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China Commentary
Tracking Military, Geopolitical & Strategic trends to determine China's impact Regionally Globally and Domestically
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New US military concept marks pivot to sea and air

New US military concept marks pivot to sea and air | China Commentary | Scoop.it

A new operational concept currently under development by the United States military will form a key part of its 'pivot to Asia' and represents a similar pivot from land-based to air- and sea-focused military strategies. The emergence of the Air-Sea Battle Concept (ASBC) follows years of classified work by the US military on how to contend with near-peer competitors or high-end asymmetric threats.

The US is beginning to brief some of its allies on the ASBC, demonstrating not only the importance of the concept in US military thinking, but also its intended role as a reassurance to partners in Asia. Few ideas are currently influencing the posture and doctrine of US naval and air forces more than the ASBC. However, few concepts of such potential significance have been so closely guarded – until recently only a small coterie of Pentagon officials knew its full details.

Though the limited official material available on the ASBC does not identify any specific nation that is seen as a threat, but rather sets out capabilities that an adversary could possess, the strategy is likely to have been conceived as a signal to Beijing that Washington is cognisant of its military developments, and is taking what it considers appropriate measures.

DOSID's insight:

Does the ASBC actually matter?
Air-sea combined operations are not a particularly new idea. The US military's Second World War Pacific operation was essentially an air-sea campaign, focused on naval deployments and aircraft carriers providing air cover for amphibious landings as part of the island-hopping strategy. Further, improving cross-domain operations seems like a simple exercise in stating the obviously desirable: in modern militaries integrating networked services is undoubtedly a positive way of enhancing the ultimate effectiveness and efficiency of any operation.

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China surveillance targets crime – and dissent

China surveillance targets crime – and dissent | China Commentary | Scoop.it
New technology brings the 'Big Brother' threat closer, human rights activists say.

 

For much of this year, Guangdong’s Southern Metropolis Daily has borne the brunt of attacks against China’s liberal press. But the latest publication to take the heat is Yanhuang Chunqiu (炎黄春秋), a liberal history-related journal regarded generally as one of China’s most outspoken publications.

 

News surfaced this month that the journal has come under attack from an unspecified senior official after running a lengthy article in September that praised former premier Zhao Ziyang (赵紫阳) for his progressive leadership in Sichuan in the 1970s, before he was ousted amid the unrest that followed democracy demonstrations in Beijing in 1989.

 

The Zhao Ziyang piece is the first full-length article on the former top leader since democracy protests were violently suppressed on June 4, 1989.

Yanhuang Chunqiu has grown bolder over the last couple of years, broaching historical and political topics that often totter on the edge of taboo.

 

In 2007, for example, the journal published a lengthy work by Xie Tao (谢韬) on the prospects for democracy in China. [More from ESWN here]. In an interview following the Xie Tao article, the journal’s publisher, Du Daozheng (杜导正), a well-known reform figure, said that before Xie’s article went to press he had “put the likelihood of getting into trouble at about 10 or 20 percent.”

 

DOSID's insight:

Human rights groups say the cameras are increasingly relied on to monitor and intimidate political dissidents, and China's two most restive ethnic groups: the Tibetans in the southwest and Uighurs in the northwest. China's video surveillance technology has grown more sophisticated, focusing on biometrics research.

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Reform now or there’ll be a revolution, Chinese leaders told

Reform now or there’ll be a revolution, Chinese leaders told | China Commentary | Scoop.it
The call from China’s top scholars came as footage emerged of activists breaching security to reach the wife of the Nobel laureate

 

China faces the prospect of “violent revolution” if the Government fails to implement political reform, a group of prominent intellectuals is warning six weeks after the country’s change of leadership.

 

The call, from 73 of China’s leading scholars, came as dramatic footage emerged yesterday of activists pushing past security officials to reach Liu Xia, the wife of the Nobel Prizewinning dissident Liu Xiaobo.

