Aletho News


Japan to open NATO liaison office in new provocation against China and Russia

By Ahmed Adel | May 15, 2023

Japanese Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi announced that his country is considering opening a NATO liaison office, demonstrating that Tokyo is deepening its ties with the US and becoming more hostile to China and Russia. Tokyo’s rapprochement with NATO would strengthen the anti-China/Russia alliance and advance the US plans to create a NATO-styled organisation in the Far East.

“We are already in discussions, but no details (have been) finalised yet,” Hayashi said on May 10.

He specifically referenced Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine as something with repercussions far beyond Europe’s borders that made Japan rethink regional security.

“The reason why we are discussing about this is that since the aggression by Russia to Ukraine, the world (has) become more unstable,” he claimed. “Something happening in East Europe is not only confined to the issue in East Europe, and that affects directly the situation here in the Pacific. That’s why a cooperation between us in East Asia and NATO (is) becoming … increasingly important.”

However, the foreign minister failed to explain how events in Ukraine affect those in East Asia. Rather, Hayashi is using this as a weak justification for why Japan is militarising, which directly relates to Tokyo’s claims against sovereign seas and territories belonging to China and Russia.

The opening of a NATO office in Japan does not mean that the country will join the Alliance, but it does open a path for Japan to become a member of an expanded AUKUS (Australia-United Kingdom-United States). This, in turn, will require Tokyo to strengthen its contacts with NATO.

It is recalled that NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, went to Japan and South Korea in January 2023 to lay the groundwork for strengthened ties. This is one of the reasons why Tokyo is already involved in conflicts that are not directly related to the region, despite some of the mental gymnastics it procures to create a justification.

The Japanese government is also providing $5.5 billion in aid to Ukraine, which can be seen as a step forward for the country to join AUKUS and confirms Tokyo’s intentions to strengthen its relationship with NATO. However, NATO will not officially expand to include Japan because members of the Alliance, such as Hungary, do not always align their position for the sake of serving US interests.

At the same time, France, at least in rhetoric, is seeking a degree of autonomy from the US. French President Emmanuel Macron said on April 9 that Europe needs to limit its dependence on the US.

In this way, the expansion of NATO to Asia is not likely since this initiative could lead to a further weakening of unity within the military alliance. The Americans are aware of this, and for this reason, they are working on a separate Eastern bloc to strengthen relations between NATO and Japan, most likely through the AUKUS format.

Suppose the AUKUS bloc includes Japan and intends to become the equivalent of NATO in Asia, with which the Western military alliance will cooperate closely; it would be a significant step in pressuring China and Russia since Japan’s technological and military potential exceeds that of many European countries.

It must be borne in mind that Tokyo’s rapprochement with NATO would reinforce the anti-Chinese/Russian ideology prevailing in the West. However, Tokyo’s actions come at a time when many countries in Asia and even some in Europe do not fully agree with this course of action.

The opening of the NATO office in Japan clearly indicates that the US plans to create a so-called “NATO of the Far East” and is making concrete steps towards this goal.

It cannot be overlooked that Japan’s reestablishment of overly friendly relations with South Korea attests to these plans, mainly as they have unexpectedly gone to a new qualitative level in a single leap. The President of South Korea has already visited Japan, and there are plans for Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida to visit South Korea soon, as well as their impending G7 summit meeting in Hiroshima. This has occurred in recent times despite Tokyo and Seoul being embroiled for many years in mutual accusations on various historical occasions.

The leaders of both East Asian countries now hold a distinctly pro-American stance. If the opening of a NATO liaison office in Tokyo is successful, it can be expected that one will open in Seoul too, especially since the country’s leadership has taken on a provocative position against Beijing and Moscow, including the drawing of red lines concerning the war in Ukraine.

Ahmed Adel is a Cairo-based geopolitics and political economy researcher.

May 15, 2023 Posted by | Militarism, Russophobia | , , | Leave a comment

NATO’s Planned Liaison Office In Japan Will Accelerate The Expansion Of AUKUS+


The US Is Rounding Up Allies Ahead Of A Possible War With China”, which the former plans to fight via the emerging alliance system that can be described as AUKUS+ if it unfolds. This refers to that regional group’s function as the core of a larger anti-Chinese network that informally includes Japan, New Zealand, the Philippines, and South Korea. NATO will also obviously play a role too, with that bloc building upon its Secretary-General’s related statement of intent by opening a liaison office in Japan.

Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi told CNN that this development is supposedly due to the Ukrainian Conflict making the entire world less stable, but the reality is that this is part of a preplanned move to more effectively coordinate the containment of China. It would have happened on a different pretext had that aforementioned conflict’s latest phase not broken out last year, but that event provided a convenient excuse for speeding up their plans and disguising them as anti-Russian instead.

NATO’s liaison office in Japan will serve as that alliance’s first official outpost in the Asia-Pacific, thus enabling it to more directly organize AUKUS+’s expansion. Assembling that regional dimension of this emerging system is important in and of itself, but the European one is indispensable for maximally pressuring China. It’s therefore expected that more countries from the continent will soon dispatch vessels to the region as part of the joint operations that the liaison office will organize.

