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China Extends Its Reach

Public Policy

Afghanistan has long been known as the “Graveyard of Empires.”

Conquerors like the Persians, Mongols, Brits and Russians all packed up and left — just as the U.S. has tried to do. Next in line to try its luck may be China.

President Xi Jinping is spending more than $50 billion in an economic corridor in Pakistan, Afghanistan’s neighbor. The highways and gas pipelines, designed to provide China an alternative land route to the high seas, also give it an interest in stabilizing the volatile region.

China’s money is a boon for Pakistan, allowing its leaders to ignore President Donald Trump’s pressure to get tougher on militant groups that operate on its porous border with Afghanistan. In a defiant statement rebuffing Trump, Pakistan’s foreign ministry cited China’s praise of its counterterrorism efforts.

But China isn’t just a rival power source to America — its rising influence in the region can help Washington too. The U.S. and China have already joined together to try and start peace talks with the Taliban.

While China has traditionally avoided the Great Game, its broadening array of foreign investments is making it a player. Afghanistan is a perilous place to start.

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Global Headlines

Xi’s battle-tested general | Chinese President Xi Jinping has appointed one of his few generals with combat  experience to a powerful new military post ahead of a sweeping Communist Party reshuffle, Keith Zhai reports. General Li Zuocheng — decorated after his unit racked up almost 300 kills during China’s 1979 war with Vietnam — appears set to play a crucial role in Xi’s efforts to secure his power into the next decade.

Kelly can’t control Trump | Although Trump now routinely tells aides to check with “The General” before signing off on proposals, new Chief of Staff John Kelly hasn’t yet figured out how to stop the president from following his worst instincts. Margaret Talev and Jennifer Jacobs take a closer look at the former Marine commander’s impact in his first weeks on the job — and the challenges ahead.

Qatar’s survival plan | As a Saudi-led blockade wears on, the tiny emirate is raising money in Asia and spending cash in the West — it’s bought U.S. fighter jets, Italian warships and the world’s most expensive soccer  player, Brazilian superstar Neymar. Peter Waldman and Mohammed Sergie explain how Qatar is using its time in isolation to become more self-reliant.

Trump’s Venezuelan debt squeeze | The U.S.’s next bid to pressure Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro to drop plans for constitutional changes may include sanctions targeting the country’s debt, according to people familiar with the talks. One potential measure would block trades of some dollar-notes sold by state-run oil giant, PDVSA. That could be worse than a default for bondholders because they would be stuck holding the notes through the tumult.

Wait – politics don’t matter? | The chief of Denmark’s largest private pension fund PFA says he rejects the current obsession with politics, arguing that politicians matter less and less to investors. His reason? The same globalization trends blamed for a resurgence in populism and nationalism in developed countries are making it easier for companies to move production elsewhere.

And finally…  “This is how empty a shelf is without foreigners” and “We will be poorer without diversity.” The stunt by Germany’s largest supermarket chain, Edeka, is making the rounds on social media today, serving as a reminder that liberal values persist: both Chancellor Angela Merkel and her main challenger, Martin Schulz, are seeking re-election next month on pro-immigration platforms.

Bloomberg


27 Comments on "China Extends Its Reach"

  1. Cloggie on Sat, 26th Aug 2017 5:33 am 

    One of the most interesting graphs I have ever seen, produced by a US scholar at the Dutch Groningen University (so it must be true.lol):

    https://cdn.theatlantic.com/static/mt/assets/business/Screen%20Shot%202012-06-20%20at%209.37.55%20AM.png

    Global GDP distribution throughout history.

    China:

    1820: 40%
    1950: 10%
    2008: 25%

    (numbers are somewhat arbitrary, is this nominal or PPP? But you can clearly discern expansion and contraction)

    Things can change rapidly and for the moment there is no end to Chinese economic expansion. There can be no doubt that in a decade China will be the most powerful nation on earth. The moment isn’t very far off that China will challenge US naval supremacy in the South China Sea.

    Exactly what the Australian leadership fears will happen:

    http://nationalinterest.org/feature/america-australias-dangerous-ally-11858

    History Australia:

    – Aboriginal country
    – Nieuw Holland/Nieuw Zeeland
    – British colony Australia/New Zealand
    – “independence” (read: member US empire)
    – New China as of 202x

    Australian Eurovision Songcontest contribution:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2EG_Jtw4OyU

    Bye-bye Australia.