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Why Japan Can't Compete With China: The Power of Regional Demographics

Why Japan Can't Compete With China: The Power of Regional Demographics | China Commentary | Scoop.it
Tokyo officials are relying on retirees and aging ships to fill a temporary shortfall in coast guard manpower -- a move that reveals the broader limits of Japan's capabilities.

 

As China keeps extending its interests abroad, some predict that neighboring countries will form a coalition to counter it. Any of three states could take the lead on building such an alliance: India, South Korea, or Japan. Each has a different mix of technological, economic, and diplomatic power that -- when combined with the resources of other states -- might keep Beijing hemmed in, or so the theory goes.

 

But if there's one leading state that could be eliminated from this possibilities matrix soon, it's Japan. That's because it lacks another kind of capital -- human capital.

 

Japan has a population of 128 million, not even a tenth the size of China. This wouldn't be a huge problem, except that the Japanese are also a lot older: the median age there is 44.6 to China's 35.2. Even the median South Korean is much closer in age to the median Chinese than to her Japanese counterpart. 

 

Technology can help shore up people deficits -- automation and complex electronics beget efficiency. But only to a point. Beyond that, the need for more manpower begins to eat away at Japan's technological and industrial advantages.

 

And it isn't as though Japan's got the shiniest infrastructure, either. Take the country's coast guard, which offers a good example of the country's limits. For the past year, Japan has been embroiled in a major territorial dispute with China over a set of islands in the East China Sea. It's the coast guard that's shouldered much of the responsibility for standing up to China in these waters. The forces arranged on either side are tenuously balanced -- for now. But looking ahead, Tokyo officials worrythey won't have enough ships to defend what they know as the Senkaku islands (or what the Chinese call the Diaoyu islands):

DOSID's insight:

Chinas Demogrphy are already showing early signs of degenaration. Sheer Strength of numbers will not serve China well a few decades down the line. More by China Window [You would never imagine the the Han Population coud be soon in a "minority"] http://www.china-window.com/china_briefing/China-Population/index.shtml

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Hype and fear

Hype and fear | China Commentary | Scoop.it
America is leading the way in developing doctrines for cyber-warfare. Other countries may follow, but the value of offensive capabilities is overrated

EVEN as anxiety about jihadi terrorist threats has eased, thanks to the efforts of intelligence agencies and drone attacks’ disruption of the militants’ sanctuaries, fears over Western societies’ vulnerability to cyber-assaults have grown. Political and military leaders miss no chance to declare that cyberwar is already upon us. America’s defence secretary, Leon Panetta, talks of a “cyber-Pearl Harbour”. A senior official says privately that a cyber-attack on America that “would make 9/11 look like a tea party” is only a matter of time.

 

The nightmares are of mouseclicks exploding fuel refineries, frying power grids or blinding air-traffic controllers. The reality is already of countless anonymous attacks on governments and businesses. These seek to disrupt out of malice, or to steal swathes of valuable commercial or security-related data. Some experts believe that such thefts have cost hundreds of billions of dollars in stolen R&D.

DOSID's insight:

The Pentagon is also working on more permissive rules of engagement for offensive cyber-warfare, for example to close down a foreign server from which an attack was thought to be emanating. General Keith Alexander heads both Cyber Command (which has a budget of $3.4 billion for next year) and the National Security Agency. He has often called for greater flexibility in taking the attack to the “enemy”. The emergence of new cyber-warfare doctrines in America is being watched closely by allies who may follow where America leads—as well as by potential adversaries.

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What If There Was a Cold War Between the U.S. and China? | TIME.com

What If There Was a Cold War Between the U.S. and China? | TIME.com | China Commentary | Scoop.it

This is a “what if” interview from the World Economic Forum’s Risk Response Network. To view the rest of the series, click here.


We’re already seeing a return to Cold War era containment strategies as the relationship between the world’s two largest economies deteriorates, argues Ian Bremmer, president of the Eurasia Group and author of Every Nation for Itself: Winners and Losers in a G-Zero World. The World Economic Forum, in collaboration with TIME, quizzed Bremmer on the nature of U.S.-Chinese tensions and what can be done to soften them.

