Chinese Junk

One must wonder as global instability increases-is there a future after a third world war?

Historians often point to a chain of smaller events that begin each world conflict. Russia’s incursion into Ukraine is most certainly some sort of flashpoint for a wider conflict as more nations pour arms into Ukrainian hands. And now we have the makings of a crisis between the United States and China over the Republic of Taiwan, the latter of which fell into our hands in ’52 after the Japanese relinquished control of it. President Truman wanted to have a hold on the island while we squabbled with China and Russia over the fate of Korea. We are hella lucky that the world was tired of total war.

This is one of those cases where we did not set out to “spread freedom” or “export democracy”. Anyone who still believes in that claptrap from US pols is a fucking idiot and no one should ever talk to you again. Nay, the Nationalist Kuomintang, after fleeing the mainland, killed about 140,000 people in 40 years who were not sufficiently Nationalist or had communist sympathy. And the US, as it does so often, turned a blind eye, more fearful of the mainland juggernaut than tiny Taiwan.

Nowadays, Taiwan is enjoying amazing economic growth, especially in the metal and chip trade. It’s a capitalist’s wet dream, and China, whose economy is currently faltering in a similar manner to ours, would like a taste. But we’ve signed multiple agreements to sell Taiwan arms, and we monitor the South China Sea for military incursions. Since 1979, we have pledged something resembling official military support to Taiwan, going just short of saying it will go to war against anyone who fucks with it. It’s not explicitly stated in the act governing our pledge, but Joe Biden in particular has been given voice to the notion that yes, we would protect Taiwan with American military force if necessary. I can only hope that was part of our strategic ambiguity with regards to Taiwan, however, White House staff needed to walk back his statements soon after. Could have been a blunder or two there. Taiwan has over a million under arms, but I do wonder if the small nation would be a bomber’s dream if the Chinese succeeded in establishing air power. But with US arms in force, that will probably be hard to achieve and a sea landing could be catastrophic.

China talks a big game, and I guess Biden is rising to the occasion to talk back, perhaps try to restore the hegemony we traditionally enjoy. But there’s flammable material everywhere, and we are striking too many flints at the scene of multiple potential conflagrations that could turn into the worst existential crisis the human race has ever seen. The stakes couldn’t be higher. I live near the SIGINT capital of the United States. I sincerely hope that Taiwan isn’t worth the bother for both sides and the status quo holds.



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