America is not an ethnically based nation. Most nations remain that way. This shows that even Singapore, which is ethnically Chinese, may be producing spies for China. Will a clash between the US and China see large numbers of Chinese supporting their ancestral homeland?
Jun Wei Yeo was charged with using his political consultancy in America as a front to collect information for Chinese intelligence, US officials say. Separately, the US said a Chinese researcher accused of hiding her ties to China’s military was detained.
China earlier ordered the closure of the US consulate in Chengdu.
The move to shut down the diplomatic mission in the south-western city was in response to the US closing China’s consulate in Houston.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the decision was taken because China was “stealing” intellectual property.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin responded by saying that the US move was based on “a hodgepodge of anti-Chinese lies.” (BBC7/25/2020)
PHILIPPINES ASKS CHINA FOR HELP
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said he has asked China for help in getting access to a coronavirus vaccine as governments around the world make arrangements to secure supply for their citizens ahead of what is expected to be a global scramble for the much-awaited shots.
In an address Monday, Mr. Duterte, who has favored close ties with Beijing, said he had made a plea to Chinese President Xi Jinping that the Philippines be one of the first to receive the doses if China has them. He also asked Mr. Xi to grant Manila credit . . .
AUSSIE PM FIT FOR WAR
ONE of Australia’s most experienced military Generals has backed Prime Minister Scott Morrison as capable of running – and winning – a “serious war.”
Retired Australian Army General Jim Molan AO DSC said this week the Australian Prime Minister displayed the type of leadership you’d expect in war time.
Molan, who now serves in the Australian Senate, shared his observations during a Northern Forum address on Tuesday evening.
Speaking at the online event, Senator Molan said Australia’s defense capabilities were the best he’d seen during his 40 years of service.
“I would suggest to you with this government we could run a serious war,” he said. “We have a Prime Minister who shows the type of leadership you would expect in war time.
“We have a bunch of ministers and bureaucrats now who have been tested through the fires, tested through COVID – they are extraordinarily experienced from my observation and know what to do.”
Senator Molan retired from the Australian Army in 2008 after having served, among other postings, as Chief of Operations of the multi-national forces in Iraq, where he oversaw 170,000 allied troops. (Politicom, 7/28/2020)
IRAN’S MULLAHS LOOKING FORWARD TO A BIDEN VICTORY
The ruling mullahs of Iran are excited. They are convinced that a new US president, like his previous boss, former President Barack Obama, will throw them the lifeline so badly needed for their survival, their hold on power, and their ability to advance their nuclear and other imperialist plans — both in Venezuela against the United States, and in the Middle East.
Iran’s economic conditions have become so dire that even some officials are warning of possible revolt and the collapse of the Islamic Republic.
It is important to note that without Iran’s financial and military assistance, many militia and terror groups could not survive. As Hezbollah’s leader, Hassan Nasrallah, admitted, “… Hezbollah’s budget, its income, its expenses, everything it eats and drinks, its weapons and rockets, are from the Islamic Republic of Iran.”
(Iran: the mullahs are excited, Majid Rafizadeh, Gatestone, 7/28/2020)
Israel sends reinforcements to north, bracing for imminent attack IDF deploys additional firepower, intel-gathering tools and special forces a day after alleged attempted Hezbollah assault. (Times of Israel, 28 July, 2020)
The Israel Defense Forces deployed additional reinforcements to the country’s Lebanese and Syrian borders on Tuesday, indicating it was bracing for more violence along the frontiers after an alleged attempted attack by the Hezbollah terror group the day before. Israeli officials expected an attack on Israeli troops by the Lebanese terror group within the next 48 hours, before the start of the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha on Thursday night, according to an unattributed Channel 12 report on Tuesday. Over the past week, Hezbollah has threatened some form of retaliation for the death of one of its fighters last week in Syria in an airstrike that it attributed to Israel, but which the Jewish state has not officially acknowledged conducting. (https://www.timesofisrael.com/israel-sends-reinforcements-to-north-bracing-for-imminent-attack/)
Latinos are the largest group of Californians admitted to University of California for the first time (LA Times, 16 July, 2020)
Latinos represent the highest number of prospective freshmen accepted into the University of California for fall 2020, part of the most diverse first-year class ever admitted, according to preliminary UC data. Latinos slightly eclipsed Asian Americans, making up 36% of the 79,953 California students offered admission. Asians made up 35%, white students 21% and Black students 5%.
The lost boys: the white working class is being left behind These children are the forgotten demographic (The Spectator UK, 18 July 2020, by Christopher Snowdon)
You can argue about the merits of pulling down statues, but it’s hard to make the case that mass protests serve no useful purpose. At the very least, they provoke debate and draw attention to uncomfortable topics that it might otherwise be easier to ignore. The recent protests have forced everyone to have difficult discussions about race, class, poverty and attainment. Any serious examination of the statistics shows that we’re pretty far from equal, but what the figures also show is that it’s wrong-headed and damaging to lump very different groups together. In these discussions politicians often lazily assume that all BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) people are the same, and that all white groups are equally privileged. But a proper look at the data shows not just that there are striking differences within BAME groups, but that the very worst-performing group of all are white working-class boys — the forgotten demographic.
BLAMING THE VICTIMS
An increasingly popular idea is that . . . only minorities can be victims. The notion is hardly limited to the recent riots in America. Elements of such thinking often appear in other contexts.
