“The Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act” Dennis Kwok


"We also explained in detail to the US lawmakers the kind of massive arrests and excessive use of force by our police force, which resulted in the apprehension of a large number of innocent civilians and left quite a number of protesters severely injured.

We also talked about the inhumane treatment to which some of the arrested protesters were allegedly subjected and the “white terror” imposed by the central government on certain business corporations such as Cathay Pacific Airways, where a number of employees, including pilots and a flight attendant, were sacked over incidents related to the anti-extradition bill protests.

Both Republican and Democratic members of the US Congress are pushing for the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act.

One of the most important provisions of the bill is that HKSAR government officials who are found suppressing Hong Kong’s democracy, human rights or citizens’ freedoms could have their assets in the US frozen and be denied entry to the US.

We agree that the passage of the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act through the US Congress will help in our citizens’ fight for democracy and in defending our human rights and freedoms."  Dennis Kwok


"Give me liberty or give me death?"  This sounds like that sentiment.

Would such an Act do anything material for Hong Kong?  Probably not.  Trump says that he hopes the CCP will settle the HK matter in a "humane way."  IOW he doesn't intend to do anything except use the HK crisis as leverage in his extended bargaining with China.

OTOH, this Act would do a lot for the conscience of the people of the US.  We need to do something that is actually selfless since we seem to have lost the knack for standing up for the "little people" in places like Yemen and Palestine against tyranny.

If such an Act were passed (probably over Trump's opposition) or maybe not since he claims to not give a damn about trade with China, then Canada should follow our lead in this.  British Columbia is packed full of mainland Chinese who have stashed their wealth there and who look forward to taking refuge in Victoria and/or Vancouver.

Palmerston, that mean old bastard, said that countries do not have friends.  They merely have interests.  Well, maybe so, but I would say that such an Act would be in our long term spiritual interest.  pl


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122 Responses to “The Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act” Dennis Kwok

  1. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Col. Lang
    This is another poorly thought piece of legislation from that strategy-free zone called Washington DC.
    How far will US go in her containment efforts against China? And to what end, a struggle to be waged for hundreds of years?

  2. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Col. Lang:
    Which spiritual interest are you referring to? Those of 17-th Century Puritans dominating US?

  3. turcopolier says:

    Babak, if you are Babak, No the Enlightenment concern for the rights of man.

  4. turcopolier says:

    How did Babak in Michigan become so pro communist? Not much of a Shia.

  5. CK says:

    But Yemen is supposedly an existential threat to the USA’s good friend KSA, surely the KSA is not communist? ( not all that much of a friend either unless one considers parasites to be friends )
    And Palestine is supposedly an existential threat to the USA’s great friend Israel. Israel is surely not a communist nation. ( also not that much of a friend unless one considers the Johnathan Pollard types to be friends.)
    Russia stopped being communist the instant that most successful agent in place Gorbachev handed over control to Yeltsin, and The PRC has most successfully become a rapacious capitalist nation once Mao and Mrs. departed this mortal coil.
    And even DPRNK is easing away from communism thanks to the great admiration the leader there has for the leader here.
    I do not see an interest for the USA in sticking its nose into yet another nations family disagreement. But then I haven’t seen much value accruing to the USA in its continual intrusion into other folks’ affairs since 1881.

  6. Babak Makkinejad says:

    The Rights of Man is fine but I cannot support its abuse as a wedge to beat China or anyone else on the head.

  7. Fred says:

    Thanks for posting the link to the text, it is an interesting piece of legislation.
    “an assessment of whether sensitive dual-use items subject to the export control laws of the United States are being—
    (A) transshipped through Hong Kong; and (B) used to develop— (i) the Sharp Eyes, Skynet, Integrated Joint Operations Platform, or other systems of mass surveillance and predictive policing”
    As a related topic shouldn’t the Congress also look into which US Tech companies are aiding China in the development of systems of “mass surveillance and predictive policing”?

  8. Fred says:

    I agree. Though what Trump is going to do is unpredictable. It would sure be the right thing for the Republic to make such a gesture. It won’t hurt him either politically nor in his trade negotiations with China.

  9. Babak Makkinejad says:

    What is the ultimate goal of US policy of Containing China? I fail to see anything in here except opposition to another hyperpower. In my opinion, Democracy and Freedom in China is centuries into the future, if at all. There could a revival of the ideas of Legalists in a few decades but barring that, Democratic China is a pipedream, both for Containment Strategists as well as for Chinese political activists and reformers and thinkers. A very sad case of the Persistence of a rather brutal past. (And I no longer see protection of US jobs as its core purpose.)
    I consider CPC as the Red Emperor: no ideology there just organized power structure to run that country, whose economy is supported by 300 million pigs – only an Act of Divine Intervention, a Miracle, could cause the Chinese to become Muslims, let alone Shia.
    If I am correct in my surmise, then the most productive way forward would be to learn to live with an un-free, un-just, and un-democratic, and cunning China for many more decades. But then that would be just like living with Saudi Arabia and her friends in Southern Persian Gulf. No country or combinations of countries, in the West, can hope to dominate China at acceptable costs. That is why Kwak’s ideas are stupid.

  10. Pwalden says:

    Maybe the democratically-elected U.S.government should concern itself more with the long-term, or even short-term, material interests of its own people, many of whom are apparently sinking beneath the waves of debt, ill health, addiction and general decline in life expectancy and life chances.
    While any U.S. denunciation of the Chinese government over events in Hong Kong is unlikely to affect outcomes there, it will no doubt worsen US-China relations. But that is a feature, not a bug.
    Of course, as you say, such a denunciation could be an important distraction to cheer up Americans and to reinforce the Enlightenment myth that Anglo-American values are universal despite plenty of evidence to the contrary.

  11. Thirdeye says:

    British Columbia is packed full of mainland Chinese who have stashed their wealth there and who look forward to taking refuge in Victoria and/or Vancouver.

    Indeed, and it causes a lot of resentment towards Chinese that is similar to that towards the mainlanders in Hong Kong. The wealth-parking and haven-seeking in both places has driven asset inflation that has affected the locals badly, with the exception of a fortunate few. This has happened at the same time that HK has lost one of its engines of true economic growth, its formerly indispensable role as a trade and financial portal for China. The HK protests seem driven mainly by unfocused resentment of all things mainland and lacking in coherent goals. HK’s lack of an extradition treaty with the mainland is one incentive for wealthy mainlanders, especially those who might have been shady in acquiring their wealth, to seek a haven in HK.