  2. energy investor on Sat, 26th Aug 2017 6:06 pm 

    Cloggie,

    Don’t put us kiwis in the same class as Australians. It may come as news to you but in November 1840 the young Queen Victoria launched New Zealand as a separate colony and later we became the Dominion of NZ and are self governing.

    The Australians have been stealing our best IP, footie players, culinary dishes, race horses and singers ever since. And we have been beating them in rugby (which everyone knows is far more important than politics)….including last night when we trounced them yet again 🙂

    China is one of our three largest trading partners and we are glad they will need to conquer the Aussies before they can take a poke at us.

    As a guide to our intellectual superiority – we were not stupid enough to join the USA in the war against Saddam Hussein – we stick to peace keeping.

    Kiwis like Rewi Alley and Victor Percival have been friends with successive Chinese supremos from Mao to Xi.

    But how the Aussies handle their relationship with China remains to be seen, after all they are already planning to join the USA in a war against North Korea…whereas we Kiwis stopped fighting the North Koreans back in the 1950’s. lol

  3. Davy on Sat, 26th Aug 2017 7:34 pm 

    “China’s Minsky Moment Is Imminent”

    Authored by Kevin Smith, Tavi Costa, and Nils Jensen via Crescat Capital,
    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-08-06/chinas-minsky-moment-imminent

    “Crescat Capital’s Q2 letter to investors should be retitled “everything you wanted to know
    about the looming bursting of the world’s biggest credit bubble… but were afraid to
    ask…” Don’t say we didn’t warn you…History has proven that credit bubbles always burst. China by far is the biggest credit bubble in the world today. We layout the proof herein. There are many indicators signaling that the bursting of the China credit bubble is imminent, which we also enumerate. The bursting of the China credit bubble poses tremendous risk of global contagion because it coincides with record valuations for equities, real estate, and risky credit around the world.”

  4. Boat on Sat, 26th Aug 2017 8:19 pm 

    Davy,

    When China pops guys like Buffet will scoop up companies for 33 cents on the dollar. Remember GE in 2008? GE was struggling and Buffet bought 10 billion in stock. He just sold. Smithfield Foods in the future?

  5. Makati1 on Sat, 26th Aug 2017 11:27 pm 

    “Hidden in plain sight is an intimidating Chinese weapon that allows it to hold a quarter of the world’s population hostage without firing a single shot. While much attention has been given to the nation’s fearsome new military hardware, a formidable component in its arsenal has largely escaped notice: dams.

    With more than 87,000 dams and control of the Tibetan plateau, the source of ten major rivers which 2 billion people depend on, China possesses a weapon of mass destruction. With the flip of a switch, the Middle Kingdom can release hundreds of millions of gallons of water from its mega dams, causing catastrophic floods that would reshape entire ecosystems in countries downstream.”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-08-26/china-weaponizing-water

    There is more to the world situation than you will ever see in the US MSM propaganda.

  6. Cloggie on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 12:37 am 

    Assad about free Deir ez-Zor in eastern Syria:

    http://russia-insider.com/en/politics/putin-scores-geopolitical-checkmate-imminent-liberation-deir-ez-zor/ri20730

    Navies are yesterday’s news in a real war latest: Russia developed new hypersonic weapon, Zircon:

    http://russia-insider.com/en/politics/russias-new-hypersonic-missile-will-meddle-your-navy/ri20724

    Russia and Iran have defeated the West in Syria.

    This is good news since navies are essentially an attack force, bringing the war to the opponent. Well, in the 1940s perhaps, but no more. Hyper-sonic missile technology has made navies obsolete, a useles financial drain on resources and hence an asset of the enemy.

    The West about to go up in flames? Everybody all of a sudden talking about left-right armed conflict in the US. After Kunstler, Buchanan and Roger Stone, new voices talking about the possibility of CW-2.0.

    http://www.ramzpaul.com/2017/08/why-monuments-matter.html

    http://mobile.wnd.com/2017/08/country-rock-star-charlie-daniels-beware-of-tipping-point/

    The world is approaching a tipping point, not peak oil or CC, but major geopolitical realignments.

  7. Davy on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 6:09 am 

    “The world is approaching a tipping point, not peak oil or CC, but major geopolitical realignments.”

    Cloggie, won what in Syria? A destroyed dependent state? I hardly call years of dependency winning anything.
    Missiles don’t win wars clog. The US has plenty of missiles. If a country sinks a US Carrier the US will destroy in kind something maybe with a missile or maybe with stealth aircraft.

