trouble. Latin immigration to the U.S. — sure, it should be done legally — makes a pretty positive contribution to the U.S. economy.” Also, if you look at the actual numbers, free-trade agreements have been pretty positive for the United States. How many car part plants in the Midwest depend on the Mexican market?

One of the things President elect Trump will have to think about is how he treats and approaches and talks about Central and South America which are America’s closest contiguous neighbors and which China is courting heavily with investments and bilateral trade deals. Just recently China sent its highest ranking diplomat to Mexico to schmooze and deal.

The Peruvian president admitted that Peru is indebted to China and that China is the biggest customer of Peru. When asked about the TPP (Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement a trade deal from which China is expressly excluded) Mr Kuczynski said:

I don’t love TPP so much. China is our biggest customer. So how can we support something that excludes them? …. China is our biggest market. It is about 22 percent of Peruvian exports — mostly metals but also some sophisticated agricultural products. We have no issues with China the way others may have with [its claims in the South China Sea].

If Trump follows through on his campaign promise to mass deport latinos and build a wall, he could alienate America’s neighbors to the south and create a vacuum which China seems only too willing and eager to fill. It is not hard to imagine that this could prove problematic and not just from a trade perspective.

President Elect Donald Trump Draws Almost Universal Criticism for Doubling Down on His China Dis

Trump is going to have a problem with Beijing and it could be a big one. It could be the showdown of his entire presidency. He really thinks he is going to be all about domestic policy and his domestic agenda and his wall and his Veterans Administration and his “America First” etc, but he is wrong. This is going to be all about foreign policy. Trump’s administration will be the first in US presidential history, probably, where foreign policy is all that matters.

How will he fare?

Time will tell. Certainly, he has good instincts on many of the issues involving America’s foreign policy and national security interests. Not all. But many. For example, he appears to have very bad instincts about his ability to read, and handle, and emerge as top dog over, Russian president Vladimir Putin. He has turned a deaf ear there and he has even acted in the most unpatriotic of ways by choosing to side with Mr Putin over US intelligence agencies on some very serious issues which could have repercussions for generations of Americans to come, long after he probably will long have been dead. He is thinking in a very short-sighted way with that. He is thinking selfishly. He is not thinking about the long term best interest of the country. And not only is this a mistake, it is a fatal one. Because it is not just the Trump Organization that will go down if he is wrong. It will be the world’s lasts remaining empire.

With that all said, there are some instincts that he has that are correct. The problem is that he seems to lack the right “temperament” to handle these things smartly and subtly and with political correctness. If he thinks that he can employ the same tactics he employed with his opponents in the presidential race and just slap Xi Jingping with an unpalatable nickname, and win, he has another thing coming. And it is not just Xi and the 2 billion Chinese he represents that will be a problem. Other countries and other regimes – even in Europe! – are on the fence with Trump and with the United States and one wrong move, and America could find itself without friends and allies.

Can the US go it alone? Is the country’s nuclear arsenal big enough to deter foreign invasion? Maybe. But. This is not the 1940s.  We are living in a world that is way changed. The men who built and constructed this “reality” probably are turning over helplessly in their graves. This is a new era.

The president elect is clearly nostalgic for the old days, for the glory days, for the way things were when strong, fearsome white men ruled the world and decided everything including where to draw lines to create countries. These days appear to be over. Looking at Trump’s cabinet, one can quickly discern that the president and all his men are way past their prime. They are in the sunset of their lives and they think they can restore the past, that they can leave it as it was, many years ago, for the next generation of their children – their posterity. Can they pull it off? Maybe. But it is still very doubtful because other countries and peoples have, over the decades, over a generation, changed. Things are not like they used to be. China certainly is not the same country it used to be. China can fight back. They will probably lose. But they can put on a good fight and if their recent actions are any indication, they fully intend to put on a good fight and go toe to toe with Donald Trump.

This weekend Mr Trump gave an interview where he basically, for all intents and purposes, said “pssh,” to China. When asked about his position on China’s “one China” policy, Mr Trump shot back that he does not have to abide by the policy unless he can negotiate certain new deals with the Chinese. And moreover, he asserted that he will not be dictated to by China.

According to a Washington Post report, China did not appreciate Mr Trump’s comments:

The remark elicited an angry response from Beijing, with the Foreign Ministry expressing “serious concern” and a party-controlled newspaper calling the president-elect “as ignorant as a child.” By appearing to treat Taiwan as just a bargaining chip for trade deals, he may also have irked Taipei, experts said.

Would Mr Trump take this position if China was not China? Or does he take these liberties because, well, China is China? That is to say, he certainly has not dared to take a position like that with Russia, has he? And economically as well as other ways, China is well ahead of Russia. So why does he respect Russia and even to a lesser extent, Europe, but not China? That is not to say he ought to accept unfair trade deals with China but he seems to fundamentally think he can treat China with disrespect in a way that he does dare with other lesser countries and the question is why? Is it that he thinks China will not fight back? Is it that he thinks he can “bully” them into obedience? Is he right? Or is he making a fatal mistake?