  12. Jack says:

    I agree with you.
    IMO, CCP is going to crackdown violently on the people of HK who are the modern equivalent of Patrick Henry. This is an example of their resolve. Volunteer drivers rescuing trapped protestors.
    The US Congress needs to stand with the good people of HK in their hour of need. There should be consequences for CCP violence. Sanctions on the CCP politburo who have much of their wealth stashed in the west should be an immediate response. The other should be ending US investment in CCP linked entities and preventing the listing of Chinese companies on US exchanges unless they fully comply with accounting and transparency standards that are required of US companies. The US Congress should also recognize Taiwan as an independent country as CCP has reneged on “One Country Two Systems”. There can be no “deal” with CCP any longer as they have time and again thumbed their noses before the ink has even dried in their previous agreements including their inclusion in WTO. The time has come to destroy the authoritarian CCP and enable the Chinese people to determine their own destiny.
    Former communist countries get the nature of the CCP. IMO, this time the global response to CCP violence will not be benign. CCP cash will not be able to easily buy public opinion this time despite the propaganda of the fifth column.
    Trump must know that a strong dollar is the worst situation for CCP with trillions in dollar liabilities. There are reports that some Chinese cities are now rationing meat as pork prices rocket up.
    When my grandkids say they are scrutinizing all products they purchase to make sure they’re not Made in China, I know that sentiment is changing at the margin.

  13. turcopolier says:

    “the long-term, or even short-term, material interests of its own people, many of whom are apparently sinking beneath the waves of debt, ill health, addiction and general decline in life expectancy and life chances.” marxist agitprop. You should move to the peoples’ paradise and then you can stand in line at COSTCO stores.

  14. turcopolier says:

    Incredible! Does this attitude have anything to do with US policy toward Iran?

  15. turcopolier says:

    Ah, I was rightt. This is about Iran for you.

  16. turcopolier says:

    I can understand why you don’t care about TROM. Humans have no inalienable rights in Iran. Onle god has thr Right and it is for men to obey the Khawza to seek salvation.

  17. turcopolier says:

    F—k the Saudis and the camels they would rather screw than ride. You, sir are a communist sympathizer.

  18. Jack says:

    US policy should not be to “Contain China”. It should be to destroy the totalitarian CCP.

  19. JJackson says:

    Yemen and Palestine against Communist tyranny?
    I was not aware that Israel or the Gulfies were Communists.

  20. turcopolier says:

    What an anti-colonial snob you are! Try not to be overcome by your post-colonial angst. Tyranny is tyranny, whether it be that of Britain, the asshole salafists or the communists.

  21. Peter C says:

    Supporting the Act implies support for the HK protestors. Are you sure you want to do that? Here is a video that appears to show a group of them terorizing some older passengers on a subway train:

  22. JJackson says:

    I know you don’t like communists, or me very much, but I am still at a loss to see how either have anything to do with what is currently going on Yemen or Palestine.

  23. J says:

    Israel was founded by Bolsheviks, the Israeli state and government were modeled after the CCCP, their communities the Kibbutz were modeled on the Soviet Communes. If it walks like a Communist, flaps it mug like a Communist, it must be a Communist.
    Those same Israeli Bolsheviks that founded the state of Israel sold out their fellow European Jews in bargaining with Hitler and his Nazis for safe passage for themselves and their personal wealth and riches to Palestine. It is one of those inconvenient truths that the Israeli government cringes at when the subject is brought up. So yes the Colonel was right in calling the Israelis Communists. Look at the way they operate today, they’re still Communist in word and action.

  24. Babak Makkinejad says:

    And replace it with what? And spare me Japan’s case: a democratic constitution grafted by the Victor onto the Meiji Constitution. Japan is semi-sovereign and if and when US decamps, will she remain like she is today or revert back?

  25. Babak Makkinejad says:

    I oppose the abuse of the ideas and ideals of the Enlightenment Tradition, Liberty, Respresentative Government, and the Rule of Law to attack sovereign states.

  26. Babak Makkinejad says:

    UK, during the Constitutional Movement in Iran in 1904-1905, aided the revolutionaries and stood by the principles of the Self-Rule and Governance.
    USA never did so in Iran but she always talked a good talk.

  27. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Are you mad? Do you want World War III, is that why you advocate independent Taiwan?

  28. Pacifica Advocate says:

    It’s not our country, so it’s none of our business.

  29. blue peacock says:

    Isn’t the Iranian theocracy attempting to be the beacon for all Muslims as you have said in the past? Why then have they ignored the plight of 2+ million Muslim Uighurs who have been sent to concentration camps in Xinjiang for re-education by the Chinese communists? Realpolitik crushing principles? Hypocrisy?

  30. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Col. Lang
    Hawza, in Iran, in Iraq, and elsewhere among the Shia has the virtue of providing a center of religious authority and thus acts as a check against the woa check against the worst impulses of religious anarchy, intances of which currently afflict Sunni Islam. The substantive debate is about Freedom in Islam. Which, just like in Judaism, lacks it. How can one amalgamate the Muslim notion of man being a Slave of God with the concept of the a Free Believer. No one, to my knowledge, has attempted to graft the ideas of Western Liberty – themselves derived from Roman Law, Germanic Tribes, and Christianity, organically into Islam. Appeals to the Enlightenment Tradition and its ideas and ideals lack utility as Turks, Arabs, Iranians, Pakistanis et ., are not Christian Europeans.

  31. Unhinged Citizen says:

    The Communist Part of China is a semi-criminal authoritarian regime that has hijacked 1.3 billion souls.
    It does not need to be contained, but cauterized from this planet. And hitting their financial interests in British Columbia would be a welcome move here by any average, working Canadian, who have been priced right out of existence by billion of grey-market dollars flowing into the province from China.
    Money which was obtained from the massive wealth transfer that stripped out US industry among others.

  32. different clue says:

    If it can reduce or eliminate the trading relationship between China and America, that can be a good thing if used as an opportunity to re-develop a multi-functional national-survival economy within America.
    If it can lead to the destruction of the Free Trade Order all over the world, that is an even better thing.

  33. doug says:

    China’s political and economic structure is quite different from that of the former USSR, Cuba, and NorKo. The Communist Party retains absolute control but has been fairly successful at unleashing the power of markets, enterprise, and the ability of people to get rich from their own work. This has disconcerted some classic Marxists who view China as Communist in name only. However, state control is absolute in major areas. It’s a strange, but powerful and potentially dangerous country. Here’s one Marxist’s view.