    Yea, geopolitical realignment is coming but not the kind you are envisioning. Besides alignment to what. We depend on each other and through those dependencies structures have been created. You don’t walk away from these are decouple them. They are set in stone until the break and when this world breaks it will be ugly. There won’t be the glorious Paris Berlin Moscow nonsense or the makat 1000 year Asian phoenix idiocy. Old anti-American men wrapped up in fantasies futures.

  8. Davy on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 6:15 am 

    makat, maybe the US should weaponize food. That is a quick way to bring Asia to its knees.

  9. Cloggie on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 6:23 am 

    Yea, geopolitical realignment is coming

    Stick your neck out and give us YOUR vision and alternative to “my” (Samuel Huntington + Charles de Gaulle + Putin + Kunstler really) Paris-Berlin-Moscow vs China duopoly and US dismembered?

    Chinese view Russia as a member of Europe:
    http://www.inpraiseofchina.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Map-China-New-Silk-Road-EAU.jpg

    CFR Jew Kupchan predicts that Europe will rise again:
    https://www.amazon.com/End-American-Era-Geopolitics-Twenty-first-ebook/dp/B000XUDGTY/ref=sr_1_1

    Buchanan: RIP USA 2025
    https://www.amazon.com/Suicide-Superpower-Will-America-Survive-ebook/dp/B004YD36HS/ref=sr_1_1

  10. Cloggie on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 6:31 am 

    Missiles don’t win wars clog.

    Nobody says they do.

    What I say is that missiles make navies obsolete in a real war between major powers. In a real war with China, the US navy will be forced to withdraw to Pearl Harbor.

    Forget your beloved phrase “US projecting power in the South China Sea”.

    You cannot project power from the bottom of the sea.

    https://blazepress.com/.image/t_share/MTI4OTkzNDQ3MDg3NDc5MjYy/17.jpg

  11. onlooker on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 6:36 am 

    Davy, the US and its Corporations pretty much already have weaponized the Food. What else do you call what Monsanto and others have done in creating the GMO food that requires patented seeds to be purchased at least every 2 years to grow certain crops and also monopolizing the sale of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. What else do you call widespread trading on food commodities arbritrarily affecting their market price. What else do you call the exporting of addictive foods like Sugar or Coffee. Or making Countries grow cash crops instead of focusing on food for their native population via Structural Adjustment programs.

  12. Davy on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 6:45 am 

    “What I say is that missiles make navies obsolete in a real war between major powers. In a real war with China, the US navy will be forced to withdraw to Pearl Harbor.”

    Missiles make missiles obsolete in a real war between major powers. Clog do you think escalation won’t continue with the use of missiles. Do you really think the US will lose a carrier and limp back to Peak Harbor like WWII days? You are one backward old fogie. In the meantime navies are more important than ever in the interim between all-out war or no war because it is all or nothing now in the 21st century. IMA, what do you think is going to happen to the global economy once the US and China go to war. It is game over for everyone in a Minsky moment of destroyed production and supply chains. Financial shutdown with shuttered ATM’s. It will be a cascade of failure. You and makat never think through those issues. These issues always disrupt the force of your agenda shattering your fantasies. This is why you ignore them.

    “Stick your neck out and give us YOUR vision”

    I am a doomer clog use your imagination in that direction instead of techno optimist Eurotard domination variety with a bio-polar Sino world with a basis of a destroyed North America. LMFAO. You and makat need to go on a date. We are all going to either decline and decay “as-is” or we are going to destroy “what-is” in global war of chaos. The “as-is” has a shelf life of one to two decades. Your renewable half-baked transition will extend things some. Thanks

  13. onlooker on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 6:47 am 

    That is true Clog what you said. Ships nowadays are sitting ducks.

  14. Davy on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 6:54 am 

    “Monsanto” is European now Onlooker. You are looking in the wrong place. Instead of an anti-American view point why not look at the globalistic dimension. We are both anti globalist and anti-corporate rape and pillage but don’t throw in the stupid anti-American agenda unless you acknowledge Europe, China and the corrupt turd world part. This is not only an American corporation issue or did the US take over the world yesterday and I missed something. The rest of the world is doing this onlooker. You know what I am talking about onlooker and it is related to makat’s stupid reference on China withholding water to its southern neighbors. The US could embargo food to the world and this would throw the world into turmoil. IMA, including the US.