This is precisely what EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell had in mind when suggesting late last month that member states should patrol the Taiwan Strait. Since practically every EU member is also part of NATO, this de facto amounts to that alliance doing this, which is dangerous due to the risk of this provoking an incident with China that could prompt the implementation of Article 5. That’s probably the point though, namely to create a crisis that can justify the further acceleration of AUKUS+’s expansion.

Nothing good is therefore expected to come from the opening of NATO’s planned liaison office in Japan. This development will only destabilize the Asia-Pacific, put additional pressure on China, and thus take the chance that whatever incident transpires as a result is incapable of being contained. It’s an irresponsible risk, but NATO has convinced itself that it’s worth taking in order to speed up its regional hegemonic plans.

May 11, 2023 Posted by | Militarism | , , , | Leave a comment

America faces major hurdles trying to form ‘Asia-Pacific NATO’

By Drago Bosnic | May 11, 2023

While serving as the UK Foreign Secretary, Liz Truss pompously announced that so-called “Global NATO” was in the making, while also calling for the United Nations to be reformed to the political West’s liking (although quite the opposite is sorely needed). However, the ever-belligerent power pole seems to be having trouble forming even the “Asia-Pacific NATO”, let alone a global organization that would gather virtually all of Washington DC’s vassals and satellite states. The main issue seems to be stemming from the unresolved historical disputes of the Second World War and the way it affected the Asia-Pacific region.

It should be noted that attempts to create a NATO equivalent in the region are hardly new. The United States has been trying to accomplish this for decades during the (First) Cold War. However, the deals would usually fall apart faster than it took them to be signed by all parties involved. Such disunity greatly contributed to the humiliating defeat of US aggression in Vietnam/Indochina half a century ago. Nowadays, similar disunity is once again emerging among America’s East Asian satellite states, specifically between South Korea and Japan. The US insists that the two countries should set their differences aside and go for a historical push that would lead to complete reconciliation.

However, numerous Japanese war crimes during WWII (as well as in the decades prior) are deeply ingrained in the minds of the Korean people, on both sides of the 38th parallel. In fact, it’s one of the few things both Seoul and Pyongyang actually agree on, albeit tacitly. A recent South Korean court case was supposed to resolve the issue of several major Japanese companies using forced labor in Korea during WWII, but Tokyo was still left unscathed by the process, which angered many Koreans. South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol dubbed the court decision “a step towards trilateral cooperation to defend freedom, peace and prosperity not only in our two countries, but also around the world”.

The “trilateral cooperation” he was referring to is between the US, Japan and South Korea. However, only a third of South Korean citizens support the deal, as they consider it didn’t truly address Japanese war crimes. Worse yet, this isn’t the first time such deals have fallen through. In 2015, a similar arrangement regarding the so-called “comfort women battalions”, another Japanese war crime that went largely unpunished, collapsed shortly after it was announced, as the vast majority of South Koreans rejected the deal. On the other hand, Japan considers this to be a “case closed”, further antagonizing the (rightfully) angered Korean people who suffered tremendously during decades of Japanese occupation.

To add insult to injury, South Korea is doing all this so it could firmly join an explicitly anti-Chinese coalition (and also implicitly anti-Russian), becoming the first country in the line to get quite literally obliterated in a possible superpower confrontation, as if the US inability to deal with North Korea wasn’t enough already. And while Seoul might feel “motivated” by incessant US pressure, the people of South Korea are wholly unmoved. They see China as an important trade partner, as well as a virtually endless market for South Korean pop culture. Thus, they have no interest in an open confrontation (or any other kind) with their giant neighbor. On the contrary, they prefer the current status quo.

The US is worried this could greatly weaken their ability to form a wider and more compliant anti-Chinese coalition. For years, Washington DC has been trying to enlist Beijing’s neighbors in a “freedom and democracy alliance”, the bulk of which would be composed of Japanese and South Korean forces. Precisely this is the reason why Tokyo started a massive rearmament program last year, while Seoul engaged its fast-growing domestic military-industrial complex to arm several key US vassals around the world (particularly Poland). However, the question remains, how ready this anti-Chinese/anti-Russian coalition would be to deal with powers that make North Korea’s nuclear program look like a footnote?

America’s usual warmongering doesn’t only bring instability to the region that enjoyed decades of relative peace, prosperity and economic cooperation, but it also risks leading to the complete fracturing of US-imposed alliances, which itself could backfire and cause Washington DC to lose influence in the region. Naturally, this would be fantastic for the advancement of actual peace, but it makes America’s foreign policy framework look completely self-defeating and even suicidal. Similar efforts have already led to such results, with the Quad (Japan, UK, US, India) effectively dead as New Delhi has outright rejected anti-Russian rhetoric. The only exception to this is the AUKUS (Australia, UK and US), but even this alliance has created issues with other US partners.

Apart from being virtually redundant, as the so-called Five Eyes (UK, US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand) covers its functions, AUKUS created a lot of controversies after Australia backed out of the extremely lucrative submarine deal with France and opted for an arrangement with its Anglo-American overlords. This didn’t only make Canberra look like an outright satellite state, but also made Paris deeply frustrated, which might have contributed to its (for now only apparent) tilt towards Beijing, the very superpower AUKUS is aimed against. Such dictatorial US moves are creating multilayered problems in other geopolitical theaters as America is effectively forcing others to prioritize its national interests over their own.

