Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

My Critical Elements v Your Chips

by Oui Tue Jul 4th, 2023 at 08:21:01 AM EST

President Joe Biden meets with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, Jan. 17, 2023.

During a brief appearance in front of reporters before their meeting, Biden said he and Rutte have been working on "how to keep a free and open Indo-Pacific" to "meet the challenges of China."

"Simply put, our companies, our countries, have been so far just lockstep in what we've done, and our vision for the future. So today, I look forward to discussing how we can further deepen our relationship and securing our supply chains to strengthen our transatlantic partnership," he added.

The old men in the Oval Office follows the course set out by his predecessor ... and with more vigour. All options are on his desk where the buck stops, after his death? Next generations ...

Punishing Sanctions | MofA |

Xi to Biden:

Do you really want to hamper our chip producing companies?


    China slaps export curbs on chipmaking metals in tech war warning to U.S, Europe | CNBC |

    China ordered export restrictions on two technology-critical elements in retaliation for new Western sanctions on its semiconductor industry.

    The restrictions, which take effect on August 1, will apply to gallium and germanium metals and several of their compounds, which are key materials for making semiconductors and other electronics.

    The Ministry of Commerce said in a statement that the export controls on gallium- and germanium-related items were necessary "to safeguard national security and interests".

Game on!

The effect of Antony Blinken "diplomacy" undone by Joe within the first 24 hours ...

Lap kitten Dutch PM Mark Rutte vying for a nice appointment in Washington DC ahead of retirement, had strictly followed orders from his boss in the White House.

ASML hit with new Dutch limits on chip gear exports to China | Japan Times |

Previously ...

Window of Opportunity Closing Fast | Jan. 29, 2023 |

Dutch far-right conservative PM Mark Rutte agreed with Joe Biden in White House pow-wow to block sales of ASML advanced chip lithography machines to China to avoid crippling sanctions by uncle Joe ... poster "I Want You" has been upgraded.

Biden's Quid pro Quo

A misleading headline as the Biden administration already put sanctions in place to ban the export of ASML's most advanced chip lithography machines to China last year.

No Progress on Netherlands Joining US Chip-Export Ban to China | Voice of America |

Related reading one year ago ...

Taiwan Target of Global Technology

History of the rise ASML in Eindhoven

Centers of Learning - Brainport Eindhoven

Next, will ASML relocate to the New World? Unlimited dreams.

The Trump years, threats and close friend Rutte ...

Trump Puts Max Pressure On Ally PM Rutte | Jan. 10, 2020 |

Even a Rutte promise to help bomb Iran, won't cut dice in today's dilemma ...

Trade relations between China and the Netherlands would be damaged if Dutch semiconductor equipment supplier ASML is not allowed to ship its newest machines to China, Beijing's ambassador to the Netherlands was quoted as saying.

Reuters reported last week that the Netherlands had withheld the licence ASML needs to export its newest machines to China following pressure from the U.S. government.

Dutch company caught in crossfire of Sino-US feud for tech supremacy ...

Exclusive: ASML chip tool delivery to China delayed amid US ire | Nikkei Asian Review - Nov. 6, 2019 |

Europe's largest manufacturer of specialized chipmaking machines, has fallen prey to Washington's desire to curb Beijing's technological ascent and delayed shipment of a crucial tool needed to develop China's semiconductor industry, the Nikkei Asian Review has learned.

ASML's move comes as the U.S. carefully scrutinizes all major companies in Chinese tech supply chains, such as Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., the world's largest chipmaker, which supplies chips to Huawei, the Chinese tech company that the U.S. has accused of spying.

Biden announces raft of new deals with Modi amid calls to address human rights concerns |The Guardian |

A handful of lawmakers boycotted the Indian prime minister's address to Congress, while protesters gathered near the White House

Joe Biden has pronounced the US-India relationship never stronger and rolled out a series of new business deals on the second day of the Indian prime minister's state visit, but Narendra Modi's trip has been marked with controversy as many call for Biden to address India's continuing crackdown on religious and press freedoms.

An official state visit is the highest-ranked diplomatic invitation extended to a foreign leader and is a sign of the US president's national security priorities as his administration courts India as a partner against China.

In a joint news conference with Modi, Biden called the relationship between the US and India among the most consequential in the world and "more dynamic than at any time in history."