  34. Walter says:

    Col, you R wrong on this one. The Chinese people are loving China, they are very nationalistic and proud of China. They, unlike Americans, are willing to sacrifice and endure hardship to “win” this trade war. If any Americannis inconvenienced by the trade war (farmers) they will scream and turn on Trump. Chinese love Xi. The HK protestors are many young people who are pissed off because they live in closets because HK has the most expensive real estate on earth and they cannot afford anything. American politicians are idiots and immoral. We should be happy that China is doing well and not regard every competitor as an enemy. The Chinese people are great people ; hard working capitalists. HK is on the way out. Have you visited China? It is far from communist. Our own government and media is far more dangerous to us than the Chinese.

  35. Jack says:

    Australian 60 Minutes show on the protests in HK.
    US media have not got the scale of these protests by the youth in HK. They don’t want to be under the jackboot of the CCP. It is such a shame that so many here are turning their backs on these courageous young people fighting for freedom from communist tyranny.
    Reuters got a recording of HK’s Beijing appointed Chief Executive Carrie Lam speaking to a business group recently.

    Lam noted, however, that she had few options once an issue had been elevated “to a national level,” a reference to the leadership in Beijing, “to a sort of sovereignty and security level, let alone in the midst of this sort of unprecedented tension between the two big economies in the world.”
    In such a situation, she added, “the room, the political room for the chief executive who, unfortunately, has to serve two masters by constitution, that is the central people’s government and the people of Hong Kong, that political room for maneuvering is very, very, very limited.”


  36. Mightypeon says:

    From what I get the Russians are busy taking notes, both in terms of protest tactics, in terms of counterportest tactics and in terms of media managing strategy.
    Internally, PRC is utilizing that mainlanders and Hong Kongers dont get along that well, and that Hong Kongers have a history of being quite arrogant to mainlanders, in a way to bolster legitimicy at home.
    The informed hot take in Russia is that the PRC will crush Hong Kong if it must, but would prefer to do so without destroying much real estate. There are also some concerns that Beijing overplays the American regime change angle in their communications with Russia, and underplays legitimate concerns and grievances of the protestors (Russians would, as a rule, prefer not to be extradicatable to mainland China, as PRC laws on basically everything tend towards the more severe even from a Russian standpoint). Ironically, the same was true the other way round during Maidan.
    Russia is still going to back China because the PRC matters to Russia and Hong Kong fundamentally does not.
    As far to how Russia sees China and the threat emmanating from it:
    1: The Chinese are pretty cunning, have a long history (with sometimes gratitious cruelty and no, they cannot blame the mongols for becomning like that), and if they would go democratic it could well be Machete democracy. This is not going to change.
    2: Chinas government is quite predictable, and plays mostly the same game as Russias which makes it even more predictable from Russias pov. The Russians are very fond of predictable actors.
    3: China is, at the moment, unable to effectively vasallize either North Korea, Mongolia, various lesser (Kazakhstan is something else, and maintaining influence there is a first priority Russian task) Central Asian stans. It has issues with maintaining control over Xinjiang, Tibet and Honkong. It has not annexed Taiwan yet. Russian planners do not forsee any Chinese moves counter to 1rst priority Russian interests before China succesfully completeles the afromentioned tasks. Russian planners also believe that Chinas fullfillment of these tasks, especially annexing Taiwan, would massively increase tensions between the US and China. This could potentially put Moscow in the position of having better relations to Washington and Beijing then both have to each other (this nice position is currently in Beijings hands) and could, once this happen, negotiate with the USA on considerably better terms.

  37. David Martin says:

    AWESOME!!!! Nicely Explained… Thanks you guys!

  38. CK says:

    I did not see any value in Marx, Lenin, Engels or Trotsky however they were neither Russian nor Chinese. I see that we are in agreement on the Saudis. It is good to have a handy label to affix to others, non-interventionist would be my preferred pigeon hole.

  39. turcopolier says:

    This is a different Walter than the old one.


    And what do you propose Iranians do in the middle of an Economic War? Pursue a suicidal policy of confronting China on the issue of Sunni Muslim citizens of the People’s Republic of China?
    Why don’t the 1 billion Sunni Muslims do something about it?
    Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Moroco, Algeria exert themselves on the behalf of fellow Sunnis in Kashmir, and in Shin-Kiang?

  41. turcopolier says:

    Not a label. It is a descriptor.

  42. turcopolier says:

    Is the SAG “semi-sovereign” because it is allied to Iran and Russia?

  43. turcopolier says:

    Ah, yes, First you misquote someone and then comment on that. The references to yemen and Palestine are exaples of the American prople having lost the ability to discern tyranny when it is evident. thgere are many other such examples.

  44. turcopolier says:

    Are there any of our foreign wars that we were justified in? How about the Civil War in which the North invaded and conquered the South? And spare the pious dogma about slavery, which was already a doomed institution at the time of the Northern aggression.

  45. turcopolier says:

    You and I have always been in agreement in re the nature of Islam. Islam is like many other religions in that it denies freedom of thought to members of all sects, including whichever one a particular Muslim happens to belong to.


    No. Germany is.


    So, if I understand you correctly, you are complaining that the wily & crafty Chinese took advantage of your own government’s policies in Canada – the policies that put money & finance above everything else and in many parts of Canada made the Canadians a minority in their own country?
    And you are truly reflecting your nome de plume – Unhinged – when you speak of “cauterization” of 1.2 billion people; just how many tens of millions of Chinese are to die for this cauterization to take place.
    You guys in Canada have a good country – those who live in glass houses should not throw stones.


    Not freedom of thought in itself – rather freedom of open expression of that thought – and not just on the subject of Islam itself or her laws and regulations.
    In Turkey, certain comments about Turkic nationalism will get one murdered.
    In the West there is a nexus of ideas and practices that developed over centuries – rooted in the soil of Europe – which – in my opinion – is impossible to transplant else where.
    We have the rather sorry empirical evidence of the last 200 years – the only non-Western country which comes as a second to Western Diocletian states is the Russian Federation.