 

Why is the specter of U.S.-China confrontation so real?

We’re in a situation where the world’s largest economy is not doing so well, the world’s second largest economy is still growing very strongly, albeit at a slower rate, and the two countries have totally incompatible economic and political systems. The relationship between China and America is only becoming more problematic. In the foreign policy debates ahead of the US presidential elections, Obama referred to China as an “adversary” for the first time. It’s not just about political posturing. China is the single biggest challenge to US foreign policy, in that Americans mostly see foreign policy in terms of how it impacts the American economy, and China is increasingly a market that many people believe is not playing by the rules, from intellectual property to state capitalism to cyber attacks.

(MORE: Why China Could Be Obama’s Second-Term Foreign Policy Headache)

Similarly, in Chinese state media, you’re seeing much more assertiveness, more talk of the Americans trying to contain China, the Americans “not wanting us to be world beaters”, “not wanting us to be number one”. There’s no question that the Americans and the Chinese at the highest level do understand that it’s dangerous for both countries to allow their relationship to be a disaster, so they’re trying to avoid unnecessary conflict. But the problem isn’t really unnecessary conflict—it’s that the necessary conflict over huge structural issues like currency and trade is building up.

What warning signs have you seen?

There’s the massive increase in tensions between China and Japan: in the last few weeks, there were anti-Japan demonstrations in about 100 cities in China, Japanese car sales in China were down 49% last month, and every CEO I spoke to at the recent IMF meeting in Tokyo said that this issue would dramatically change their view on doing business in China. This is significant because, ultimately, America is Japan’s defence policy: they have a strategic alliance, so if there is a problem between Japan and China, we know where the US is going to come down.

How does China’s holding of U.S. government debt affect the relationship?

The Japanese are actually on track to become the largest holder of US debt, externally, not China. China is trying to decouple from the dollar. If you look at what they’re doing in building domestic consumption and expanding South-South trade, then it’s clear they want to be in a position where there’s less mutual dependence with America. But that’s a long way off, and China is still very much America’s banker.

What about China’s political succession?

 

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Oil field produces 40 mln tonnes for 10th year - Xinhua | English.news.cn

Oil field produces 40 mln tonnes for 10th year - Xinhua | English.news.cn | China Commentary | Scoop.it

 PetroChina Daqing Oilfield, a subsidiary of PetroChina, produced 40 million tonnes of crude oil in 2012, the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) said.

This is the tenth consecutive year for the country's largest oil field to yield more than 40 million tonnes of crude oil, according to the CNPC, the parent of public-listed PetroChina.

Previously, the oil field had seen annual output exceed 50 million tonnes, but output shrank due to harder operations in oil exploitation, according to the CNPC, the country's largest oil producer and supplier.

The oil field aims to secure annual crude oil production of 40 million tonnes during the 12th Five-year Plan period (2011-2015).

In 2012, Daqing also produced 3.3 billion cubic meters of natural gas. And the oil field added 55.35 million tonnes of proven oil reserves.

Discovered in 1959, Daqing is located in northeast China's Heilongjiang Province.

China consumed 450 million tonnes of crude oil in 2011, 250 million tonnes of which were imported, and both the oil consumption and the oil import ratio will continue to rise, according to the CNPC.

 
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China’s Maritime Surveillance Fleet Adds Muscle

China’s Maritime Surveillance Fleet Adds Muscle | China Commentary | Scoop.it

As China continues to harden its stance on territorial disputes, a recent report notes that the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) has transferred 11 decommissioned warships, including two destroyers, to the country’s maritime surveillance agency.