British women, for instance, including rape victims who draw attention to “Asian” (Pakistani and South Asian) sex grooming gangs, are being attacked by the “woke” establishment.
Earlier this month in the UK, Sarah Champion, a Labor politician and MP for Rotherham (the epicenter of sex grooming), was accused of “fanning the flames of racial hatred” and “acting like a neo-fascist murderer.” Her crime? She had dared to assert that “Britain has a problem with British Pakistani men raping and exploiting white girls.”
(“Blaming the Victims of Muslim Rapists,” Raymond Ibrahim, MEF 7/11 – Raymond Ibrahim is a Judith Friedman Rosen Fellow at the Middle East Forum)
POWERFUL SERMON OPENS HAGIA SOPHIA TO MUSLIMS
In a July 10, 2020 decree, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan converted the Hagia Sophia from a museum into a mosque and placed it under the authority of the country’s Ministry of Religious Affairs. On July 24, Friday prayers were held for the first time in 86 years in the Hagia Sophia Mosque’s main space. Before the prayers were performed, President Erdoğan recited verses from the Quran. Diyanet minister Ali Erbaş went to the minbar (“pulpit”) bearing a sword and gave a sermon that, among other things, praised several Turkish conquerors, including Ottoman Sultan Mehmed II, who conquered Istanbul in 1453, and Sultan Alparslan, who won the 1071 Battle of Manzikert, which opened Asia Minor to Turkish settlement. (MEMRI 7/29/2020)
US to withdraw or relocate more troops in Germany than previously thought
Defense Secretary Mark Esper has outlined proposals that foresee bringing about 6,400 troops back to the US and relocating another 5,400 within Europe. That entails reducing the presence in Germany by roughly one third. (Deusche Welle 7/29/2020)
US PRESSURE ON GERMAN BUSINESS
In individual talks with German and EU companies, the Trump administration is threatening repercussions, if they do not withdraw from the construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. According to reports, up to twelve representatives of three US ministries have held separate video conferences with European companies, to coerce them into withdrawing from the Nord Stream 2 project. The latest US sanctions against the gas pipeline affect 120 enterprises from 12 EU countries. Should the construction of Nord Stream 2 remain unfinished, the direct damage could reach twelve billion euros. German business associations are calling on Berlin and Brussels to take harsh retaliatory measures, otherwise US reprisals could set a “dangerous precedent” that could be repeated at any time. Business representatives draw attention to the fact that the USA had tried to torpedo German-Russian energy relations, beginning already with those between West Germany and the Soviet Union in the 1960s and 1980s, but ultimately had to yield each time. (German Foreign Policy, 7/27/2020)
THINKING THRU A CIVIL WAR
If Trump wins in November, it is foreseeable that his many enemies will ratchet up their hatred for him to even more destructive extremes. A bloody civil war would become likely, escalating an already violent cultural battle to a new threshold. How this might impact our schools, workplaces and neighborhoods is unpredictable even if the tactical outcome is not. The red states, wide-open spaces where politically conservative Americans tend to live and work, have superior firepower, to put it mildly, and their geographical vastness has rendered them invulnerable to attack.
They also provide most of the food consumed by blue-zone denizens, implying red partisans could lay siege to blue, bringing the color war to a relatively quick end. Political liberals have taken to boycotting the wares of nearly everyone perceived as unfriendly to their cause. It remains to be seen whether conservatives can get sufficiently aroused to return fire, not only by boycotting every product or service associated with liberal ownership, but by disrupting the flow of essentials into the big cities where they live. (The Morning Line, 7/26/2020)
TO THE POINT
- Europe bracing for second wave of Covid-19 – Europe is preparing for a second wave of Covid-19 amid continuing outbreaks. The Belgian government has warned that the country could be put into a second “complete lockdown” and Catalonia says it may also have to reintroduce lockdown measures. Germany’s public health advisory body has said it is “deeply concerned” about the rise in cases and France has called for greater vigilance. (The Week, 7/28/2020)
- Study finds men are performing more domestic tasks – Men are performing more domestic duties than ever, according to new research. The study found that men are spending an extra five-and-a-half hours a week on childcare and housework compared to 40 years ago, while women do nearly three hours less of domestic work. However, women still do 80% more cooking, cleaning and caring than men. (The Week, 7/28/2020)
- Israel Aircraft Industries is known as a world leader in drone technology and was recently tapped by the German Air Force to develop a special Heron drone for the Luftwaffe. The German model of the Heron TP UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) completed its first flight in Israel’s skies to test modifications designed for the German Ministry of Defense. The EU company Airbus DS Airborne Solutions, a subsidiary of the well-known passenger plane maker, is collaborating with IAI on the project. The Germans will lease a number of UAVs with maintenance services, with Luftwaffe personnel currently training in Israel with Israeli counterparts at an IAF base in central Israel. (Yakir Benzion, United with Israel, 7/27/2020)
- Over-55’s main losers from Covid – Workers over the age of 50 have suffered larger cuts to their earnings than any other age group during the economic downturn triggered by coronavirus, a new report reveals. Britain’s oldest workers have seen their pay fall by an average of 23%, while millennials and middle-aged workers have been hit by salary cuts of 19% and 17% respectively, according to the Financial Conduct Authority. (The Week, 7/29/2020)
- A Christian teenager was sexually assaulted by his Muslim employer in early June. The boy’s father and brother were then beaten for trying to seek justice for him. (Persecution.org, June 19, 2020, Pakistan)