  49. Jack says:

    Appeasement is why we are here. Previous administrations and Congresses didn’t say or do anything as the CCP flouted every written agreement they made. They’ve thumbed their nose at every adverse WTO ruling despite Clinton giving them Most Favored Nation status and agreeing that they could be labeled a “developing country” at the WTO. We’re here at the tariff war precisely because Xi and the CCP politburo reneged on the deal that Lighthizer and Liu He negotiated over months. A deal that would have ended as Diego Parrilla called their “beggar thy neighbor benefits”.
    CCP agreed to “One Country, Two Systems”. We see clearly what has happened in HK that they never had any intention to fulfill their agreement. It was just a ploy. Like their WTO ploy and their ploy of a Billion consumer Market. It was all deception. Their objective should be clear to even the most casual observer. They’ve played us and in the short-term greed of personal wealth for our elites the Deplorables and the country have been sold down the river.
    Are we to stay silent in the face of ruthless oppression by the totalitarian CCP? Are we going to abandon the people of HK who are showing immense courage in the face of violence from the CCP? Are we going to abandon the democratic and pluralistic society the Taiwanese have built showing that the Chinese people can build and sustain open and free societies? All so that we don’t want to hurt the sensibilities of the totalitarian CCP who have shown they don’t care about the sensibilities of others?
    I argue that the CCP is weak. Their financial system is a house of cards. And they don’t have the support domestically among the Chinese people as their fifth column here claim. The trade war is hurting them. Supply chains are reorienting. Food prices and shortages are escalating. Now is the time to stand up to their authoritarianism by ratcheting up the financial pressure. Sanctioning the CCP politburo and other top officials who have most of their wealth in the West. Ending US financing of CCP linked entities. Decoupling our banking system from theirs. And a clear warning that violent repression in HK has consequences including the recognition of Taiwan. CCP appeasement must end. We must recognize that CCP has been and continues to be our enemy. Every action of theirs over the past two decades shows they consider us their enemy. If we don’t act now we can be sure our children will have to fight a military war in the future when the CCP is even stronger.

  50. Jack says:

    Dream on while drinking the koolaid!

    Xi’s speech on combat spirit & five whatever 五个凡是 again shows he wants a disciplined, ideologically pure, almighty Leninist party, which will not mesh well with his lesser goals of economic reforms and having better relations with the West. Maybe he gave up on the two already

  51. I’ve met a fair few Chinese from Hong Kong. Most civilised people you could hope to meet. The videos coming out right now are different, as I suppose one would expect.
    One could argue that for us to implant English administrative practices and English attitudes in a patch of Chinese land we were only holding on a lease was foolish, even if those characteristics didn’t go that deep for many. Perhaps some of the trouble is due to that, as the Chinese further incorporate Hong Kong into their radically different system.

  52. JJackson says:

    I did not misquote you. If you had said “Yemen and Palestine against tyranny” then it would have made perfect sense and I would not have asked the question. Bibi and MBS are tyrants but a million miles away from being communist. HK is a different matter they have a democratic tradition, from their time as a UK colony, and the communist mainland is trying to chip away at the one country two systems arrangement and they are fighting back. I am not sure it will end well for them as tyranical regimes tend to be fairly brutal in crushing dissent.

  53. JJackson says:

    Are we talking about Israel today under Bibi, who might fit the Facist tyrant model, or the Israel of the days when their Labour party used to form the government? These are two very different Israels. I can not accept they are still communist in any way. I am no fan of communism, facism or any system based on a religious ideology which leads to tyrany I just want to be clear which type of tyrany we are talking about rather than calling all tyranies communism.

  54. Fred says:

    “… interests of its own people, many of whom are apparently sinking beneath the waves of debt, ill health, addiction and general decline in life expectancy and life chances.”
    Like Detroit, which elected a ‘cough, cough’ person of color to be Mayor, proving diversity is their strength. That ‘person of color’ has done such a great job that Squad member Tlaib can spend her time in Congress devoting attention to the issues in the West Bank and Gaza rather than downtown or downriver. If only Barack had done something for Michigan in his eight years in office, because you know what Trump has done has had zero impact on the Michigan economy. Now if only GM would open some more plants in China, like they did when lobbyist Debbie Dingell was working for them, I’m sure the people of Michigan would be trememdously better off. The people in Ohio would love it too. Just ask them about Lordstown; or maybe we should ask Mary Berra about that one.
    BTW where does all that fentanyl come from? Perhaps we should put a stop to that traffic so we can eliminate the problem of ‘addiction and decline in life expectancy”.

  55. turcopolier says:

    Wha is the difference between Syria’s relationship to Iran and Germany’s relationship to the US?

  56. turcopolier says:

    I inadvertently used the word “Communist” in the post with regard to Israel and Yemen. Sloppy. Sorry. What was intended was a reference to ANY tyranny.


    Iran did not defeat SAR in war and then impose her political will on her.

  58. turcopolier says:

    you don’t think Germany’s participation in NATO is voluntary?


    Join US Military and be ready to be dropped in Tai Pei in the event of war.
    Or ask your male relatives to enlist.

  60. turcopolier says:

    Incomprehensible nonsense.


    I will list the names of sovereign states – that is, those that can stand on their own two feet and make independent decisions – that I know of:
    the United States of America
    the United Kingdom
    the Russian Federation,
    the People’s Republic of China
    the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
    the Islamic Republic of Iran
    the Indian Union
    the Socialist Republic of Vietnam
    the Kingdom of Sweden
    the Confederation of Helvetia

  62. b says:

    The recent NYT op-ed by Joshua Wong, a NED financed rabble rouser in Hong Kong, shows that the U.S. instigate color revolution attempt is designed to push the other crazy anti-China law through Congress.
    Sanction Chines officials for administrating a Chinese city? In other countries such is called lunacy.


    I wrote many comments – to which one do you refer as incomprehensible?

  64. turcopolier says:

    “Join US Military and be ready to be dropped in Tai Pei in the event of war. Or ask your male relatives to enlist.” means what?

  65. turcopolier says:

    “Such is lunacy” does Germany not sanction Russia for its actions in the Crimea?

  66. Babak Makkinejad says:

    I am fed up when people use the word “appeasment”. Appeasement, in my opinion, is the epitome of Statesmanship and Diplomacy. Jack wants war.

  67. Colonel – this comment is far from the topic of Hong Kong. Please ignore it if it is an intrusion here; but my attention was immediately caught by one word –
    “Voluntary”. That is the essence of NATO and of any closer alliance that is contained within it. “Voluntary”. Any country that doesn’t want to be in NATO, or only wants to be half in it, can act as it pleases. That has been seen in practice with the French and in other cases. That also applies to other alliances or co-operative ventures with the USA, the most dramatic instance of that being the UK, one of America’s closest allies, declining to engage in the Vietnam War.
    In addition NATO takes the defence capabilities of the constituent partners and makes such use of those as is possible. I have seen as an example given for this that the UK’s wish to focus on defending sea lanes was accommodated within the NATO structure. It is therefore not only a voluntary set of alliances, it is a flexible one.
    The current European trend is towards a European defence alliance outside NATO, and within the EU 27/28. This burgeoning alliance cannot by its nature be “voluntary” – any country in such an alliance will be permanently locked in by its membership of the EU.
    In addition the tendency will be for the European Alliance that is now forming outside NATO to prescribe what its constituent members must do. This is in direct contrast with that more flexible NATO approach mentioned above that takes what its members want to do and integrates that into a common defence.
    The engine of this separate alliance outside NATO, that is, the pressure on the countries of the 27/28 to be incorporated in such an alliance, comes from joint European defence projects. No European country wishes to be excluded from such projects and the pressure from defence contractors to be included must be strong. I’ve seen it suggested, and I believe it to the the case, that this is the reason for HMG under Mrs May pushing ahead fast with UK/EU defence integration outside NATO over the last couple of years even while, at least ostensibly, seeking to distance the UK from the EU during that time.
    All that from that single word “voluntary”. But that is a word that means freedom, Colonel. The freedom of any country within that great defensive alliance that is NATO to participate if it pleases and how it pleases. To subordinate one’s country, and that for commercial reasons rather than reasons of common defence, to another type of alliance, an alliance that locks its members in rather than leaves them free to be in or out, is what the 27/28 countries of the EU are heading for. Is that truly in their interests, or in the interests of our common defence?