 

After undergoing renovation, the vessels—which include the two Type 051 (Luda I-class) guided-missile destroyers (DDG) Nanning andNanjing, as well as surveillance ships, tugs and icebreakers—were transferredto the China Marine Surveillance (CMS) agency to “alleviate the insufficiency of vessels used to protect maritime interests.” The two 3,250-tonne destroyers, which can travel at a maximum speed of 32 knots, are to split their time between the East China Sea, the scene of a mounting dispute with Japan and Taiwan over the Diaoyu/Senkaku islands, and the South China Sea, where China has overlapping territorial claims with a number of countries, including Vietnam and the Philippines. Prior to their decommissioning last year, the two 30-plus-year-old DDGs were armed with 130mm guns with a range of 29km, as well as anti-ship missiles.

 

China’s Ministry of National Defense and the CMS have yet to comment on the transfer.

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China’s growing military might obscures the real threat of cyberwar

China’s growing military might obscures the real threat of cyberwar | China Commentary | Scoop.it

China is growing in military prowess. Obviously, the manpower available is unmatched, but the technology is catching up as well. Their military budget has jumped to $100 billion in the last decade. It’s only about a sixth of what the United States spends, but China is growing fast. In ten years, their budget has quintupled. China is eyeing its role as a military and economic superpower, and other countries should be concerned, but not for the obvious reasons.

 

A fantastic overview at Popular Science points out that the US only learned of China’s J-20 fighter jet last year when Secretary of Defense Robert Gates visited the country. China is also ramping up production of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). The Yilong rivals the American Predator drone, while the BZK-005 compares favorably to the Global Hawk. Even more interesting is that China has been working on retrofitting an aircraft carrier of Soviet make and vintage. Liaoning, China’s name for the recommissioned vessel, will sport surface-to-air missiles, an automated machine gun, and the capability to carry fifty aircraft.

 
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The shale revolution’s shifting geopolitics

The shale revolution’s shifting geopolitics | China Commentary | Scoop.it
It strengthens the United States, reduces China’s energy dependence, and generates a major global stimulus, while potentially destabilising both the Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia. 

The shale energy revolution is likely to shift the tectonic plates of global power in ways that are largely beneficial to the West and reinforce U.S. power and influence during the first half of this century. Yet most public discussion of shale’s potential either focuses on the alleged environmental dangers of fracking or on how shale will affect the market price of natural gas. Both discussions blind policymakers to the true scale of the shale revolution.

 

The real impact stems from its effect on the oil market. Shale gas offers the means to vastly increase the supply of fossil fuels for transportation, which will cut into the rising demand for oil — fuelled in part by China’s economic growth — that has dominated energy policymaking over the last decade.

 

About China

China has even greater incentives to develop its shale gas resources. According to the U.S. Energy Department’s Energy Information Administration, the country’s recoverable resources are larger than those of the United States at 36 trillion cubic meters. The main geostrategic reason for Beijing to develop shale gas for transportation is that the U.S. Navy controls the Pacific and most Chinese oil arrives by tanker. Large-scale use of natural gas for transportation would protect China from much of the effect of a U.S. blockade.

 

By contrast, the outlook for Russia and Saudi Arabia seems bleak. As the decade progresses, shale will be developed worldwide and natural gas infrastructures will be constructed. It is difficult to see how the markets will avoid dropping oil prices.

 

Geopolitically, the shale revolution strengthens the United States, reduces China’s energy dependence, generates a major global stimulus, which takes the Western economies off the fiscal rocks, while potentially destabilising both the Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia. The incentives for the West and China to develop shale-based fossil fuel resources are so great that they will continue to press ahead with them. (Alan Riley is a professor of energy law at The City Law School at City University London.) — New York Times News Service

 
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"Tibet is Burning, U.N. Sleeping! Wake Up, Wake Up, United Nations!"

"Tibet is Burning, U.N. Sleeping!" "China lies, people die!" "Wake Up, Wake Up, United Nations!" "United Nations, where are you?" The U.N. is silent as China...
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Tiananmen: China's Unhealed Wound

Tiananmen: China's Unhealed Wound | China Commentary | Scoop.it
Twenty years after the army killed untold numbers of unarmed civilians in Beijing and other cities on and around June 3-4, 1989, the Chinese government continues to victimize survivors, victims’ families, and others who challenge the official...
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China in £900m African iron ore move

China in £900m African iron ore move | China Commentary | Scoop.it
China is poised to gain control of a key iron ore supply route in Africa as the country continues to expand its dominance over the continent’s natural resources.