Drago Bosnic is an independent geopolitical and military analyst.

May 11, 2023 Posted by | Economics, Illegal Occupation, Militarism, Russophobia | , , , , | Leave a comment

Bombing Japan After the Atomic Bombings

Tales of the American Empire | April 27, 2023

Americans who read about Japan’s surrender in August 1945 learn only part of what happened because historical accounts are incomplete. They recite the official narrative of the United States government that invading Japan would have caused a million American casualties. Luckily, the United States had developed the atomic bomb. After dropping two atomic bombs Japan quickly surrendered. This official history fails to mention that Japan was seeking to negotiate a surrender since late 1944 after it was clear the war was lost, but powerful people wanted the war to continue longer to demonstrate the power of atomic bombs.

The two atomic bomb attacks produced the same destruction as previous raids involving hundreds of B-29 bombers so they had little impact on the war or Japanese leaders, who were really terrified that Soviet forces had landed in northern Japan. Delaying the end of the war to demonstrate two atomic bombs was immoral and counterproductive. For unknown reasons, the Americans launched a massive bombing raid five days after the second atomic bomb was dropped.


“Japs Asked Peace in January”; Walter Trohan; Chicago Tribune; August 19, 1945;…

Related Tale: “Japan’s Conditional Surrender”;    • Japan’s Condition…  

“Was There a Diplomatic Alternative? The Atomic Bombing and Japan’s Surrender”; Jeremy Kuzmarov; The Asia-Pacific Journal; October 15, 2021;…

“The B-29 Raid That Ended World War II”; J.A. Hitchcock;…

“Bombing of Kumagaya in World War II”; (five days after Nagasaki was bombed); Wikipedia;…

“American Had Plans to Help Russia Invade Japan During World War II”; Sebastien Roblin; The National Interest; December 31, 2020;…

Related Tale: “The Japanese Victory on Iwo Jima”;    • The Japanese Vict…  

Related Tale: “The Disastrous Liberation of the Philippines”;    • The Disastrous Li…  

April 30, 2023 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular, Video | , | Leave a comment

Twitter Received 16,000 Information Requests From Over 85 Governments at Start of 2022

Sputnik – 25.04.2023

WASHINGTON – Twitter said on Tuesday that it received more than 16,000 government information requests for user data from over 85 countries in the first half of 2022 alone.

“Twitter received over 16,000 government information requests for user data from over 85 countries during the reporting period. Disclosure rates vary by requester country,” the social network said in a press release.

The United States, France, Japan, Germany and India were the top five requesting countries for the period, the release said.

Twitter also received about 53,000 legal requests from governments around the world to remove content, with the majority of requests coming from Japan, South Korea, Turkey, and India, the release added.

In the first half of 2022, Twitter required users to remove 6,586,109 pieces of content that violated the company’s rules – an increase of 29% from the second half of 2021, according to the release.

April 26, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , , , , | Leave a comment

America faces a two-front war: Russia-China alliance moving ahead at great speed

By Gilbert Doctorow | April 14, 2023

Today China officially announced the visit of their Minister of Defense Li Shangfu to Russia on Sunday for three days of consultations with his Russian counterpart Sergei Shoigu and also with Russia’s senior military command in charge of the war operations in Ukraine.

Li Shangfu took his present post a little over a month ago following the re-election of Xi Jinping to the presidency and a reshuffling of ministerial portfolios. It was particularly noteworthy that Li has been on the U.S. sanctions list since 2018 for alleged cooperation with Russia.

The sense of this visit was interpreted by expert panelists on the news and analysis program Sixty Minutes earlier today as follows: to inform the Chinese leadership of what has been learned by the Russian command from the 14 months of war in Ukraine.

What is the relevance of Russia’s on the ground experience? Although armchair generals in the West were very quick to fault Russia with making serious mistakes and showing unpreparedness in the first phase of the war, the reality is that since WWII no major power has been engaged in a peer-to-peer war entailing vicious fighting on the ground without enjoying command of the skies. That is what we see in Ukraine today. The United States has had no such experience. Nor has China.

The Russians now have a lot to tell their Chinese friends about the latest NATO military tactics and about the U.S. and European hardware that is being given its baptism by fire in direct engagement with themselves. The capture of a German Leopard tank in battle near Kherson yesterday is just one of many war trophies that the Russians can lend out.

Will such sharing of information critically important to China as it examines the possibility of a similar armed conflict with the United States and its proxies over Taiwan be cost free? Of course not. We may take it as a given that during the visit of Li to Russia, he and the Russians will  be planning further steps to turn their strategic partnership into something more closely resembling a full-blown military alliance with mutual security obligations.

Meanwhile the Russian Pacific fleet is now on full alert and performing exercises to repel an unidentified potential aggressor. A gentle hint as to who this aggressor might be is the fact that particular attention is being given to maneuvers around the Kurile Islands, over which Japan has territorial claims. Though the subject is not much discussed in our mainstream media, the Russians consider the Japanese navy to be a formidable force. Japan is one of the key allies in the “Pacific NATO” that the U.S. is currently building to contain China and, as needed, to fight a big war against Beijing.