  15. Cloggie on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 7:09 am 

    I am a doomer clog use your imagination in that direction instead of techno optimist Eurotard domination variety with a bio-polar Sino world with a basis of a destroyed North America. LMFAO. You and makat need to go on a date. We are all going to either decline and decay “as-is” or we are going to destroy “what-is” in global war of chaos. The “as-is” has a shelf life of one to two decades. Your renewable half-baked transition will extend things some. Thanks

    OK, as expected you refuse to shoot from the hip and give at least a plausible geopolitical scenario, one among many. Reason: you do not want to stick your neck out and make yourself vulnerable. Because deep in your heart you know that “my” vision is not entirely unrealistic and you can’t think of a counter vision, other than “we are all doomed”, whatever that may mean.

    Of course you understandable hate that vision, because the US won’t play a prominent role in that vision, so you try to ridicule it.

    Missiles make missiles obsolete in a real war between major powers. Clog do you think escalation won’t continue with the use of missiles.

    Now, they won’t. If China sinks a US navy vessel in the South China Sea, the US will seek retaliation, but won’t nuke a Chinese city, because China would retaliate at the same level and both countries would sink away in absolute chaos with tens of millions trying to flee big cities, with the result that both China and the US will cease to exist as functioning states. Not going to happen.

  16. onlooker on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 7:10 am 

    Okay, yes Davy, European companies are practically indistinguishable from their American counterparts. Not really meaning to single out just the US but that all the rich countries have the entire planet by the balls. Including China with their irresponsible debt and buying up land and such in Africa, South America etc. So yes, China is playing the bully game. As again all rich countries are. So I totally concede that Davy.

  17. Makati1 on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 7:12 am 

    Davy, that is exactly what will happen. China will use one of their carrier killers and take out a whole fleet. End of US “dominance of the Western Pacific. The US will retreat to the US West Coast, not Hawaii.

    Zip, bang and another carrier group gone. Even the US Navy realizes that they cannot get withing 1,000 miles of China in a real war. The US has ZERO defenses left against the new Russian and Chinese missiles. Everything the US has is obsolete. And the new stuff doesn’t work.

    The global economy will go to hell when the war starts and that is a good thing. Capitalism will finally be dead. The US will be hurting the most as it relies the most imports of necessities. Being able to grow corn and wheat will be meaningless if there is no way to ship it, even to the next county, and there is no one with $$$ to buy it. I bet you never considered that when you brag about the US being “food independent”. No money. No sale. No food. California is a long way from Missouri when the trains and trucks stop.

    BTW: The “war” may only last 24 hours. An EMP over Kansas will end the US in a flash. That is the problem of being a techno dependent country. Or it may be a missile salvo at 3AM taking out hundreds of sites in “indispensable” America. But, it will not be a land war where Americans go ashore in China. This is NOT the 20th century. This will be a missile war where oceans will not protect you.

    I hope it does not happen. I hope the US goes down before some idiot in DC starts it. ATMs are not my problem. That will only end one income stream. I’m prepared for that. It is America’s plastic card culture that will suffer most. And it should.

  18. Davy on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 7:22 am 

    “Now, they won’t. If China sinks a US navy vessel in the South China Sea, the US will seek retaliation, but won’t nuke a Chinese city, because China would retaliate at the same level and both countries would sink away in absolute chaos with tens of millions trying to flee big cities, with the result that both China and the US will cease to exist as functioning states. Not going to happen.”

    Who says? Where is it written? Clogism is about decisive clog decision of “will”, “no”, and “yes”. Do you see the pattern clog? You live in a binary clog world where you jump to conclusions and make decisions. You build the puzzle as you go making pieces fit nicely and always dovetailing with your Eurotardism.

  19. Makati1 on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 7:23 am 

    BTW: The Netherlands exports 2/3 as much food as the US by dollar value. (2014)

    http://www.worldatlas.com/articles/the-american-food-giant-the-largest-exporter-of-food-in-the-world.html

    The US exports less than 10% of the food in the world. I think the rest of the world would manage without the US exports. LOL

  20. Davy on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 7:28 am 

    “Of course you understandable hate that vision, because the US won’t play a prominent role in that vision, so you try to ridicule it.”