 

The privately owned Hanlong Group intends to take over Sundance Resources, an Australian mining company, early next year in a A$1.4bn (£900m) deal, according to reports from Chinese state media.

 

The acquisition process is expected to start on Feb 26 and end on March 1 after the relevant documents are submitted to the Australian authorities.

Details of the timetable emerged following a drawn-out takeover process, which has seen deadlines repeatedly pushed back.

 

Hanlong made its first bid for Sundance back in July 2011, but falling demand for iron ore saw the miner announce in August that it had accepted a lower takeover offer from Hanlong,

 

The acquisition, should it complete to timetable, would hand Hanlong control of the Mbalam iron ore mine that straddles the West African countries of Cameroon and the Republic of Congo. The region is seen as a major source of iron ore that could reduce China’s dependence on Australia and Brazil.

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The Emperors, No Clothes: a Party fable?

The Emperors, No Clothes: a Party fable? | China Commentary | Scoop.it
China's leaders hope to convince the people they are not privileged elites, but in fact are common folk open to the scrutiny of the masses.

 

In Hans Christian Andersen’s parable of power, pride and slavish self-deception, The Emperor’s New Clothes, the emperor is himself among the suckers duped into believing the “uncommonly fine” fabric made for him by two swindlers is the real stuff. As everyone doubtless knows, the tale ends with the emperor making a grand procession before the townsfolk without a thread to conceal his nakedness. The act of deception — “Oh, how fine are the Emperor’s new clothes! Don’t they fit him to perfection?” — might have worked had a child not cried out the innocent truth: “But he hasn’t got anything on!”

 

In China, Andersen’s story (long familiar to Chinese) is now being re-enacted inside out. The emperors, the top leaders of the Chinese Communist Party, are party to the swindle. And the audacious act of deception is to convince the townsfolk that despite all outward appearances, Party leaders are not mantled with wealth and privilege — they are, in fact, naked.

 

Since he became General Secretary in November, Xi Jinping has made an extreme public relations makeover the centerpiece of his game plan. He wants to convince Chinese that the CCP’s fifth generation of leaders is down-to-earth, spurns ostentation, that it is engaged with the pocketbook concerns of the general population — but most of all that it is clean.

DOSID's insight:

"“Xi Jinping Visits Poor Families in Hebei: Dinner Is Just 4 Dishes and One Soup, No Alcohol"....That is an austerity measure????

 

Or a copycat popularistic political move as practiced by dynastic families in India- Chinas southern neighbour and arch rival??

 

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Taboo Yanhuang Chunqiu article still available online

Taboo Yanhuang Chunqiu article still available online | China Commentary | Scoop.it

For much of this year, Guangdong’s Southern Metropolis Daily has borne the brunt of attacks against China’s liberal press. But the latest publication to take the heat is Yanhuang Chunqiu (炎黄春秋), a liberal history-related journal regarded generally as one of China’s most outspoken publications.

 

News surfaced this month that the journal has come under attack from an unspecified senior official after running a lengthy article in September that praised former premier Zhao Ziyang (赵紫阳) for his progressive leadership in Sichuan in the 1970s, before he was ousted amid the unrest that followed democracy demonstrations in Beijing in 1989.

 

The Zhao Ziyang piece is the first full-length article on the former top leader since democracy protests were violently suppressed on June 4, 1989.

Yanhuang Chunqiu has grown bolder over the last couple of years, broaching historical and political topics that often totter on the edge of taboo.