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Tue Jul 4th, 2023 at 12:52:53 PM EST
U.S. Provoked Conflict In Europe

The United States provoked a conflict in Ukraine to "turn Europe into a vassal" and has managed to use the Ukraine crisis to "destabilise Europe." [_link] pic.twitter.com/u0YNAOim03
    -- China Xinhua News (@XHNews) April 26, 2023

Latest post by Cat on "Yuan or Dollar" ...

My Good Friends Are A Dictator

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Tue Jul 4th, 2023 at 12:55:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Xi urges Shanghai alliance to 'safeguard regional peace'

China's Xi Jinping urged Russian, Iranian and other leaders on Tuesday to work towards safeguarding "regional peace" as he addressed a virtual summit of their Shanghai alliance. Xi "called for efforts to safeguard regional peace and ensure common security", state news agency Xinhua said, adding that he urged member states of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation to "follow the right direction and enhance their solidarity and mutual trust". Russian President Vladimir Putin also addressed the meeting, his first summit since a short-lived mutiny last month after the head of the Wagner mercenary group, Yevgeny Prigozhin, led a failed rebellion against the Kremlin.

Iran formally becomes full member of SCO

Iran, one of India's neighbours in its extended neighbourhood, has formally become a full member of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who on Tuesday chaired the SCO Summit virtually, said Iran is going to join as new member of the organization and also welcomed the signing of the Memorandum of Obligation for the SCO membership of Belarus. "I am happy that today Iran is going to join the SCO family as a new member. For this, I convey my best wishes to President Ebrahim Raisi and the people of Iran. Also, we welcome the signing of the memorandum of obligation for Belarus' SCO membership," PM Modi said at the summit.

    You all would have heard PM Modi's remarks. To briefly capture a sense of it, PM underlined India's contribution to SCO, especially in the last 6 years, as a Member State...highlighted the need to work together to eliminate the menace of terrorism in the region & globally...Fight against terrorism as the basic mandate of SCO still remains a central goal of SCO something that was underlined by the PM and echoed in the room by the other countries.
    Foreign secretary Vinay Kwatra

Kazakhstan urges closer energy cooperation within SCO

Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev called on Tuesday for closer energy cooperation within the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) which includes Russia, China and India and is preparing to admit Iran. Tokayev told a virtual meeting of SCO leaders that Kazakhstan was ready to host an SCO energy conference and proposed developing a joint energy strategy for the organization over the next year.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Tue Jul 4th, 2023 at 12:58:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Iran formally becomes full member of SCO, PM Modi conveys best wishes to President Ebrahim Raisi | Times of India - LIVE! |

The SCO summit is all set to welcome Iran as the new permanent member of the organization. Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov on Friday said "the full membership of Iran" would be approved at the summit. Iran has intensified its diplomacy with friends and foes alike in recent months, seeking to reduce its isolation, improve its economy and project strength.

"This membership is beneficial both for Iran and for the organisation," Iran's foreign ministry spokesman Nasser Kanani said on Monday, saying it would have "positive effects on economic development" between member nations.

Belarus will sign a memorandum of obligations which will lead to its membership later.
The SCO has emerged as one of the largest transregional international organizations, with a significant focus on economic and security matters. India assumed the rotating chairmanship of the SCO at the Samarkand Summit on September 16 last year.

The virtual summit will also be attended by heads of the SCO secretariat and the SCO RATS (Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure). The summit's theme, "Towards a SECURE SCO," was coined by PM Modi at the 2018 SCO summit, with SECURE standing for Security, Economy and Trade, Connectivity, Unity, Respect for Sovereignty and Territorial Integrity, and Environment.
The summit has invited heads of six international and regional organizations, including the UN, Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Nations), CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States), CSTO (Collective Security Treaty Organization), EAEU (Eurasian Economic Union), and CICA (Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia).

SCO must not hesitate to criticise countries supporting terrorism: PM Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said that some countries use cross-border terrorism as an instrument of their policy and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) must not hesitate to criticise them. "Some countries use cross-border terrorism as instrument in sync with their policy. SCO must not hesitate to criticise such countries," PM Modi said while virtually addressing the SCO summit. Pakistan PM Shehbaz Sharif, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese leader Xi Jinping were among those who were present at the summit hosted by India.

