Thursday, March 28, 2013

3/27/2013 How far Will The Dragon Swim?


The Dancing Idiot Dragons China and Her Mad Cap Pup North Korea. Image from ancient print in the public domain published by


NAMAZU Japanese giant catfish and former demigod now maritime analyst

Greetings peace loving bipeds and I certainly don't mean the Chinese and their mad as a hatter cousins the North Koreans. If you read the posts so far this week you know both the Chinese Navy  and Coast Guard like organizations and the North Korean military including their naval forces have been out and about bullying their neighbors with diligence and fervor since Sunday and continuing on through today with no regard by recent "push back" moves by Japan, the Philippines, and the United States.( See "China Conducts Landing Exercises In disputed Areas" AP story:   and "North Korea Has cut Last Military Hotline With South" )                                                                                                             

It seems like measures like ship deployments, military drills and increases in defense budgets only spur on China and North Korea to more aggressive moves on neighboring maritime territories. Today's headlines are, if anything, more alarming than yesterdays. As a three thousand year old former demigod I've had a pretty detailed view of history. Modern history especially the last two centuries features the United States prominently and since the end of World War II predominantly. One thing that I have learned about America in the last two centuries that China and North Korea don't seem to "get" is that America is never as strong, or as weak, as she appears at any given moment. 

 At the moment China and North Korea mistakenly believe that America is exceptionally weak, and they show a serious under estimation of the military power of Japan, South Korea, and the Philippines. They also seriously underestimate the resolve of the Japanese and Philippine people to resist aggression and the resolve of the United States to honor its defensive pacts. Continued aggressive naval maneuver by China and North Korea will  eventually bring on a miscalculation or mistake by an in the field commander that results in war.  India should be paying close attention. Just as China wants the "First Island Chain" in the South and East China Seas including territories that are clearly in the lawful possession of Japan, the Philippines, and Vietnam, they covet what they call the string of Pearls in the Indian Ocean.
China is playing a game of divide and conquer, after it conquers the "First Island Chain" it has every intention of dominating the Indian Ocean and taking certain northern territories of India. India needs to get off the fence and formally align with a Japanese, Philippine, Australian, U.S. coalition and be prepared to block the Indian Ocean out lets and even send units into the China seas when war breaks out for the "First Island Chain".

 North Korea has long been in the hands of completely insane people. Forget any consideration of "no first use nuclear weapons policy" . North Korea has already threatened the United States with nuclear attack. If war breaks out the United States has never signed any international "No First use" policy and now we see why. They aren't worth the paper they are written on. If a nation state has already threatened another nation state with a nuclear strike the threatened state has every moral right and international legal right to destroy the war starting state's nuclear arsenal on opening day. The North Korean threat is very different from China's veiled threat against Australia if it joins the U.S. in defending Japan or its own forces in the region. China allowed a relatively junior military officer to suggest that possibility in a academic paper widely circulated in the region. This signals a possible real intent of the Chinese government but gives them plausible deniability. The United States and South Korea must reconcile themselves now to the use of at least tactical nuclear weapons on a first strike basis if North Korea attempts to over run the South. If North Korea makes good on its threat to so much as fire a strategic nuclear weapon on either American or South Korea territory their own capital must be immediately be taken out by an American strategic nuclear strike. North Korea must be totally defeated and all of her war making capability destroyed in 72 hours because China may break out behind the hostilities to take what is not hers in "the First Island Chain". As long as the United states and Japan do not attempt to conquer the Chinese mainland there is a hope of containing such a war to a non nuclear naval contest.

 Unlike North Korea China is not ruled by absolute mad men but is a Confucian society whether you call it communist or the "Middle Kingdom. Confucian societies are ruled from the top down and a great deal of energy is spent keeping the masses below in line.  Much of the maritime muscle flexing is actually a distraction for the populace, getting them worked up over something other than the communist misrule. Despite the rise of many wealthy people under China's new state capitalism, most Chinese live in a poverty unknown in the West. The gap between rich and poor , as bad as it is in the United States, is but a pale shadow of the gap in China. But to be Confucian or authoritarian is not to be crazy, just ineffective and capable of great cruelty. While China has badly miscalculated the strength and resolve of her neighbors and is not responding to "push back"; The Chinese leadership is far less likely to commit national suicide than the crazy leadership of North Korea. They may sacrifice their new Navy and Coast Guard but may well cut losses at that point if left a way out. Regime change in China should never be the goal of any U.S led alliance unless only such threat can bring the current leadership to the bargaining table. Even if all of the Chinese Communist leadership are eventually taken out and hanged by the populace the next regime will also be Confucian and will turn authoritarian, its in the social genetic make up, was thousands of years evolving, and won't be changed in the course of a single human life time. 

 Its time for the United States, Japan, the Philippines, Australia and India to embrace the madness. Only if you make all out preparations and alliances for war with China and North Korea can you have any hope of avoiding it. Only if you plan, exercise and coordinate now can you have any hope of concluding such a war with minimal damage to all sides and a quick return to peace, with a Korea that unfortunately must be reduced to a parking lot almost immediately into the conflict. China will emerge hopefully intact but without sea power and in economic ruin as the allies repudiate their national debts to her since without invasion they are unlikely to exact war reparations. You must counter the Dragon's divide and conquer scheme with solidarity,  preparation, and a manifest willingness to fight. You must counter their blatant or veiled threats of nuclear strikes with the clear warning that such threats make a preemptive strike likely. Do not assume any help from NATO , the EU, or Canada. The Middle East will break out just as China and the North Koreans do. NATO including its U.S. Navy contribution will be needed to keep a lid on the Middle East as will a portion of the Indian Fleet. The United states will have to utilize only its Pacific Fleet, India will probably have to divide its fleet Japan is able to give it her full attention, The Philippines are stronger than the Dragon thinks. Besides one thing the United States knows about the Philippines that we learned in WWII and that the Dragon doesn't seem to know is the unusual bravery, tenacity, endurance, and resolve of the Philippine people and their hatred for tyranny. Attention  freedom loving bipeds of the Pacific the hour is now, either all hang together or surely you will all hang separately with the dragon officiating at the gallows. Go to a war footing now. But remember you have to let the Dragon fire the first shot, that's the modern international society's view of war, he who shoots first no matter the provocation is the war monger. However, in the coming weeks, make it crystal clear that the price of aggression is North Korea converted to a parking lot for South Korea and an artificial reef where a once promising Chinese Navy and Coast Guard roamed, AT A MINIMUM. 

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