  68. blue peacock says:

    The “NED financed rabble rouser” is willing to risk his life. How about you?
    Are you willing to move to China and live under the CCP utopia? Or are you just another armchair Maoist enjoying the freedom of expression available in Germany to criticize & denigrate those that demand it in CCP land where it does not exist?

  69. walrus says:

    I am concerned that postings here are arguing from a western democratic standpoint without understanding the way the Chinese culture is built. From that, wrong assumptions are made.
    Firstly, as I have said before, Chinese culture recognises no authority outside the extended family except that which can be applied by force or that which benevolently supplies benefits to those who accept it. They will accept any form of Government at all provided it allows the family to survive.
    The second thing is that the Chinese are natural businessmen and traders. They will do literally anything to make a dollar.
    For example, at least one Chinese baby food company decided to take the cheap way out of complying with formula protein standards – they added melamine, a toxic compound, to their product to trick laboratory tests into showing that the product met the required standards. About 300,000 babies were affected.
    Do you now understand what the average Chinese is capable of doing????????
    Taking my items one and two together – no respect for authority and a complete lack of shame, I believe I can make some observations:
    – modern technological society and infrastructure requires high levels of cooperation and trust between participants -the CCP provides a framework for this, right up to a bullet behind the ear for not getting with the program.
    Consider for example, how you run an energy grid composed of multiple independent power stations in China, where every plant manager is a potential cheating entrepreneur, without the strongest form of central authority? It’s not going to happen.
    The only possible conclusion is that the Chinese Communist party rules China because it is strong, organised and has delivered massive material increases in standards of living to the majority, period. The CCP did not snuff out some gorgeous Jeffersonian democracy when it came to power, it took power from a gang of corrupt thieves who were only interested in democracy as far as it convinced suckers in the USA to support it.
    So now lets think what happens if the neocon dream actually happened and the CCP collapsed overnight, leaving a vacuum. Is that vacuum going to be immediately filled by a horde of Chinese democrats who have been secretly yearning for multi party elections, caucuses and secret ballots all these years? No way!
    The CCP collapse would be followed by a kleptocratic tidal wave that would make the Russian experience under Yeltsin look tame. It would be every man for himself and the country, lacking strong central authority would split along ethnic, geographical and regional lines. The Republics of Taiwan and now potentially Hong Kong, being examples.
    So why should we care? Remember my first two points? No respect for authority and no shame in making a buck? Here’s a hint:
    If China implodes, the Chinese will flood the world with every form of illegal drug known to man and then start inventing new ones. Unfettered Chinese technology will produce an export strange weapons that even William Gibson in his latest science fiction hasn’t dreamt of. Every sort of device – miniature killer robots, hacking tools, genetically engineered drugs, steroids, body implants and then there are the service industries, organ harvesting and transplants for example.
    If the CCP implodes we will look back fondly on the days when all they supplied was fake Louis Vuitton handbags.
    So now look at Hong Kong from what I would like to believe is a more balanced perspective; the CCP cannot tolerate open rebellion by Hong Kong because it sets a dangerous precedent. The rebellion is going to be suppressed. This is going to end in tragedy for the participants and their families.
    I am concerned that our efforts to support and possibly foment the rebellion will actually ensure its failure because the CCP will want to send us a direct message about our interference as well as make an example of Hong Kong to the rest of China. We don’t give a damn about the people of Hong Kong anyway. We are just using them to rile China.

  70. blue peacock says:

    You are making an assumption that the CCP will initiate war if the US recognizes Taiwan. That need not be the case. Unless they believe in suicide.
    Jack is making a coherent case on why the US cannot make any deal with the CCP as it is not worth the paper it is written on and why the US should engage more forcefully to target the finances of the top CCP officials.
    I agree with him and this message is starting to resonate with more & more Americans. If we don’t take down the CCP now we’ll have to fight a more destructive military war later.

  71. Unhinged Citizen says:

    The punitive measures in B.C. would only be a bonus. Governments are slow to react to threats, and since 2018, there is the equivalent of a head tax on Chinese money being park inside B.C.
    Those 1.2 billion people are not members of the Communist Chinese Party nor would they sacrifice their lives for this regime. The numerous Chinese whom I know admit they do not expect justice and fairness living under the regime.

  72. Babak, might I ask – is that the old Babak I used to have a set to over the Falklands and such matters with? The styles very different. Less thoughtful, sharper.
    Maybe you’ve taken this pilgrim’s journey and just sharpened up your views. Maybe you’re a different Babak. Which is it?

  73. Jack says:

    Jack wants the destruction of CCP now to avoid inevitable military conflict in the future. Don’t project.

  74. Jack says:

    This is the future that Babak and b promote.
    Get your goosestep in order!

  75. turcopolier says:

    You think I am a neocon?

  76. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Same one, less patient.
    A dragon was sleeping in Asia. She was rather rudely awakened by being trampled upon, and much later, was fed by the jobs of the United States. Now everyone is afraid and complaining.

  77. Babak Makkinejad says:

    You guys fed China and used her as an ally against USSR. Now she is eating your lunch and all of a sudden you have found religion; Liberty, Human Rights etc. You would be more credible if you applied the same standard to Saudi Arabia.

  78. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Jack has not made any case against China or CPC based on alleged violations of any treaty with the US. Which one has been broken by China?

  79. Babak Makkinejad says:

    If Taiwan declares declared independence, China will invade Taiwan.
    You want to take down CCP, which US city are you willing to give up?

  80. Babak Makkinejad says:

    CCP is the best government that China has had in 2500 years. Likewise, the Russian Federation is the best government that Russians have experienced since Yaroslavl the Wise. Ditto for Islamic Republic of Iran. You do not like all 3. I suggest you have real issues inside of yourself.