Also worth noting is that last week the Chinese military response to the meetings in California by Taiwan president Tsai Ing-wen with Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy was to simulate an air and sea blockade of Taiwan. This in turn elicited a call by the ever inflammatory Senator Lindsey Graham (R – South Carolina) for the U.S. to disrupt the flow of oil from the Middle East to China in the event of a blockade being imposed on Taiwan. If anything can hasten the signing of a full military alliance between Russia and China, it is precisely that threat.

All of the foregoing latest developments necessarily raise a question that was not discussed on Russian television but which is highly timely for Americans to deal with on their own: whether the Biden Administration, by its ongoing reckless foreign and military policy that is headed towards an unwinnable two-front war, is not betraying the security interests of the United States. I leave it to legal experts whether that would constitute an impeachable offense.

©Gilbert Doctorow, 2023

April 14, 2023 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , | Leave a comment

Japanese environment economist says ALPS-treated Fukushima radioactive wastewater still contains radionuclides

Tokyo  urged to stop dumping plan

By Xu Keyue | Global Times | March 27, 2023

While stressing that the so-called treated water from the destroyed Fukushima nuclear plant still contains radionuclides that are not able to be removed, a renowned Japanese environment economist said in an exclusive interview with the Global Times recently that we must persistently demand that the Japanese government and the Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) stop dumping the nuclear-contaminated wastewater into the ocean.

Kenichi Oshima, professor at Ryukoku University, told the Global Times that the Japanese government and TEPCO should not release the nuclear-contaminated wastewater.

The Japanese government and TEPCO plan to use ALPS – Advanced Liquid Processing System – to treat the nuclear-contaminated wastewater from the Fukushima nuclear accident and then release the treated water into the ocean. The treated water contains radionuclides including ruthenium, strontium-90 and iodine-129, in addition to tritium, Oshima noted.

Before the release, TEPCO developed a “Radiation and Environmental Impact Assessment Report on Ocean Discharge of ALPS Processed Water” to assess the impact of ocean discharge.

“Nevertheless, we believe it is impossible to accurately predict the ecological effects of ocean discharges over the next several decades,” the Japanese environment economist said.

Commenting on the so-called treated Fukushima water, Mao Ning, spokesperson for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, said on Monday that Japan has been claiming that ALPS-treated nuclear-contaminated water is safe and harmless and that it opposes calling the water “nuclear-contaminated”. The fact, however, is that the water contains over 60 radionuclides, many of which cannot be treated effectively with existing technologies.

Some long-lived radionuclides may spread with ocean currents and form a bioconcentration effect, which will multiply the total amount of radionuclides in the environment, causing unpredictable hazards to the marine environment and human health, Mao pointed out, noting that the discharge will last as long as 30 years or even longer.

Mao’s remarks are made in response to Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Yasutoshi Nishimura, who claimed on Friday that the use of “nuclear-contaminated water” is a “misunderstanding of facts” after the heads of state of China and Russia expressed serious concern about Japan’s plan to dump the nuclear-contaminated water in a joint statement released on March 21.

The maturity and effectiveness of the ALPS technology has not been evaluated or certified by a third party, and the treatment of such large quantities and complex components of nuclear-contaminated wastewater is unprecedented, and its long-term effectiveness is in doubt, Mao said.

Oshima noted that in 2015, the Japanese government and TEPCO pledged in writing that they would never discharge the nuclear-contaminated water into the ocean without the understanding of fishermen and the public. The Japanese government and TEPCO have been explaining the situation to fishermen and local residents but have not obtained their consent.

However, the Japanese government and TEPCO are not listening to the voices of the people, including those involved in the fishing industry, Oshima revealed.

“We must persistently demand that the [Japanese] government and TEPCO stop discharging ALPS-treated water,” he stressed.

The Japanese professor raised two alternatives in dealing with the radioactive wastewater.

The first is to store the water in large tanks. The half-life of tritium is 12.3 years, so after 123 years of storage, the radioactivity will have decayed to 1/1,000 of its original level. Japan has experience in oil stockpiling, so this is feasible, said Oshima.

The second is mortar solidification. Mortar solidification can prevent leakage. Mortar solidification has been used in the US, Oshima noted.

What Japan needs to do now is to take seriously the legitimate concerns of the international community, faithfully perform its international obligations, handle the nuclear-contaminated water in the safest and most prudent way, including fully studying alternatives to ocean discharge, Mao urged.

Also, rather than whitewash its ocean discharge decision, Japan needs to fully subject itself to international oversight, and avoid, to the maximum extent possible, imposing unpredictable risks on the international community, Mao said.

March 28, 2023 Posted by | Environmentalism, Nuclear Power | , | Leave a comment

Japan’s Opposition Blasts PM Kishida’s Silence on Depleted Uranium Ammo to Ukraine

By Svetlana Ekimenko – Sputnik – 28.03.2023

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida paid a surprise visit to Ukraine to meet with Volodymyr Zelensky a day after Russian President Vladimir Putin hosted his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, in Moscow. Both visits came as the announcement of future DU ammo supplies to Ukraine hit the headlines.

Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has been condemned by the opposition for staying tight-lipped on the UK’s announced delivery of depleted uranium ammunition to the Kiev regime, according to media reports.

Taro Yamamoto, leader of the opposition party Reiwa Shinsengumi, is said to have raised the issue at a budget committee meeting in the Japanese parliament’s upper house.

“Mr Prime Minister, do you intend to encourage the UK not to send such shells?” the politician is cited as asking Kishida.

The head of the Japanese government ostensibly dodged giving a direct answer, saying something to the effect that, “despite studies on the negative effects on human health, no concrete results have been obtained”. However, Yamamoto would not let up, pressing further:

“Actually, such munitions could already be classified as nuclear weapons, … and it was found that there is a risk of cancer … Mr. Prime Minister, during your meeting with Zelensky, did you ask him not to use ammunition with depleted uranium?”

Kishida is said to have responded by saying that, “As for depleted uranium weapons, I didn’t say anything specific about it in my meeting with Zelensky.”

The opposition leader then slammed this response as sending a “bad message,” and added, as a parting “broadside”, that the Prime Minister himself was “from Hiroshima.”

The US dropped two atomic bombs – plutonium Fat Man and gun-type uranium Little Boy – on Nagasaki and Hiroshima in August 1945. The bombings killed between 129,000 and 226,000 people, mostly Japanese civilians. Neither Hiroshima nor Nagasaki hosted any key military installations whatsoever.

Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, who will chair the Group of Seven (G7) summit scheduled for May, visited Ukraine on March 21. He met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky a day after Chinese leader Xi Jinping visited Moscow to meet with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.

Kishida’s visit was seen by analysts as tailored to demonstrate that Japan is “the West’s reliable ally”. Even though Kishida embarked on his Kiev visit to show solidarity with Ukraine, Tokyo has been contributing less economic help to Ukraine than other countries of the so-called collective West. Japan has limited itself to sending things like bulletproof vests, helmets and some humanitarian aid. Exports of arms and military equipment in Japan is regulated by the Japanese Arms Export Ban, known as the Three Principles on Arms Exports that prohibit the provision of lethal weapons to other countries.

Earlier, London announced its intent to supply depleted uranium (DU) munitions to Kiev to be used in the US-led proxy war of the collective West against Russia in Ukraine. The announcement was met with broad condemnation from Moscow. Russia warned that DU compounds that remain in the soil after its use as part of projectiles, may be dangerous to humans, animals and the environment for a lengthy amount of time.

“The use of uranium ammunition will cause irreversible harm to the health of the military and civilian population of Ukraine, but NATO is ready to supply them to Kiev,” Lt. Gen. Igor Kirillov, the head of the radiation, chemical and biological defense troops of the Russian armed forces, said. He recounted that NATO unleashed about 40,000 shells containing over 15 tons of depleted uranium during the 1999 bombing of Yugoslavia.

March 28, 2023 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | Leave a comment

CNN admits America trying to use Ukraine conflict to ‘isolate’ China

By Drago Bosnic | March 10, 2023

It’s certainly no secret that the United States has been trying to foment yet another conflict in the immediate vicinity of its geopolitical adversaries. This is particularly true in regards to Russia and China, the only near-peer rivals capable of not only resisting, but also challenging Washington DC’s disastrous hegemony. It is precisely this that makes both superpowers prime targets for encirclement and destabilization, with the end goal being either their complete dismantlement or, at the very least, weakening to a point where they would be forced to accept US dominance without much (or any) opposition. To accomplish this, the belligerent thalassocracy has been using everything at its disposal, from false narratives disseminated by the massive mainstream propaganda machine to more “hard power” schemes such as weapons deliveries and (in)direct military involvement.

Most observers have always seen the connection between Russia and China or, more specifically, between their interests in Ukraine and Taiwan, respectively. These legitimate interests (primarily relating to, but not limited to security) have been targeted by the US and its numerous vassals. Both Moscow and Beijing are perfectly aware of this and are working towards building closer ties, especially on a strategic level, to counter escalating US aggression while maintaining their respective foreign policy frameworks, which aren’t always 100% convergent in every aspect. However, this does not impede their growing cooperation in any way, as can only be expected from truly sovereign nations. This is causing a tremendous amount of frustration in Washington DC, prompting it to mobilize its propaganda machine to try and tarnish the (Eur)Asian giants’ reputation.

A recent piece published by the infamous CNN perfectly illustrates the thinking behind US attempts to use the aforementioned crises against both Russia and China. Authored by Brad Lendon and titled “Ukraine war has made it easier for US to isolate China in the Pacific”, the analysis is an admission of sorts that Washington DC is pushing both conflicts.

Expectedly, the author claims that China is supposedly “backing” Russia just by virtue of Beijing’s continued refusal to join the political West’s siege of Moscow. Lendon claims that this perceived support has pushed Japan to double military spending and acquire long-range weapons from the US, while entirely ignoring the enormous pressure Tokyo has been exposed to in the last 12 months to “up the ante” and commit more of its increasingly depleted resources to the “defense of shared values”.