    Where did I say the US would not play a prominent role in decline and decay? It is everywhere. Where the inconvenient aspect of it all is for you anti-Americans is you want the decline and decay to be an American thing not and Asian and Euro thing. Typical fantasy thinking of old men who wish reality into being. The US is going down but it is not yet known who will be the “last man standing”. I know clog you hate that phrase because it hurts when I say it. Your Euroland is likely doomed too cloggie and you can’t stand it. Asia is doomed and makat can’t stand it. Two old men lost in a fantasy world of binary haze and praise. LMFAO

  21. Davy on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 7:34 am 

    Makat’s vision of the future. What a grandiose fantasy of unreality. No reason to dig into it just enjoy it like a movie trailer of the story of an isolated bitter old man sitting in a high rise in Makati, Philippines gazing over a huge urban landscape and lost in fantasy and imagination. Go write some sci-fi makat. Leave the real geopolitical discussions to those who embrace reality.

  22. Davy on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 7:37 am 

    clogster, look at what the US exports and get back to me. It is the basics of the food chain. In a world where food is all important to stability you can’t take that off the table. I know economics is not one of your better suits. Stick to AltE because you are pretty good with that. Otherwise you live in a fantasy world that ignores global financial, economic, military realities.

  23. Davy on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 7:40 am 

    Sorry clog, I though you posted the food comment. Should have known it was makat being ignorant. You are smarter than that..

  24. Cloggie on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 7:50 am 

    BTW: The Netherlands exports 2/3 as much food as the US by dollar value. (2014)

    That figure is good for Dutch pride but does not reflect real geopolitical power. The Dutch sell expensive high end food: milk, cheese, vegetables.

    The US exports “low end food”, mostly grain, but has considerable more geopolitical power, because you can feed so many with that around the world.

    To illustrate: one essential ingredient of Anglo victory over the Germans in WW2 was that Britain could prevent German occupation of Gibraltar, although the Spanish government were ideological (nationalist) brothers of the Germans. Britain could bribe the Spanish government with Canadian grain, something the Germans could not offer.

    http://tinyurl.com/yapzjoxf
    At the same time Franco continued to bargain with Hoare for Canadian wheat and British loans…

    https://www.theguardian.com/uk/2013/may/23/mi6-spain-200m-bribes-ww2

    Hence the Germans could unfortunately not occupy Gibraltar and seal off the Mediterranean, so the Anglos (serfs of Jewish interests and enemies of the white race) could creep into Europe via Italy first and the sad Anglo-Soviet colonization of Europe became a fact.

    Thank god we got rid of the Soviets and their Bolshevism and we will soon get rid of the Americans and their Jewish multicult, end good all good and we can kickstart European civilization again. Can’t wait.

  25. onlooker on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 7:52 am 

    Funny cause we have a thread going titled “Peak Empire” About what empire would follow the US. Well, I happen to fully agree with Davy, that together everyone is going down. US, Europe, Asia etc. The world is too intertwined commercially and financially. Too dependent on each other. The only prelude is the one we now are in. That is the rich countries are still enjoying a sense of affluent normalcy at the expense of the poor. countries. If we do not blow each other up, all the planet will be soon plunged into third world status and that my esteemed fellow posters is a recipe for disaster everywhere as no trade or humanitarian aid or anything will be forthcoming from anywhere else to bail out an area in acute crisis. Then we will realize how much into overshoot our species is

  26. Davy on Sun, 27th Aug 2017 7:58 am 

    I agree onlooker but the big question is how long will the status quo remain. What kind of post status quo will there be and what is its half-life? Then the question should be what is collapse and how bad. I see a stair step or a cliff. Clogs renewable revolution has changed my opinion of the onset of collapse but there is so much more involved to decline and decay besides energy. The other issue is can we get along long enough to allow any kind of future. It does not look good with the warmongering craziness that is the black hole of Washington DC.

  27. Makati1 on Mon, 28th Aug 2017 3:21 am 

    “Duterte seems to have understood, probably better than any other leader of the multipolar international order, the opportunity to counterbalance American influence in the region through Chinese investments. In addition, asking Moscow for some help in tackling the Mindanao terror crisis could be crucial in the future. All these factors seem to have greatly strengthened Duterte’s position and that of Manila on the Asian chessboard, granting a degree of independence that has not been enjoyed over the past decade in the Philippines.”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-08-27/embracing-multipolar-world-order-how-rodrigo-duterte-revolutionizing-philippines

    Better to befriend the dragon than be a serf to the eagle. LOL

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