  81. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Go to the Widow Maker and see if you will like her better.

  82. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Very good. I agree.
    But like Rhett told Scarlett: “men like war…”

  83. walrus says:

    Col. Lang, a Neocon? Of course not! What I am trying to explain is that if you get what you want, which I presume is for the CCP to vanish, you may not like what replaces it.
    Hong Kong has been taught democracy by the British and it sort of works there provided you are connected, but HK is not, I think, China.
    Am I right that You scoff at the idea that Islamists will ever embrace democracy? Simply add the Chinese to the list.

  84. catherine says:

    China Ex-Food and Drug Chief Executed
    The Associated Press
    Tuesday, July 10, 2007; 2:24 AM
    BEIJING — China on Tuesday executed the former head of its food and drug watchdog who had become a symbol of the country’s wide-ranging problems on product safety.
    Zheng Xiaoyu’s execution was confirmed by state television and the official Xinhua News Agency
    Zheng was sentenced to death in May for taking bribes to approve an antibiotic blamed for at least 10 deaths and other substandard medicines. Cao was given a death sentence last month with a two-year reprieve for accepting bribes and dereliction of duty.
    Such suspended death sentences usually are commuted to life in prison if the convict is deemed to have reformed”

  85. Fred says:

    They are already killing 60,000 Americans a year with fentanyl. What do you suggest we do, pay another decades worth of extortion in the hope the central government puts a stop to it?

  86. different clue says:

    The major countries of the world are currently in a “no immigrants, please” frame of mood. But Hong Kongers are considered to be high-quality people of high-quality culture and talents. If twenty or so most-major countries decided to all admit a bunch of Hong Kongers who see no future for themselves under the inevitable One Country One System future, could the ones and their families who have no future ( or even acceptable present any more) there all be rescued and removed to more hopeful places?
    And the Hong Kongers who accept the One Country One System future could all stay.
    Here is an example of the kind of event which makes people feel they have to do and say something, even knowing it will do no good.
    Only an assisted voluntary evacuation will spare the targets of this sort of thing from more of this sort of thing. Because as Walrus points out, the China authorities will either wear out and wear down the uprising, or they will crush, smash and exterminate it. And misleading the Hong Kongers to think we even can do anything to actually save them in place would implicate us in misleading them the way we mislead the 1956 Hungarians into thinking we would materially assist and support their uprising.
    But rescuing those Hong Kongers who see “somewhere else” as the only hope of a future is something we can do. ( Unless the ChiCom regime would shoot down or torpedo every rescue vehicle. In which case, I have no ideas).
    And if doing that enraged the ChiCom regime into severing all economic contact with the US, that would set us free from that particular part of the Forced International Free Trade-Rape system. If it lead to the destruction of International Free Trade-Rape all over the world, that would be a very major achievement. Naturally , Trade Creeps and Free Trade-Rape supporters would be upset over such an outcome.

  87. It seems everyone is a Chickenhawk now.

  88. Pacifica Advocate says:

    Slavery was alive and spreading rapidly at the time of the Civil War.
    I’ll agree that WWII was The Good War, but we wouldn’t’ve had to fight it if we had stayed out of WWI.
    The Indian Wars were a disgrace, and none of the others should have happened.

  89. jd hawkins says:

    “Our own government and media is far more dangerous to us than the Chinese”.
    An absolute truth!

  90. b says:

    Joshua Wong does not risk his life. He knows very well that nothing can happen to him but maybe a few weeks in jail followed by U.S. green card and a free ride into Yale.

  91. b says:

    It does and it is stupid to do so.

  92. CK says:

    According to the dictionary, the two are the same thing,
    https://www.dictionary.com/browse/label . Labelling one a “commie sypm” 60 years ago was almost as efficient as labelling one a racist last year.

  93. Babak Makkinejad says:

    The English taught Hong Kong the Rule of Law and not Democracy. For most of its existence, it was a Crown Tyranny.

  94. turcopolier says:

    You are willing to say that Canada is a “good country? because it is an unimportant country on the world scene.

  95. turcopolier says:

    David Martin
    Which “guys” are you referring to?

  96. turcopolier says:

    So, your justification of the Northern invasion and conquest of the South rests on the “rapid spread of slavery” rather than the indissolubility of the Union. If that were not so you would have mentioned the Union. Yes, it was spreading as part of a constitutional and political struggle over the matter. Considering the number of casualties in that war, are you really sure that slavery was sufficient justification for massive armed resistance to secession especially considering that there was nothing in the constitution than or now that says that the Union is eternal? I maintain that slavery in the US would have died out because of the evolving economics of agribusiness in staple crops. Slaves were important capital goods and had to be maintained in working order. They had to be fed, medicated, clothed and housed. Machines are inherently cheaper and that would have finished slavery in the US in the later 19th Century. I agree about WW1 and most of our other wars. Would you not have resisted NOKO aggression in Korea? Without the Indian Wars there would have been no USA. I suppose that is unimportant to you.

  97. turcopolier says:

    Do you have any evidence that the leaders of the HK resistance are US agents?

  98. Fred says:

    “Supply chains create efficiency by eliminating self-sufficiency; this makes those dependent on them vulnerable to their interruption. Coercive measures …. that involve the manipulation of information and state exploitation of … are ever more common.”
    That insight applies to much more than just US-China relations. If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor comes to mind, as does the phrase “trust and safety council”, “hate speech”, and the latest “Do something!” along with the ever unchallengable, which was also in the ambassadors comments, “climate change”. Yep, a whole lot of elimination of self-sufficiency is coming our way. I think we still call that “progress”.

  99. CK says:

    I do like Chinese (Szechuan) food and am acquainted with several Chinese people who seem decent. Of isms and parties and governmental forms I am not enamoured.
    In American democracy, I have three choices, usually: vote against one person or against the other person or do not vote. Not voting is not an option, the vote is the only weapon the citizen has. Of course since it is the citizen’s weapon it will be diluted by allowing, encouraging and getting out the non-citizen vote.
    Earlier in this thread you made some comments regarding the inalienable rights of man. Other than the right to dream between my own ears and behind my closed eyes, there are no other rights or privileges that cannot be taken without warning and on the whim of some functionary or bureaucrat or minion of whatever nation’s government one wishes to talk about.
    The right to life, let us ask Jeffrey Epstein to moderate that discussion and we can invite Whitey Bulger and his handler Robt. Mueller to contribute.
    The right to liberty, subordinated to our right to be taxed.
    I am old, I dislike much of what I see the USA becoming. And I keep seeing the congress and the administration inserting themselves into other peoples problems and trying to solve the world while the bridges fall down and the potholes propagate and the rivers of human pooh stream down the streets of San Francisco and Seattle.
    There is absolutely nothing about Iran or Iraq or Syria or Yemen or Lebanon that requires the USA to waste lives and money there.
    We are now going into year 19 in Afghanistan from which investment of lives and money we have profited in what way?
    “Is it good for American citizens? If not, don’t.” Simplistic maybe but I like it.