And while the author praised the new Japanese $320 billion remilitarization program, he harshly criticized China’s own regular military activities as “destabilizing”. This is just further proof that the incessant hypocrisy and double standards are the mainstays of US foreign policy. Lendon claims that “China’s actions are pushing the Asia-Pacific allies closer than ever before”, openly admitting that the Ukraine conflict is “very useful” for Washington DC in this regard. He then quoted the Chinese Premier Li Keqiang as saying: “The [Chinese] armed forces should intensify military training and preparedness across the board, develop new military strategic guidance, devote greater energy to training under combat conditions and make well-coordinated efforts to strengthen military work in all directions and domains.”

The CNN insists that the outgoing Chinese premier stated this as part of a government work report. Either way, the US is surprisingly open about its plans, with the recently revealed National Security Strategy (NSS) envisioning a greater strategic role for America’s numerous satellite states. While Donald Trump’s approach was more isolationist and focused on economic warfare, the Biden administration is showing much more belligerence, as well as a tendency to relegate portions of its power projection to allies and vassals such as the UK, Australia, Japan, etc. Somewhat surprisingly, Lendon claims that South Korea is now also joining the fray.

“Peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait is essential for peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and it’s indispensable for security and prosperity of the region as a whole,” South Korean Foreign Minister Park Jin told CNN recently.

This is somewhat uncommon for Seoul, which has previously been careful not to antagonize Beijing, with which it has extensive economic cooperation. If CNN’s claims are true, this would signal a dramatic strategic shift in the Asia-Pacific, further splitting the region along geopolitical fault lines and eroding decades of essentially unlimited economic cooperation. Perhaps this might be exactly what the US wants, as per CNN itself, but it might also backfire into yet another spectacular US foreign policy failure. Lendon insists that South Korea is worried about Pyongyang and that this is the main reason it is further integrating with the US-brokered anti-Chinese coalition.

However, it could be argued that it is precisely this action by Seoul that could escalate tensions between the North and the South, particularly if the latter further antagonizes and alienates Beijing, which has been playing quite a constructive role in defusing tensions in the Korean peninsula. The destabilization could also be exacerbated by South Korea repeatedly floating the idea of potentially acquiring its own nuclear weapons, a course of action the US has not shown any opposition to while still insisting the North should disarm. Needless to say, Pyongyang is not only refusing to comply with such a suicidal request, but is even expanding its strategic capabilities, much to the chagrin of Washington.

In conclusion, Lendon laments that the Ukrainian crisis “has not been helpful in one key American partnership in the Indo-Pacific, the informal Quad alliance linking the US, Japan, Australia and India”, as New Delhi, “unlike the other three members”, has not condemned Russia’s counteroffensive against NATO aggression in Europe. “When the US, Australia, and Japan tried to condemn Russia through a joint statement, India refused…

India claimed that the Quad only tackles Indo-Pacific challenges, and since Russia isn’t in the region, this topic cannot be broached,” the piece quoted Derek Grossman, a senior defense analyst at the infamous RAND Corporation. However, he added that “the split in the Quad doesn’t really distract from its focus, as the Quad is all about how to deal with China”, essentially admitting that America is still trying to compartmentalize its geopolitical approach in the region.

Drago Bosnic is an independent geopolitical and military analyst.

March 10, 2023 Posted by | Militarism | , , , , | 1 Comment

North Korea’s new ICBMs deter another US aggression

By Drago Bosnic | February 18, 2023

North Korea’s portrayal in the mainstream media is unflattering, to say the least. However, underestimating Pyongyang’s growing capabilities is wholly limited to the infowar arena, as the Pentagon is deeply alarmed by the DPRK’s latest show of force during the recent military parade commemorating the 75th anniversary of the founding of the KPA (Korean People’s Army). The country has shown an unprecedentedly diverse array of new weapons, including its rapidly growing arsenal of ICBMs (intercontinental range ballistic missiles). The “star of the show” was what appears to be a solid-fuel ICBM similar to the older Soviet/Russian “Topol”.

If true, it would mean that the incessant reporting about North Korea’s supposed “inability” to develop and field solid-fuel missiles is nothing but wishful thinking. And indeed, Pyongyang has made tremendous strides in developing a plethora of both strategic and tactical missiles and other weapons to ensure it could never be targeted with impunity. The people of North Korea still remember what certainly seemed like an apocalypse to them when American bombers laid waste to their cities, towns and villages, including the basic infrastructure and vitally important irrigation systems, which greatly contributed to famines in the following decades.

However, despite well over a million casualties caused by intentional US targeting of civilians, the truly terrifying possibility was the nearly initiated American plan to drop hundreds of nuclear weapons on the East Asian country. US Army General Douglas MacArthur, the overall commander of Western forces during the Korean War, planned using nuclear weapons to inflict a decisive defeat on North Korea. Luckily, this deranged idea was dropped due to fears of how the Soviet Union would react. Pyongyang soon became aware of the plan and decided to ensure it is never implemented by developing capabilities to retaliate.

And while the USSR provided a direct strategic umbrella, preventing further attacks on North Korea, the superpower’s unfortunate demise in the 1990s left Pyongyang’s security severely undermined. Over the next three decades, North Korea developed capabilities far exceeding the size of its population, economy and territory, effectively becoming what Alexander Mercouris of the Duran appropriately dubbed “the pocket superpower”. Developing such capabilities is certainly no easy feat even for global powers, while being virtually impossible for relatively small countries such as North Korea. And yet, DPRK is rather unique in this regard, being the only small country (besides Israel) with such weapons.

