Canada’s Indo-Pacific pivot | The Interpreter

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, ahead of an election next month, is seeking to fend off an immediate and growing scandal around past episodes of wearing “brownface”. But whatever Trudeau’s fate at the polls, his term in office has come as Canada wrestles with longer-term shifts in global trends which see the country paying far greater attention to Asia and the Pacific than keeping traditional focus on the Atlantic. This was clearly demonstrated a fortnight ago when HMCS Ottawa, a frigate in the Canadian Navy, was moving from its North Korean…

Oil giant acclaims breakthroughs for South China Sea

The Xingwang deep-sea semi-submersible drilling platform at the Liwan 3-2 gas field in the South China Sea. Photo: Xinhua A state energy giant’s announcement it had overcome temperature and pressure obstacles shows that China has overcome technological obstacles to develop and explore deep water oil and gas in the South China Sea, a Chinese expert said on Sunday. Nanhai West Oil Production, affiliated with the China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC), has established a theory of natural gas accumulation in the high temperature and pressure areas of the Ying-qiong Basin,…

Asia Times | Navy counters ‘Great Wall of SAMS’ with Triton drones

Got the feeling, you’re being watched? Well, you are … President Trump has upped the ante in the China Sea, once again. The US Navy is sending two high-altitude MQ-4C Triton drones to Guam on their first overseas deployment, placing the sophisticated surveillance platform deep within the Indo-Pacific at a time of rising tensions with China and stepped-up Navy patrols through the Taiwan Strait, Breaking Defense reported. A group of sailors from the Navy’s Unmanned Patrol Squadron 19, (VUP 19) the first unit to fly the Triton, left their base…

When a President demands loyalty from journalists

When a President demands loyalty from journalists MORE in wonder than criticism, we want to file this comment on a recent development in China that imposes a strange requirement on the practice of journalism in that country. The Guardian, the UK-based daily newspaper, published on September 20 a news report that caught our eye as a professional media organization. The news article, written by Lily Kuo from Beijing, reported that starting October, Chinese journalists will be tested on their loyalty to China’s President Xi Jinping. Chinese journalists will soon be…

Modernizing the Military: China’s Path to Hegemony?

By Alexia Frangopoulos | September 22, 2019 In the tunnels of the “Underground Great Wall” are stacked hundreds of nuclear ICBMs, hidden from the eyes of the world. This 5,000 kilometer passageway is just one part of China’s plan to modernize and increase the size, power, and efficiency of its already gargantuan military.  In 2019, the People’s Liberation Army’s annual defense budget was 1.19 trillion yuan ($177.5 billion), up 7.5 percent from last year’s defense budget. China is allocating increasing amounts of money to programs and initiatives that increase…

The Gilmer Mirror – Hong Kong Gateway to the South China Sea

In 1966 I was a young man, a United States Marine in fact, aboard the USS Valley Forge LPH-8.  Not exactly a Princess cruise ship mind you but it did float and on one beautiful day it floated into Hong Kong harbor.  What a breath taking sight unfolded before me. On one side there was a small mountain or large hill I learned was simply called “The Peak.”  On the other side was a huge cluster of mainly commercial buildings and hotels including the world reknown Pennisula Hotel. There was…

DFA: UN will trash SCS ruling

DFA: UN will trash SCS ruling Pia Lee-Brago (The Philippine Star) – September 23, 2019 – 12:00am MANILA, Philippines — Member states of the United Nations will “trash” the Philippines’ arbitral award, Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. said yesterday, as he called the statements of support of the European Union (EU) and G7 for maritime rules to be respected a “scrap of paper.” “UN numbers will trash our Arbitral Award; tested it with NAM (Non-Aligned Movement). Lost. You’re not serious about 28 EU states; they’re dying for Chinese…

This Lousy Warship Is Why China Beat the Navy in a South China Sea ‘War’

Key point: The Littoral Combat Ship did not perform as expected. The U.S. Navy in late 2019 or 2020 expects to select a shipyard to build the fleet’s new guided-missile frigate. The 20 heavily-armed frigates will replace roughly half of the 50 or so Littoral Combat Ships (LCS) that the Navy had planned to buy before realizing that the lightly-armed LCS likely couldn’t survive in a major shooting war. Just how vulnerable is the LCS? In 2013 journalist Kyle Mizokami put the speedy, 3,000-ton-displacement vessel to the test. Booting up Command:…