Posted: April 7th, 2013 | Author: Tingdong Lu | Filed under: China, Government, Governmental Policies, International Business, International Relations, National economy, Politics | Tags: Apple, business war, China, Samsung, US
Apple is “eating” China, or China is “invading” Apple
On March 15, World Consumer Rights Day, China’s national TV broadcaster CCTV exposed what it called Apple’s discriminatory warranty-repair policy in an investigative programme. In this programme it was claimed that Apple discriminates against Chinese Apple users by treating them as second-class citizens. People’s Daily, an official government newspaper, even accused Apple as a firm of “unparalleled arrogance.” It reported that Apple offers shorter guarantees than in other countries and escapes after-sale obligations. However, as a response, Apple posted an announcement on its official Chinese website stating that it providers a 90-day warranty on repairs, just like in the United States. This is longer than the 30 days required by Chinese law. Both sides have their own arguments. The citizens would consider it as one normal economic case. However, the experts seem think this issue is not as simple as the public thinks. Hence, what is behind the Chinese government’s public “sanction” of Apple? Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: April 1st, 2013 | Author: Tingdong Lu | Filed under: Asia-Pacific, International Relations, Nuclear Dispute | Tags: B-52 bombers, N. Korea, nuclear strike drills, S. Korea, US
The poster shows the relation between N. Korea and US
The dispute about N. Korea has never stopped in the international communities. Any petty action of Pyongyang will lead an endless discussion by mass media. From the Korean War to the nuclear test recently, N. Korea shows us its ambition that wants to be more powerful on the global platform. Nevertheless, it is the consequence that United States does not want to see, for N. Korea is one dangerous socialist state with nuke power from their perspective.
The report from Seoul on March 21st illustrate that as the response to use of nuclear armed US B-52 bombers in joint military drills with South Korea, North Korean army possible strike against US military based in Japan. A spokesman of the Pyongyang supreme command said they won’t tolerate US set them as a target of nuclear strike drills.
The Korea issue is one of the toughest problems in the world until now. From the regional aspect, it is the competition between N. Korea and S. Korea. However, on the global strategic level, it is the US-supported Western countries and China-backed Eastern countries’ struggle. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: March 9th, 2013 | Author: Tingdong Lu | Filed under: China, International Relations | Tags: China, cyber-attack, UNIT 61398, US
When the internet was established by the United States Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in 1969, the public never imaged the revolution. However, the original purposes of internet are rarely known by people. At the beginning, the ARPA-net was founded mainly for military research purposes. If a war breaks out, any parts of the internet are attacked, and other parts can maintain the normal communication. But in the next few decades, the internet is no longer traditional anymore; it opened to the commercial market and that is what we see today.
A few days ago, one breaking news appeared acrose the mainstream media. The U.S. denounced the cyber-attacks by China, and the Chinese refuted the cyber-attack allegation. So, who is the just side? Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: September 22nd, 2012 | Author: Diane | Filed under: China, Geo-Political Disputes, Military, Politics | Tags: China, Japan, Senkaku Islands, UN, US
As my fellow blogger Giandra already wrote on the 12th of May 2012 about the dispute over oil exploration in the South Chinese Sea between China and the Philippines (see What if the US takes a side?), China has opened another “fire” regarding a long-term territory claim in the East China Sea.
In China, demonstrations are a rare phenomenon. However, the images of the current riots and protests in China against Japan are indeed deliberately spread by the Chinese government. The censorship in China, which is implemented by the communist government, enables the government to strictly regulate all in and outgoing information including footages of the riots. China permitted these protests due to the message that is carried out. The protests are a result of a conflict between China and Japan about an uninhabited island group in the East-Chinese Sea. Months of tension regarding the islands’ dispute reached its peak when the governor of Tokyo, Shintaro Ishihara, claimed he wanted to buy the islands from a private Japanese owner. Shintaro Ishihara wanted to ensure that the Japanese government pays attention to China’s provocative actions in the area.
The Senkaku/Diaoyu islands in the East-Chinese Sea
Both countries claim to be the rightful owner of the island group, also known as the Diaoyu Islands by the Chinese and the Senkaku Islands by the Japanese. As is shown on the map, the islands are surrounded by China, Taiwan and Japan. This situation raises the question why such a major revolt has occurred regarding these tiny islands, which consist mostly of rock. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: June 14th, 2012 | Author: Tom van der Made | Filed under: Asia-Pacific, China, Geo-Political Disputes, International Relations, Military | Tags: ASEAN, Asian security conference, China, disputes, Leon Panetta, military focus, oil fields, power shift, Russia, Secretary of Defence, South China Sea, territorial, trade routs, US
The US is shifting its strategic focus from Europe and the Middle-East to Asia. Last week during a nine day trip to Asia, US Secretary of Defence Leon Panetta said, “Over the next few years we will increase the number and the size of our exercises in the Pacific. We will also increase and more widely distribute our port visits.” According to Panetta, by 2020 the focus will be shifted from today’s roughly 50/50 per cent split in military forces between the Pacific and the Atlantic to about a 60/40 split between the two oceans.