Again, the Washington Post:

A Monday editorial in the Global Times, a state-controlled newspaper known for its strident nationalism, suggested Trump ought to read some books on U.S.-China ties. It also warned that if the United States abandoned the One China policy, Beijing would have no reason to “put peace above using force to take back Taiwan.”

“China needs to launch a resolute struggle with him,” the editorial said. “Only after he’s hit some obstacles and truly understands that China and the rest of the world are not to be bullied will he gain some perception.”

Mr Trump’s hunches with China are probably not a hundred percent off based. But certainly the way he goes about handling this situation will make all the difference between peace and war. As a threshold matter, he ought to be a little bit more respectful and avoid making public comments about any state –especially ones with which he has a beef — until well after he has been inaugurated.

Just a tip.

China Dispatches its Top Diplomat Yang Jiechi to Mexico to Schmooze and Cut Deals

According to Reuters, Beijing is “deepening ties with Mexico” and they have been swapping mobile networks for oil fields. Top Chinese diplomat Yang Jiechi was just in Mexico just as Donald Trump was giving an interview on Fox News Sunday where he decried Beijing’s currency machinations as well as their forays in the South and East China Seas and their failure to exert more muscle on North Korea. The president elect also defended his decision to accept a telephone call from Taiwanese president on December 2, a move that ruffled the feathers of the Beijing regime, given that officials there felt that Mr Trump had violated the “one China” rule by taking the call.

Mr Trump deadpanned when asked about the matter “I will not take orders from Beijing.”

China is rumoured to have flown a war jet with nuclear capabilities over the disputed China seas this afternoon, after Mr Trump’s interview. Coupled with the flurry of diplomatic visits to US Neighbors like Mexico, it would seem to indicate that Beijing intends to play an aggressive and radical realist game of chess against the Hobbesian Mr Trump.

Who can tell where and how this and we will all end up?

BEIJING: Xi Jingping Sent a Bold Message to President Elect Donald Trump on Sunday by Flying Nuclear Bombers Over the South China Sea

Friends, the games have begun. The history of humanity is on a collision course with destiny. Strong and mighty men will wage nuclear war against each other in a few short years (or months) to come. There will be wars and battles unimaginable. And it is uncertain if there will be any survivors.

US president elect Donald Trump started it. He started it before he even won the presidency by taunting, mocking, daring and threatening China. That was bad enough. But then he took it to the brink by disrespecting China when he took a call from Taiwanese president Tsai Ing Wen in early December, rattling, unnerving and embarrassing the Chinese government (who expect their “one China” policy to be held sacrosanct) while at the same time upending decades of diplomacy between China and the United States.

China lodged a complaint with the White House and seemed to take it in stride after that. But today, the Xi Jingping government decided to send a coded message to Donald Trump. They decided to fly a H-6 bomber with nuclear capabilities over disputed terrain in the South China Sea.

MSN.com:

The Xian H-6 bomber flew along the disputed ‘nine-dash line’ around the South China Sea on Thursday, US officials told Fox News, passing over a number of disputed islands. The officials said it was designed to send a message to the incoming administration.

The Pentagon found out about the flight on Friday and officials said it was the first long-range flight along the demarcation line in more than 18 months – though this sortie extended further than previous ones.

The H-6 is the Chinese version of the Russian Tupolev Tu-16 jet bomber and has been used by China to drop nuclear devices in tests.

Mr Trump has used Twitter to criticise Beijing’s policies, including the build-up of “a massive military complex in the middle of the South China Sea”.

It probably and hopefully is one big fat bluff on the part of the Chinese. They probably are deathly afraid, as seemingly is the rest of the world, of Mr Trump and they just want to test him to see what, if anything, he can do, knowing full well that until he takes office on January 20th – assuming he successfully gets past the electoral college – that there is absolutely nothing Mr Trump can do, except tweet.

And it is not as if the US president elect is being all hostile all the time to China. He has selected his ambassador to the Asian country and it is a guy who is rather friendly to Xi Jingping’s regime. But still. China needs to remember that Trump has filled his cabinet with a whole bunch of retired, “mad dog” generals who will be only too happy to advise him to put his finger on the button.

Russia and China Veto Draft UN Resolution for Ceasefire in Syria. Trump Should Think About This

If US president elect Donald Trump thinks that he will easily divide and conquer Russia and China (only to devour China with one-sided trade deals and military threats) he should think again. These old allies are still, seemingly, political frick and frack and they are sticking together not only economically (BRICS, for example) but militarily as well. They both recently voted to block a draft UN resolution for a temporary ceasefire in Aleppo.

Russia and China are long-time BFFs.

China will not force Russia to give up Crimea any more than Russia will bother China about its imperialistic overtures in the South China Sea. And neither is going to mess with Bashir Assad’s turf, namely Syria.  This is not to say that Trump and Putin cannot have a perfectly healthy relationship as co-leaders of the new world. But if Trump thinks that he will easily push out China out of the playground and lock the gates, maybe he could have another thing coming because maybe he has under-estimated how much Moscow and Beijing not only respect each other but have each other’s backs and are ready, willing and able to stick together for their own common good.