India's thousands of years old cultural and people-to-people ties with Eurasia living testimony to our shared heritage: PM Modi.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Tue Jul 4th, 2023 at 12:59:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
President Xi has articulated the greatest common denominator of SCO: Global Times editorial | Global Times Editorial |

On July 4, the 23rd Meeting of the Council of Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) was held. President Xi Jinping delivered an important speech titled "Staying true to our founding mission and advancing unity and coordination to realize greater development." He pointed out that sustaining peace and security is our common responsibility, promoting economic growth is a common task for all countries in the region, and all nations in the region aspire to see harmonious development of different civilizations. Human society faces unprecedented challenges, and to the questions raised by our times, President Xi's answer is: the people's wish for a happy life is our goal, and peace, development and win-win cooperation are the unstoppable trends of the times.


In this important speech, President Xi also emphasized the "right direction" for the SCO, which encompasses two specific aspects. First, regarding internal interactions, China advocates for "bridging differences through dialogue, and replacing competition with cooperation." We should truly respect each other's core interests and major concerns, and firmly support each other's endeavor for development and rejuvenation. Second, the speech addresses the correct way to interact with the external world, with the core principle being "independence and autonomy." We must be highly vigilant against external attempts to foment a "new Cold War" or camp-based confrontation in our region. The future of our development must be held firmly in our own hands. This not only represents the right direction advocated by China but also condensed the successful practices of the SCO over the years.

President Xi's important speech encapsulates the greatest common denominator of the SCO and comprehensively addresses the core demands of member countries, thereby generating widespread resonance.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Tue Jul 4th, 2023 at 06:59:07 PM EST
Via my diary in 2022:

2 charts show how much the world depends on Taiwan for semiconductors | CNBC - 2021 |

TSMC founder Morris Chang backs U.S. on China chip curbs | Nikkei Asia - March 2023 |

Taiwanese chip industry titan Morris Chang said he supports U.S. attempts to slow China's chip development progress, but also said Washington has left the island out of its vision of "friendshoring," or shifting semiconductor production to friendly countries.

The founder and former chairman of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. was speaking at a panel discussion in Taipei with "Chip War" author Chris Miller on Thursday, where he also warned that chip production costs in the U.S. could end up being twice as high as in Taiwan.

Taiwan quietly urges U.S. to calm rhetoric on China chip dangers | The Japan Times - April 21, 2023 |

Why Taiwan Matters - From TSMC to Other Multinational Companies

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), headquartered in Taiwan, China, was founded in 1987 and is the world's largest chip foundry and the largest professional integrated circuit manufacturing service company. Adhering to a differentiation strategy, TSMC focuses on five major markets: smartphones, high-efficiency operation, Internet of Things, vehicle-used electronics, and consumer electronics products.

In 2022, the annual revenue exceeded USD 75.8 billion, a record high for 13 consecutive years, and net profit after tax exceeded USD 34 billion, an increase of 33.5%. As of April 2023, the company's market capitalization is approximately USD 438.9 billion, a cumulative increase of nearly 300 times since its listing.

TSMC can help 'stabilize' U.S.-China relations: chairman | Nikkei Asia - June 6, 2023 |

TSMC CEO Mark Liu argues thriving chip industry will have positive effect on geopolitics

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Tue Jul 4th, 2023 at 07:42:33 PM EST
Until the war, Ukraine produced around half of the global supply of high-purity neon, according to analysts. Production was mainly at a Cryoin facility in Odessa and an Ingas plant in Mariupol, a city now sadly destroyed by bombing.

Ukrainian companies have stopped supplying neon, which could lead to a new crisis in semiconductor production | March 13, 2022 |

One year later ...

Business Avoided and Fixed Neon Shortage From Russia-Ukraine War

... when its expensive or short in supply: don't waste it .. capture and recycle.

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Wed Jul 5th, 2023 at 07:19:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]

TSMC complains it can't find enough skilled workers to get its Arizona chip plants ready in time, delaying mass production to 2025

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Fri Jul 21st, 2023 at 05:36:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Indulging in Bluster With China, the Modi Government Is Overplaying its Foreign Policy Hand | The Wire - May 3, 2023 |

Believing its own rhetoric of major power status, and hence China's peer competitor, India thought it could, like the US, combat, compete and cooperate on its own terms with China. But is that true?

