All tagged china

An Uncomfortable Past

Pundits list South Korea’s close economic ties with China and need for China’s cooperation in dealing with North Korea as possible reasons for this unprecedented closeness. But another factor unrelated to the economy or security is likely prompting this intimacy—namely, the two countries’ strong sense of solidarity as victims of Japanese imperialism. Beginning in 2013, the tension between South Korea and Japan over unresolved historical controversies has risen, culminating in the suspension of dialogue between the highest-level leaders.

Myan-marred Relations

Chinese participation in the Burmese economy—and civil conflict—at the people’s expense has delegitimized Beijing in the eyes of Burmese citizens. China has argued it is providing employment and crucial infrastructure to a truly underdeveloped region. However, ethnic minority activists are skeptical that the benefits of China’s economic activity in Burma will trickle down as far as officials claim.

Paki-standing Alone

In early March, eight men and women attacked the central train station of Kunming, the capital of the southwestern province Yunnan. Armed with knives, these people slaughtered 28 civilians and left 130 injured in what the Chinese media have dubbed “China’s 9/11.” As pressure mounts on Beijing to react swiftly, Islamabad must do all it can to ensure that Beijing, its most powerful ally, does not lose faith but remains, in the words of former President Pervez Musharraf, a “time-tested and all-weather friend.”

From Sea to Shining...Puddle?

Despite these gloomy numbers, the American West's 49'er mentality of continual and aggressive resource consumption still persists. While the particular resource in this case is largely abundant (at least when compared to other natural resources) it is in no way infinite, much less renewable in the short-term. If it continues down this path, the West could be in serious trouble.

This trial, however, has nothing to do with corruption, bribery, or murder committed by a party member. It has everything to do with a party searching for a scapegoat before a new generation of leaders takes center stage.

A Mukden in the Making

Let’s remember, though, what September 18th is the anniversary of. The Mukden Incident was a contrived pretext for expanding Japan’s empire into what had until then been Chinese territory. What we are seeing now are the first rumblings of a rising China looking to throw its newfound wealth and power around.

In the beginning of October 1949, the bloody Chinese Civil War was nearing its end, and Mao Zedong had proudly declared the foundation of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). With the Nationalists defeated, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) could now focus on its aims on fully reuniting the country and instituting socialism. The disastrous effects of the latter aim are well-known.

China’s awe-inspiring economic growth over the past three decades has inspired envy, emulation, and animosity all over the world. As I have argued before, I think that China will be a major global player in this century and that its influence will increase over time. But as we learned the hard way in 2008, no matter how smooth an economic course may seem, there are, inevitably, unforeseen problems.

On December 17, 2011, North Korea lost Kim Jong-il ­– its “Dear Leader” – to a heart attack. Without missing a beat, North Korea’s state-run media anointed his third son Kim Jong-un as the “Great Successor” and placed the fate of the North Korean people squarely in his 28-year-old hands. One look at North Korea’s pudgy new protagonist is enough to make me worry not only about the fate of the North Korean people, but about the future security of the East Asian region as a whole.

At the recent Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit in Honolulu, President Obama continued his march towards massive free trade expansion, and the most prominent headlines from the summit had to do with a the radical new proposal for a mega free trade area—the Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership (TPP).