Leon Panetta, centre, poses with Japanese and Australian Defence ministers before the meeting of the Asia Security Summit in Singapore
Defence Secretary Leon Panetta wants to increase its military presence in Asia, both in numbers and bases. This despite the 2013 budget plan, according to the internet newspaper the Huffington post the Pentagon unveiled a cut of $487 billion in spending over the next decade by eliminating nearly 100,00 ground troops, delaying ships and trimming air squadrons in a bid to create a smaller, agile force with a new strategic focus. The new focus seems to be moving away from the ground wars of the past decade towards efforts to preserve stability in the Asia-Pacific region as well as the Middle East.
The US has restated that it will not take sides in territorial disputes. In other words, the US will not unilaterally back one country’s sovereignty claims over another’s. This is an issue that the parties directly concerned must solve. The US, however, has an interest in preventing territorial disputes from being settled by force. China’s fleet is being modernized and can also be assumed as one of the reason why the US is increasing its military force in the region to preserve stabilisation as to an extent they deter China from using its growing naval power, to assert sovereignty over islands occupied by other countries. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: June 8th, 2012 | Author: Tom van der Made | Filed under: Government, Governmental Policies, Human Rights, International Relations, Military, Nuclear Dispute | Tags: aid, devotion, food, future, human, Kim Il Sung, Kim Jong-il, Kim Jong-un, Korea, leader, Military, missle, nation, nuclear, poverty, power, rights, shortage, South, speech, starvation, suffering, supreme, times, US, war
A country contrasted by military power and poverty. A regime that is developing nuclear missiles at the expense of Koreans inhabitants who find themselves at the starvation level. In March 2011, the World Food Programme (WFP) estimated that 6 million North Koreans needed food aid and a third of children were chronically malnourished or underdeveloped. All as possible result from wrong priorities, as North Korea has been on edge ever since the Korean War, which many argue began 60 years ago and still hasn’t ended.
The Korean War from June 1950 to 1953 began when North Korea, led by the Kim Il Sung, invaded South Korea along the political border between both countries, known as the 38th parallel. Kim Il Sung wanted to unite Korea under communist rule. Because of this, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) supported the invasion, but was cautious of becoming physically involved due to the fact that World War II had only just ended. In response, the US tried to intervene due to their fear of communism spreading throughout Asia. Many lives were lost and the 38th parallel was re-established as the border between the two Koreas.
More recently, namely in December of last year, Kim Jong-un took over from his father Kim Jong-il as he passed away. Noteworthy is that new supreme leader of North Korea has yet to reach the age of 30 and differences between the former and current leader have already surfaced as various news outlets such as the New York Times and the CNN reported on some of these differences.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un giving his first public speech
Kim Jong-un spoke to his people on April 15th to mark the 100th birthday of the nation’s founder and grandfather, Kim Il Sung. However, the main message of Kim Jong-un is the same as his father’s, as Kim emphasized the importance of strengthening North Korea’s defences by placing the country’s ‘first, second and third’ priorities on military might. Nonetheless, the differences can be found in the fact that he spoke directly to his own people was new as Kim Jong-il only did this once back in 1992. Furthermore, Kim Jong-un expressed that he recognizes the present food shortage in North Korea, something his father and predecessor did not acknowledge.
While North Korea spends its money on its military, one third of its GDP according to SIPRI, weapons and tributes to its leaders, the regime still goes to the international community for aid. In October of last year, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed concern “that the acute humanitarian needs” of at least 3.5 million woman and children in North Korea would worsen because of food shortages. In North Korea, however, the military still comes first. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: May 12th, 2012 | Author: Tom van der Made | Filed under: Economics, Government, International Relations, Military, National economy | Tags: balance, budget, China, defence, economic recession, economy, expenditure, military expenses, priorities, US, world power
As the issue has been brought up in my previous blog, (India; one of the big boys), the current topic will further question the issue of military expenditure.
An illustration suggesting that military spending negatively affects the economy.
Victor Davis Hanson, writer for the National Review, has stated that in times of economic crisis, there are two general rules of budgetary reform, first, to scale back expenditures rather than raise taxes, and, second, to look at defence for some of the deepest cuts. The question is when nations decide not to reduce but further increase military spending during an economic crisis, what will be the impact on economic growth and development or other economic areas such as international debt and corruption?
Could the money invested in to military expenses be better off spent on other priorities? What are and should be the priorities in this time and day? These questions should concern everyone around the world. As the34th US President, Dwight David Eisenhower, former five-star General in the United States Army during World War II, mentioned in 1953, “This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its labourers, the genius of its scientists, and the hopes of its children”. Read the rest of this entry »