  100. Jack says:

    More projection. You have no idea about my position on Russia and Iran. If you’ve read my posts at SST over the past decade you would know that I have advocated non-interventionism. I have advocated military withdrawal from Europe and the Middle East and rapprochement with Putin.
    The totalitarian CCP is however a malign influence with territorial ambition and a world view antithetical to free people and there comes a point when one needs to stand up before it metastasizes into something even more virulent. They’ve been coddled for far too long and precisely because they believe that we will continue to ignore clear signs of their malevolent intent is why we’ve reached this point. It should be clear to even the most casual observer that the CCP will flout any agreement and no deal can be achieved with them. They need to be destroyed now before a catastrophic global war that you seem so concerned about is unleashed.
    The fact that you keep projecting demonstrates the obtuseness in your arguments. The only conclusion that can be made is that the survival of the Iranian theocracy in your opinion is tied to the totalitarian CCP. Good luck! As many countries around the world are belatedly recognizing the CCP may seem to bring gifts but instead bring enslavement.
    It seems Xi has blinked in HK as the world watched the good people of HK stand up against their creeping tyranny. Now is not the time to back off instead it is the time to continue to ratchet up the pressure. The time has come to break the CCP. The people of Taiwan have built a very successful, pluralistic society. You are willing to sacrifice them in the belief that the totalitarian CCP will protect the Iranian theocracy. Just like you’ve abandoned your fellow Muslim Uighurs in Xinjiang. Millions of whom are facing brutal repression for practicing their faith. You clearly don’t care if they are enslaved and brutalized. Your concern about war seems like hogwash in light of this.
    I believe that the US must stand with the people of Taiwan who have demonstrated that the people of Chinese ethnicity have the ability to build and sustain free and open societies, unlike Walrus’s patronizing analysis above. These are the little guys that deserve our support and there still remain many Americans who are not afraid to confront a tyrannical political force with a totalitarian ideology hell bent on expanding beyond their borders and defend people that live and seek liberty.

  101. JP Billen says:

    HK Chief Exec Carrie Lam says she is going to withdraw the Extradition Act. That may (or not) calm things down. Some are claiming she is running a ‘bait and switch’ scheme.


    Canada is one of the 3 least violent countries on this continent; the other 2 being Costa Rica and Chile.
    Her cities are clean and her citizens enjoy socialized medicine.
    For decades they were supplying UN forces to keep the peace here and there.
    Admittedly, they are a US protectorate and picking a fight against China is stupid for them.

  103. blue peacock says:

    You ain’t fooling anyone. Your “analysis” is rather transparent demonstrating you’re a jealous, anti-American propagandist. Hey, how come you’re not living in the Chavista or CCP utopia? All hat and no cattle. The typical armchair Marxist wearing the Mao hat and sipping cappuccino. Pretentious to the core.

  104. Just wonder if the Dragon’s more worried about security in the vast non-Han territories than in all the drama at the front door. By the same token, Babak, may I repeat a question from some time ago and ask whether the security situation in Baluchestan is similarly causing the Iranians concern?

  105. lurker says:

    I’m not sure a colony ruled by a democracy qualifies as having a democratic tradition. The British felt no qualms about denying democracy to Hong Kong while they were in charge.

  106. Jack says:

    “I suggest you have real issues inside of yourself.”
    It seems the real reason for you casting aspersions on my psychological state is this. Its all about the cash!! Sell out fellow Muslims. Of course they’re not my sect. Ditch your high minded pronouncements and have the courage to state why you’re CCP’s bitch. You’re owned!

    …China will invest $280bn developing Iran’s oil, gas and petrochemicals sectors….There will be another $120bn investment in upgrading Iran’s transport and manufacturing infrastructure…Among other benefits, Chinese companies will be given the first refusal to bid on any new, stalled or uncompleted oil and gasfield developments. Chinese firms will also have first refusal on opportunities to become involved with any and all petchems projects in Iran, including the provision of technology, systems, process ingredients and personnel required to complete such projects.
    “This will include up to 5,000 Chinese security personnel on the ground in Iran to protect Chinese projects,….”China will also be able to buy any and all oil, gas and petchems products at a minimum guaranteed discount of 12pc to the six-month rolling mean price of comparable benchmark products, plus another 6pc to 8pc of that metric for risk-adjusted compensation.”
    “Given the exchange rates involved in converting these soft currencies into hard currencies that Iran can obtain from its friendly Western banks—including Europäisch-Iranische Handelsbank [in Germany], Oberbank [in Austria] and Halkbank [in Turkey]—China is looking at another 8-12pc discount [relative to the dollar price of the average benchmarks], which

  107. different clue says:

    I don’t think that “air quotes” around the phrase climate change will work any more to suggest the climate is not changing. And since the phrase climate change was invented by Frank Luntz after some extensive focus-group researching to find a friendly fuzzier word for global warming, I don’t think that putting “air quotes” around the ongoing changes’ more accurately descriptive name of global warming will work any more either.
    And in fact, it might be time to call the process global heating. Because enough surplus one-way heat has been building up now to melt significant volumes of ice in glaciers and non-polar ice fields and around the edges of the major polar ice caps. One can call it “evidence” in an effort to wish it away, but it won’t be wished away successfully.
    One could still put “air quotes” around the words “man made” in the phrase “man made” global heating . . . if one wishes. Since I am reasonably impressed with a fairly high degree of personal confidence in the fact-supported reality-basedness of the man made global warming theory, I don’t put any “air quotes” around it.
    But that is still a discussion which could be had, if one wishes.

  108. different clue says:

    Earlier, she had said “table” the act. The HK people noted that “table” is not the same as “withdraw”. They called on her to “withdraw” the act. If she is now saying that she is going to withdraw the act, the HK people will watch to see if she really DOES withdraw the act.
    And given the police nastiness since the original protests . . . and the HK government use of Triad enforcers to beat down protesters at a particular protest . . . the HK protesters and protest-sympathisers probably want more than just truthfully withdrawing the Extradition Act. I think they have said they want a real inquiry into police behavior, direct universal HK suffrage for an HK-based HK government, and some other things too.
    If the CCP were to permit the HK people to be seen in public to win these things for real within the borders of HK in return for the HK peoples’ public appearance of abject kow-towing to ultimate CCP sovereign national authority over HK; would that leave everyone involved feeling their respective survival interests have been protected?
    In the meantime, while it is true that no Act of Congress can force the CCP or its HK agents on the scene in HK to change their behavior, freezing the CCP money parkers’ money in place and forbidding the CCP money parkers from ever visiting ( and counting and fondling) their beautiful money will force them to eat some small fraction of the bitterness which they are feeding such heaping helpings of to the HK people.