 

In 2007, for example, the journal published a lengthy work by Xie Tao (谢韬) on the prospects for democracy in China. [More from ESWN here]. In an interview following the Xie Tao article, the journal’s publisher, Du Daozheng (杜导正), a well-known reform figure, said that before Xie’s article went to press he had “put the likelihood of getting into trouble at about 10 or 20 percent.”

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New freedom of speech battle erupts as China’s censors try to crack down

New freedom of speech battle erupts as China’s censors try to crack down | China Commentary | Scoop.it
Journalists from China’s most respected newspaper have branded the censors ‘tyrannical and stupid’ for hijacking a new year editorial

 

China’s new leadership faced an unprecedented challenge to its muzzling of the press yesterday as journalists angered by brazen meddling in one of its most influential newspapers launched a furious riposte against state censorship.

 

An open letter signed by 50 journalists angered by the complete rewriting of Southern Weekend’s first editorial column of 2013 branded the censors

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China’s “most severe traffic law in history”

China’s “most severe traffic law in history” | China Commentary | Scoop.it

China’s newspapers are today mulling over what is being portrayed as a sea change on China’s roads, a new regulation that has caused some consternation: Running a yellow light (note yellow, not red) will now be severely punished with an automatic deduction of six points! Thus cartoons and graphic depictions of cars, traffic lights and other nondescript yellow things (see gallery below) all bellow out that running a yellow light (闯黄灯) is now no longer cool.

 

Yet when a journalist from Orient Today (东方今报) from Henan province yesterday went to observe the traffic in Zhengzhou (郑州), capital of Henan province, he found the usual black Audis and other cars jumping yellow lights, some drivers talking on their mobile phones while they did so, as if there were no new “most severe traffic law in history” in force in China.

DOSID's insight:

There was heated discussion of the new traffic regulations on Sina Weibo. A survey asking respondents what they thought of the six points deduction for running a yellow light found that over 70% of participants found it unreasonable.

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It’s global cyber war out there

It’s global cyber war out there | China Commentary | Scoop.it
Top executives may not be aware of them, but ASIO knows only too well the alarming potential risks posed by cyber terrorism and corporate espionage.

 

Sitting in an office in the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation’s Soviet-style building, which mirrors the Orwellian bunker one might imagine, Australia’s most experienced spy master, David Irvine, has a lot on his mind as he gazes over Lake Burley Griffin.

 

Irvine, the director-general of ASIO, knows Australian business and the government are engaged in a new, and irreversible, “cold cyberwar”, which the Americans have designated as the fifth and most uncertain defence domain.

And he believes the “target environment” is becoming richer by the day as our electricity, power, transport, and communications infrastructures are inexorably integrated into the internet.

 

These indispensable assets were never designed with digital vulnerabilities in mind. Yet with the privatisation of so many utilities over the past three decades, government has unwittingly delegated national security to business.

 

This is why ASIO believes national security reforms need to be made to the regulations governing essential infrastructure, including telecommunications.

“The more rocks we turn over in cyberspace, the more we find ... the internet and increased connectivity has expanded infinitely the opportunities for [these threats]”, Irvine says.

 

Just as global banking systems were not sufficiently well-capitalised to absorb the losses that suddenly materialised in 2008, Australian spooks worry that business does not have enough insurance against major unexpected cyber events, either.

 

And Irvine understands that infrastructure represents merely one tactical vulnerability in the vast cyber-threat matrix, which includes state and non-state espionage, organised crime, and the new prospect of cyber terror.

 

Since 2003 the Chinese have executed advanced cyber-espionage operations against the West, including Australia, stealing hundreds of billions worth of business and military secrets in what United States officials say is “the greatest transfer of wealth in history”.

DOSID's insight:

Quote ..." Since 2003 the Chinese have executed advanced cyber-espionage operations against the West, including Australia, stealing hundreds of billions worth of business and military secrets in what United States officials say is “the greatest transfer of wealth in history”."

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Did Satellites Capture China's Mysterious Giant War Plane?