Conscious that it had tarnished its domestic image of fearless leadership, India signed the fourth and last US military's foundation agreement - Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement - by which the Indian military became part of US Indo-Pacific Command (USPACOM) in the last days of the Donald Trump administration. When the Joe Biden administration came into office with guns blazing on China, he elevated the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QUAD) comprising India, Japan, Australia and the US to highest political level as the guidance forum for containing China's rise. This included QUAD nations combat patrols (operations) in support of USPACOM's defence network (called integrated deterrence) tasked with ensuring rules-based order in the Indo-Pacific region.


There are two big differences in the two security architectures. One, the US's integrated deterrence is meant to guard the rules-based order where `rules' have never been spelt out, since they are made and unmade by the US with no higher authority to check US's wars and arbitrary economic sanctions. On the other hand, China and Russia as the original big powers of SCO maintain that `collective security' will work under the United Nations (UN) where no single nation, however powerful, would decide on wars and sanctions.

To emphasise the central role of the UN, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced a new Global Security Initiative (GSI) at the Boao conference in Beijing in April 2022. The GSI was a follow-on to Xi's announcement of the Global Development Initiative (GDI) made at the UN General Assembly in September 2021. Since the UN endorsed China's BRI as compatible with and essential for accomplishment of its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) announced in 2015 and to be completed in 2030, China got the opportunity to introduce the GDI and GSI which are other names for the BRI (meant to deliver prosperity and cooperative security) at the world stage.

And two, collective security talks of inclusive and indivisible security with no zero-sum game where one wins at the cost of the other. While SCO will be its main forum for multilateral security discussions and military exercises, the participating nations would be free to form bilateral security arrangements. For example, one of the key roles of the PLA is to protect Chinese infrastructure, people and interests in BRI nations which would be done by mutual agreements.

The US's integrated deterrence, according to China and Russia, is an exclusive club which seeks to integrate numerous blocs like QUAD, AUKUS (Australia, the UK and US; since France has joined it lately, it is now being referred to as FUKUS), ASEAN, Pacific Islands Forum, Indian Ocean Rim Association and NATO which is becoming global. Unlike the US, which is creating new blocs to support its integrated deterrence strategy, the SCO membership is growing voluntarily. Iran is slated to join as the ninth member at the SCO summit this year; Afghanistan, Mongolia and Belarus have observer status; and many dialogue partners like Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Egypt and Qatar are waiting to be elevated.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Wed Jul 5th, 2023 at 06:17:29 AM EST
BRICS (2009 FTA): CN, RU, BR, IN, ZA; AR*, DZ*, EG*, ID*, IR*, CM*, ML*, SN*, TH*, UZ*, FJ*, ET*, KZ*, TN*, BD*

SCO (2001 NGO): CN, RU, IN, PK, KZ, KG, TJ, UZ, IR, AM*, AF*, AZ*, BY*, TR*, LK*, KH*, SA*, EG*, MY*, MV*, KW*, AE*

BOAO (2001 NGO): AU, JP, BD, BN, CM, CN, IN, ID, IR, KZ, KG, LA, MY, MN, MM, NP, PK, PH, KR, SG, LK, TJ, TH, TM, UZ, VN; (2016) NZ, MV, IL

* observer, dialogue, or applicant member

by Cat on Wed Jul 5th, 2023 at 07:35:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
voiceofeurope  reuters| Algeria officially applies to join BRICS alliance, 22 July
Algeria [.DZ] has applied to join the BRICS group and submitted a request to become a shareholder member of BRICS [New Development] Bank with an amount of $1.5 billion, Ennahar TV quoted Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune as saying.
New Development Bank | Articles of Agreement
New Development Bank | Capital Structure & Subscription
It added that Tebboune said at the end of his visit to China that Algeria had sought to join the BRICS to open new economic opportunities.
President Xi Jinping Holds Talks with Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune, 18 July
President Xi noted that this year marks the 65th anniversary of diplomatic relations between China and Algeria....
President Xi underscored the importance of the two sides supporting each other on issues of core interests....

President Xi expressed China's readiness to work with Algeria to accelerate the implementation of the outcomes of the first China-Arab States Summit, advance the eight major initiatives of practical cooperation between China and Arab states, strengthen cooperation under the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), and deliver on the outcomes of the FOCAC Dakar conference, with a view to building a community with a shared future in the new era between China and Arab states and between China and Africa.....