North Korea’s urgent need for deterrence has been repeatedly reinforced, including just several years ago, when the US came close to once again attacking the country on multiple occasions under both the Obama and Trump administrations in 2016 and 2017. The Pentagon’s war plans once more included the use of thermonuclear weapons, just like approximately 70 years earlier, but never materialized, thankfully. Pyongyang’s ability to “return the favor” forced the belligerent thalassocracy to take the military option “off the table”. The successful deployment of several ICBM types, as well as the adoption of MIRV (multiple independently targetable reentry vehicles) warheads presents an insurmountable obstacle for aggressive US strategists.

Military experts are now almost certain that the current DPRK arsenal would be sufficient to defeat America’s GMD ABM (anti-ballistic missile) system. The GMD (Ground-Based Midcourse Defense) currently employs 44 GBI (Ground-Based Interceptors), with four targeting each hostile ICBM to provide a 97% chance of interception (tested against hopelessly outdated, over half-century-old American “Minuteman 3” ICBMs). And while the quantity of thermonuclear warheads in North Korea’s possession is a closely guarded state secret, Pyongyang recently announced “an exponential enlargement” of its strategic forces, further reinforcing its previously precarious position.

Washington DC’s inability to intercept North Korean missiles has pushed it to consider “preventive attacks”. As Pyongyang’s entire strategic arsenal was thought of being composed exclusively of older-style liquid-fuel missiles (which take time to launch), the US believed it would have enough time to target all North Korean launch sites before the ICBMs are fired. However, Pyongyang has now demonstrated it has solid-fuel missiles (much shorter launch cycles, as there’s no need to fuel the missiles before launch), nullifying the possibility of such strikes. What’s more, numerous North Korean test launches of new depressed-trajectory missiles have proven impossible for America’s “Aegis” ABM system to even detect, let alone shoot down.

Japan, although already spending hundreds of billions of dollars on US-made ABM defenses such as “Aegis”, is now set to waste even more resources, although these exact systems have been completely powerless to intercept a single North Korean missile flying close to or even over its home islands. Worse yet, while those were relatively rudimentary ballistic missiles with largely predictable flight paths, in September 2021 Pyongyang also began flight testing HGVs (hypersonic glide vehicles), an area in which it takes precedence even over the US, which still lacks operational hypersonic weapons.

North Korea’s capability to obliterate American population centers is of utmost importance to prevent yet another brutal USAF firebombing that killed upwards of a third of its population in just three years (1950-1953). And while the notion may sound too harsh, the utterly barbaric US foreign policy and the incessant aggression against the world stand as a testament to the effectiveness of North Korea’s approach. Unfortunately, the ability to turn America into a giant radioactive glass desert is the only way to ensure the belligerent thalassocracy will think twice before attacking. And the American people should hold their political elites accountable for that state of affairs.

Drago Bosnic is an independent geopolitical and military analyst.

February 18, 2023 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , , | 1 Comment

New Asian contracts to double Russian gas project’s revenue – Reuters

RT | January 26, 2023

The Sakhalin-2 liquefied natural gas (LNG) project is expected to generate twice as much revenue in 2023 compared to its earnings before the Ukraine-related sanctions rained down on Russia’s energy sector, Reuters reported on Thursday, citing industry analysts.

The boost is attributed to long-term contracts with clients from the Asian region, along with higher global energy prices.

Renewed deals with Asian buyers are expected to secure demand for up to 6.5 million tons of the super-chilled fuel annually from Sakhalin 2, according to calculations by the agency and contractual volume data provided by the GIIGNL international group of LNG importers.

The contracts could earn up to $4.5 billion in revenue for Sakhalin 2 shareholders, which include state-run energy giant Gazprom and Japanese companies Mitsubishi and Mitsui, according to Masanori Odaka, a senior analyst on Rystad Energy’s gas and LNG team.

The enterprise is expected to generate another $7.45 billion in 2023 if production remains in line with 2022, while its sales on the spot market are retained at 4.9 million tons, Alexei Kokin, chief analyst at Russia’s Otkritie brokerage, told Reuters.

On Thursday, Sakhalin Energy, the operator of the project, said it produced 11.5 million tons of LNG and some 3.7 million tons of its Sakhalin blend crude oil at the Sakhalin-2 facilities in 2022, exceeding its production plan. That is 10% more than the project produced in the previous year.

The company had managed to continue production despite “a period of unprecedented pressure from external factors on production and economic activity,” according to Andrey Oleinikov, Sakhalin Energy’s managing director.

According to the company’s statement, LNG and oil shipments in 2022 were delivered to the buyers on time in full compliance with the terms of Stock Purchase Agreement, while its production remained on schedule. The major markets for exports are Japan, China, South Korea and Indonesia, Sakhalin Energy said.

January 26, 2023 Posted by | Economics | , , , , | Leave a comment

Will Japan and India become permanent members of the UN Security Council?