Did Satellites Capture China's Mysterious Giant War Plane? | China Commentary | Scoop.it

The GeoEye 1 and IKONOS spacecraft have captured satellite images of the mysterious Xian Aircraft Corporation Y-20, China's first long range jet transport. It shows the clearest image of the giant transport plane yet and reveals that China's plane looks a lot like the U.S. Air Force's C-17. That's not an accident.

The satellite images, which were obtained by Wired's Danger Room, show China's Y-20 as having the same "wide swept wing and T-shaped tail" as the Boeing made C-17. The blueprints of the C-17 were stolen by spies working for Boeing and given to China. This plane's design is a rip off.

What China can't rip off though is the engines that are necessary to power the plane. Apparently, there are only four companies capable of building the kind of engines that the Y-20 needs. Three are Western companies (GE/CFM, Rolls Royce and Pratt & Whitney) and one is Russian. It's assumed that China will have to use Russian engines to lift its 200 ton body (however, Russia is reluctant to sell engines to China because China might rip them off) and those engines may lack the performance in modern transport planes. So though the Y-20 may look like an American giant transport plane, it may actually be all show and no go. [Wired, Image Credit: GeoEye GeoEye 1]

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Chinese Communist party officials outline austerity plans - Telegraph

Chinese Communist party officials outline austerity plans  - Telegraph | China Commentary | Scoop.it
Government officials across China have begun the new year with a long list of austerity measures designed to persuade the public that they are down-to-earth and hard-working.
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Cyberwar backone ?-Submarine Cable Map

Cyberwar backone ?-Submarine Cable Map | China Commentary | Scoop.it
TeleGeography's comprehensive and regularly updated interactive map of the world's major submarine cable systems and landing stations.
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Map updated on December 17th 2012. 

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China Space Race Will Not Be With NASA, But With SpaceX

China Space Race Will Not Be With NASA, But With SpaceX | China Commentary | Scoop.it

This weekend, China became the third country in history to have a space base in orbit. Some say this means almost nothing for the U.S., while others insist it's time we start training our Space Marines for Operation Enduring Lunar Freedom. In reality, the implications of China's move could be a much cooler third option: a new space race between the Chinese government and U.S. startups.

 

But why not a space race between the Chinese government and the U.S. government? Well, because that’s ridiculous. As with every other attempt to make China our new mortal enemy to fill the hole in our hearts left by the USSR, trying to fabricate competition between the U.S. and China in space does not work. China’s current mission will put them where we were roughly 50 years ago. Some have made a tortoise-and-the-hare analogy, but it simply does not apply. Yes, NASA has slowed down along with its slowing budget, but with the new Space Launch System (SLS), America will be sending people to asteroids and Mars around the time China is going to the moon.

 

So onto the more interesting race: China vs. U.S. companies.


Via Stratocumulus
DOSID's insight:

A word about Chinas Space Budget form- http://www.avatarpoint.com/SB.html :

 

The budgets listed are the official budgets from the different space agencies' homepages. Note that the Chinese budget of $500 million is from official figures by Luo Ge, vice administrator of the China National Space Administration. The budget is not normalized to the expenses of space research in each country/region, i.e. higher budget does not mean more activity or better performance in space exploration. Avatapoint no longer updates this data as of 2008. A future proposed design is underconstuction and waiting for committe review before new data will be added.

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DOSID's comment, January 1, 2013 11:47 PM
Re scooping with your permission. Thank you in advance.
Stratocumulus's comment, January 2, 2013 2:14 PM
Any time. You are more than welcome.
DOSID's comment, January 2, 2013 11:34 PM
Thank you
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Xi calls for more wisdom, courage to deepen reform |Politics |chinadaily.com.cn

Xi calls for more wisdom, courage to deepen reform |Politics |chinadaily.com.cn | China Commentary | Scoop.it
The General Secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee has called for more political courage and wisdom to deepen the country's reform.

 

Xi Jinping made the comments when presiding over a group study held by the CPC CentralCommittee Political Bureau on Monday, when bureau members were given a lecture onpromoting China's reform.