  109. doug says:

    Ran across this interesting academic paper out of Singapore published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science on the cultural variation and tightness of control across China’s provinces and how that impacts various factors such as innovation, acceptance of LGBQ (huh?) and such. Interesting reading. I found the academic’s focal points curious.

  110. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Dragon is more concerned about internal stability than anything else. One whiff of chaos and millions would die.

  111. Babak Makkinejad says:

    The 2 million Deobandi Baluch whose sect considers the Shia to be heretics?
    They are a challenge but not a crisis.
    Google Makki Mosque in Zahedan

  112. j2 says:

    “Give me liberty or give me death”
    Quite prescient of you, sir. That is exactly what the Hong Kong protest leaders were saying, according to Matt Schlapp, chairman of the American Conservative Union, related by Schlapp this morning to WMAL’s show “Mornings On the Mall.”
    At 4:23 https://omny.fm/shows/mornings-on-the-mall/wmal-interview-matt-schlapp-09-04-19
    Thank you for the info on this bill. Many of us have been wondering how best to support the Hong Kong protest kids. This may help.
    These kids are quoting our founders as well as carrying our flag and singing our national anthem. smh Amazing the influence our founders have, so many many years later. Would that our people felt that way again.

  113. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Look, you guys are living on an island surrounded by a sea of tyranny. You best try to preserve your own freedoms rather than picking fights with others. You cannot prevail and you will destroy your own freedoms in the process.

  114. Barbara Ann says:

    One Belt to rule them all, One Road to find them,
    One Bank to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
    In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

  115. CK says:

    Would that it were so today:
    “Wherever the standard of freedom and independence has been or shall be unfurled, there will her heart, her benedictions and her prayers be. But she goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own. She will recommend the general cause, by the countenance of her voice, and the benignant sympathy of her example.
    She well knows that by once enlisting under other banners than her own, were they even the banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself, beyond the power of extrication, in all the wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy, and ambition, which assume the colors and usurp the standard of freedom. The fundamental maxims of her policy would insensibly change from liberty to force. The frontlet upon her brows would no longer beam with the ineffable splendor of freedom and independence; but in its stead would soon be substituted an imperial diadem, flashing in false and tarnished lustre the murky radiance of dominion and power. She might become the dictatress of the world: but she would be no longer the ruler of her own soul…”
    J. Q. Adams Sec of State, 1821 response to the Greeks wanting the USA to intervene in their fight against the Ottomans.

  116. Barbara Ann says:

    I am very late to this discussion, but overall this sentiment most closely echos my own. Yes the CCP is a totalitarian monstrosity, but the best way to fight its abuses and that of numerous other tyrannies is not thru selective, unilateral action. Rather the US and other nations of free people should use the UN and other international bodies to deter/curb potential excesses – an obvious one being a potential crack down on legitimate protest in HK.
    A far more clear and preset danger is the continued erosion of US moral leadership in the world. Reigning in the neocons and addressing domestic corruption should be this administration’s priorities. It is also sadly ironic that the bill refers to “systems of mass surveillance and predictive policing” when systems like Peter Thiel’s Palantir are already in use in LA and the ACLU is telling us that “William Barr Helped Build America’s Surveillance State“.
    I wish the people of HK luck in fighting for their rights. If the people of mainland China are happy to live in their gilded cage we should respect their right to do so. My primary interest in is stopping this cage forming around me.

  117. anon says:

    I have met chinese people from hk and the mainland.done business with them.There is a difference.A subtle class difference and way of thinking.Mainland chinese could learn a thing or two from there brothers in hk,something no amount of new money can buy.

  118. Mightypeon says:

    To be frank, I would remove Sweden and Switzerland and probably add indonesia. Pakistan as well, maybe even Ehtiopia/South Africa.
    Germany is not sovereign. Which is not a fact I am fond off, and which also has reasons (mostly because millions of people have entirely legitimate beefs with German sovereignity based on German conduct the last time it was sovereign) that are understandable.
    The question of how much vasallization penalty box time we earned based on our conduct is pretty interesting, and not evenly awnsered.
    If you think that Israel has a powerfull hold on US politics, the US lobby in Germany is arguably stronger. There are also legal requirements from the 50s that are still in place, and which give the US right which are pretty equivalent what an imperial sovereign has over a vasall.
    The US has essentially vasallized its allies (which took more or less long, France maintained independence longer then Britain), which btw. is also a reason for their limited military competence compared to prio to vasallization (Vasalls always fight worse then independents).
    I mean, not that I blame the US for that, I would argue that most Empires would have done the same in the position, and that quite a few would have been far less polite about it (most notably the main competing Empire during the process of vasallisation).
    In some ways, I believe that the “politeness” will come to bite the US in the back. Tribute to the USA is not paid formally, but is essentially done by selling real existing goods for US Dollars (created out of thin air by the fed and just somewhat backed by other peoples oil). Its nicer for the vasall then actually paying tribute directly, because he can use the dollars to purchase things not just from the US, or other US vasalls, but even from states outside of the US tributary sphere.
    In a way, this means that US industries have to compete with free stuff, which they unsurprisingly arent very good at (who would?). It also inflates the Dollars value and makes US products less competetive, especially outside of its tributary sphere.
    There is a second tributary aspect, which once more is perhaps too much politeness on the parts of the USA. In order to buy US protection, states frequently buy US weaponry. This massively inflates the prices of such weaponry (you dont buy F35 to actually use them in battle, you buy F35 to have more American planes crewed by Americans in battle on your side, a number of states are far more interesting in paying billions for the second thing). This is essentially resulting in many US weapon systems not being competetive with Russian, European (to a lesser extent because they suffer from second order defense price inflation as well) or Chinese systems from a “bang for the buck” perspective.
    By pretending to not have a tribute system, the US essentially distorts and weakens its own economy.

  119. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Thank you.
    So, roughly speaking, and taking cognizance of your comments, we have 10 sovereign states that could then convener a conferece and decide on the contours of a new peace to replace that of Yalta. The other 170 “independent” countries do not count.

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