By Petr Konovalov – New Eastern Outlook – 14.01.2023

On December 12, 2022 in London, during a meeting of the British Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, its head, James Cleverly, said that he was in favor of expanding the number of permanent members of the UN Security Council (UNSC) by including Japan, India, Brazil and Germany.

The British diplomat believes that the current world order allows a much larger number of people to live much better than before, but today it needs some changes. According to Cleverly, the UK is interested in reflecting the needs of as many countries as possible in the UN. He also noted that the inclusion of Japan, Brazil, India and Germany would allow London to expand interaction with these countries and thus accelerate the growth of global prosperity.

The British Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs said that the established system of international relations, which was approved as a result of the victory of the Allies after the Second World War, is allegedly outdated due to the fact that since 1950 the volume of world trade has increased by about 40 times, which has led to a radical change in the balance of power in the world. Furthermore, he emphasized that demographic changes had also made their own adjustments to the modern world order.

The rhetoric of the British leadership is quite logical. The UK no longer represents the military and economic power that it used to be during the second half of the previous century. London is aware that it needs allies to support it internationally. The countries listed by James Cleverly, which, in his opinion, should become permanent members of the UN Security Council, maintain close relations with the US and the UK and are highly likely to pursue a common policy with London and Washington on many issues.

In accordance with the norms of international law, the UN Charter can be revised only with the unanimous consent of all the permanent members of the UN Security Council. France, which is a permanent member of the UN Security Council and is loyal to the policy pursued by Washington and London, will support the proposal of the UK, however, Russia and China, who are also permanent members of the UN Security Council, may not approve its expansion, as this may upset their geopolitical plans.

Russia welcomes the inclusion of India and Brazil in the list of permanent members of the UN Security Council. The Russian Federation has fairly warm relations with these states, and it is unlikely that Moscow will have any international disputes with them in the foreseeable future. Back in 2010, Russian President Vladimir Putin, who was serving as Prime Minister of the Russian Federation that year, during a meeting with Indian diplomats, said that India should be included in the list of permanent members of the UN Security Council. Subsequently, the Russian president has always adhered to this rhetoric. As for Russian-Brazilian relations, they have always been at a high level, and Lula da Silva, elected for the third time as President of Brazil in October 2022, is known for his pro-Russian views. During the previous presidency of Lula da Silva, the international organization BRICS was created (in 2006), which includes Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. Consequently, the Russian Federation is likely to approve the inclusion of Brazil in the list of permanent members of the UN Security Council.

However, the Kremlin has a negative stance when it comes to the inclusion of Germany and Japan in the list of permanent members of the UN Security Council, since these states are pursuing an unfriendly policy towards Russia, and Tokyo completely casts doubt on the territorial integrity of the Russian Federation, claiming control over the Kuril Islands.

It should be noted that the inclusion of Germany, Brazil, Japan and India in the list of permanent members of the UN Security Council is not beneficial for China either, since these states maintain good relations with the United States and will adhere to a pro-American position in numerous international disputes.

Germany and Brazil are in close economic relations with London and Washington and therefore, with a high degree of probability, they will act in the interests of the US and the UK if they become permanent members of the UN Security Council. Of course, China will prevent such a development of events.

In China, the memory of Japan’s war crimes against the Chinese population during the Second World War is still fresh. Beijing also disapproves of Tokyo’s pro-American policy and is wary of the impressive number of US military installations in Japan.

Relations between Beijing and New Delhi are also at a fairly low level. India and China are competing for influence in places like Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. The Chinese authorities do not want the strengthening of Indian international influence and will do everything in their power to prevent India from being included in the list of permanent members of the UN Security Council.

It is important to emphasize that skirmishes have periodically occurred between Indian and Chinese border guards over the past 45 years. As recently as December 9, 2022, another conflict broke out between the military of China and India along the Indian line of actual control in the Tawang district in the west of the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh in an area of the disputed territory. As a result of the collision, the military personnel of the two countries were slightly injured.

Despite the rationality of the idea of expanding the list of permanent members of the UN Security Council, Russia and China are unlikely to take such a step. Russia will not vote for granting this privilege to Germany and Japan, which today openly support the Ukrainian army participating in hostilities against the Russian Armed Forces. In turn, China is not interested in increasing the clout in the international arena of Tokyo and New Delhi, which are on cool terms with Beijing. Also, China will not give an opportunity to Germany and Brazil to become permanent members of the UN Security Council since both countries sympathize with the policies of the states of the Western bloc. As noted above, without the unanimous consent of all the permanent members of the UN Security Council, changes in the norms of international law are impossible.

The West is pursuing its own interests and engaging in geopolitical confrontation with China through the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QUAD), which includes Australia, the US, Japan and India. Within the framework of this organization, annual military exercises of the participating countries are held.

On May 24, 2022, a QUAD summit was held in Tokyo, the main agenda of which, according to Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, was to discuss how to counter the growth of China’s influence in East and Southeast Asia.

As it stands now, there will be no expansion in the number of countries that are permanent members of the UN Security Council any time soon, since this comes into conflict with the plans of several current permanent members of the UN Security Council. However, the absence of Japan and India in the UN Security Council is offset by their participation in the QUAD, as well as their close cooperation with the United States in the field of defense.

January 14, 2023 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , , , , | 1 Comment