 

Xi stressed that the country will stick to its economic reform to build up a socialist marketeconomy and adhere to the China's basic state policy of opening up.

 

He also underlined that the Party should improve reform policies by learning from people'spractices and demand that achievements benefit more people in a fairer way.

 

Xi said the opening up and reform policy is an ongoing job. Problems occurring during reformcould only be solved by methods created by reform.

 

He said the policy is a long-term, arduous and onerous cause which needs efforts fromgeneration to generation.

 

China implemented its opening up and reform policy in 1978 after ending the "culturalrevolution" (1966-1976).

 

Xi said that five principles should be adhered to based on more than 30 years of experience ofthe policy.

DOSID's insight:

What are  "The Five Principles":

 

Firstly, opening up and reform must be implemented along the path of socialism with Chinesecharacteristics.

 

Secondly, opening up and reform must be conducted with correct methods in line with China'snational conditions and should be improved with further practice.

 

Thirdly, opening up and reform is like a systematic project which should be conducted in acoordinated way and needs supporting measures.

 

Fourthly, opening up and reform must be conducted based on a premise of stability, and 

 

Lastly, the policy should be conducted under the leadership of the CPC and respect grassroots innovation.

 

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China expels journalist after Wen revelations

China expels journalist after Wen revelations | China Commentary | Scoop.it
AN AUSTRALIAN journalist with The New York Times has been expelled from China in an apparent act of retaliation for a news report about the family wealth of the Chinese Premier, Wen Jiabao.

 

After 15 years in China, including 12 as a reporter, Chris Buckley flew out of Beijing at 6.30pm on Monday with his wife and 12-year-old daughter, after authorities declined to renew his annual media accreditation and residence visa.

 

His expulsion followed an October 25 investigative report by a colleague at The New York Times that revealed Mr Wen's close relatives had acquired at least $2.7 billion in assets.

 

Fairfax understands that Buckley, who rejoined The New York Times in October after a stint at Reuters, has received no official explanation of why his application has not been accepted after a delay of more than two months.

 

Buckley's treatment raises concerns about bilateral reciprocity, given reporters and propaganda workers from Chinese state media are given unimpeded access to Australia and the US.

It also illustrates the challenge facing the new leader, Xi Jinping.

 

DOSID's insight:

Note : Bloomberg, the business news service, has been blocked in China since revealing on June 29 that close relatives of Mr Xi had quietly accrued assets that tally up to more than $1 billion.


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China's railway investment may top US$112bn in 2013

China's railway investment may top US$112bn in 2013 | China Commentary | Scoop.it

In order to bolster economic growth, China is expected to continue expanding its railway investment in 2013. The rapid expansion could continue draining government coffers without the support of private investment.

 

As the mileage of railway investments next year may exceed this year's level, the total scale of railway investments will range from 500-700 billion yuan (US$80-$112 billion) in 2013.

 

After remaining in the doldrums for half a year, railway construction started to pick up in the fourth quarter.

 

Funding for railway investments comes from several sources: direct investment by the central government, railway companies, municipal governments, railway bonds, private capital and railway loans. Various central-level government agencies have been supportive of the Ministry of Railways in their investments. In September, in its monetary policy report, the People's Bank of China — China's central bank — explicitly pledged to support the continuation of railway and other infrastructure construction projects, prompting major banks to increase their loans for railway projects.

DOSID's insight:

It seems that the investment in railways is almost at par with Chinas Defence budget and Internal Security budget !

 

Quote from Reuters dated 5th March 2012 “For 2012, China set combined central and local government spending on domestic security at 701.8 billion yuan ($111.4 billion), compared with 629.3 billion yuan in 2011, when it grew by nearly 13.8 percent, the Chinese-language report showed.

China will boost defence spending by 11.2 percent this year to 670.3 billion yuan ($106.4 billion).”

 

Read more about Chinas Defence and Internal Security budget here http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/03/05/us-china-parliament-security-idUSTRE82403J20120305

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