President Tebboune said that China is the most important friend and partner of Algeria....

The two sides issued a Joint Statement of the People's Republic of China and the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria.

mfa.gov.dz | Algeria, China sign 2nd five-year comprehensive strategic cooperation plan 2022-2026

ancient history
Articles of Agreement, International Monetary Fund (1944) p 42 USD quota, Top 10 asc. order:
US, UK (+ Geo.IV INR), USSR*, CN, FR, CA, NL, BE, AU, BR
IMF (1962-1971): BE, CA, CH, FR, DE, IT, JP, NL, SE , UK, US
IMF (1999-2016)SDR allocation: USD, EUR (DE/DM, FR/F, IT/L, NL/FL), JPY, GBP, RMB (2016)
IMF (2023 SDR shareholder wght): G7 (USD, EUR (DE, FR, IT, EC, EUCO), GBP, JPY), RMB, + 158 clients

* Russian Federation application 1992

by Cat on Sun Jul 23rd, 2023 at 02:44:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Prospects for a multipolar world order | GIS - June 2023 |

As the world's most populous country, India's growth rate sits at around 6 percent. This implies almost a doubling of its gross domestic product over the next decade, potentially increasing from $3.2 trillion to $6.4 trillion - a figure still significantly behind where the U.S. (at $35-40 trillion) or China (at $25 trillion) should be by 2030. India's primary vulnerability lies in its energy resource deficit. Climate change will precipitate conditions there that approach the limits of human endurance. Social gaps between rich and poor are rife, exacerbated by persistent caste divisions. The nation's education system remains inadequate for its global leadership aspirations.

India's soft power is weak. None of its many languages hold international sway, and its literature and media exert relatively little influence beyond its borders. India has found success in services, particularly in skilled sectors. Religiously, Hinduism is a national (if not nationalist) religion, increasingly intolerant of Islam. Like China, India faces social tension and environmental degradation. Its main social issue is not a labor shortage but a lack of sufficient job creation. The rupee has lost over 50 percent of its value compared to the U.S. dollar, and direct foreign investment in India was $85 billion in 2022, a figure dwarfed by China's $500 billion-plus.

India initiated the Non-Aligned Movement in the 1950s and historically leaned toward the Soviet Union, which supported it over Kashmir and during the war that led to the creation of Bangladesh. The Indian armed forces' hardware is 80 percent Russian-made, and the country still depends on Moscow for spare parts, training and upgrades. Today, India buys 45 percent of its defense equipment from Russia and 28 percent from the U.S. Without a robust domestic defense industry, India will not become a powerbroker in its own right.

Despite India proving itself as a stable democracy, with peaceful transfers of power and fluctuating political parties, the reality today is less inspiring. Corruption is widespread among politicians, votes are frequently bought and election rigging is not uncommon.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Wed Jul 5th, 2023 at 09:23:45 AM EST
I think the plainly two-faced behavior of the Wolf Warrior losers on social media tells you all you need to know about them.  Bunch of whiners.  Russians with Spicy Food.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.
by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Wed Jul 5th, 2023 at 03:53:08 PM EST
Ready? Steady... Go!

defense.gov | DOD Enters Agreement to Expand Domestic Manufacturing and Strengthen U.S. Cobalt Supply Chains, 15 June

The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Industrial Base Policy (OASD(IBP)), through its Manufacturing Capability Expansion and Investment Prioritization (MCEIP) office entered an agreement with Jervois Mining USA, a subsidiary of Jervois Global Limited, to conduct feasibility studies to expand cobalt extraction in Idaho.

The $15 million agreement, entered into under Defense Production Act (DPA) Title III authorities and utilizing funds appropriated by the Additional Ukraine Supplemental Appropriations Act, will enable Jervois to undertake mineral resource drilling that will accelerate the improved definition and expansion of currently known cobalt resources at Jervois's Idaho Cobalt Operations (ICO) and the adjacent Sunrise deposit and studies to assess a domestic U.S. cobalt refinery. The project is a critical step in the U.S. effort to decrease reliance on overseas sources of strategic and critical minerals....

rollcall | NDAA takes aim at critical mineral supply chain, 30 June
...Cobalt, for example, is a component in high-temperature sections of jet engines and industrial gas turbines. Tungsten is used in armor-penetrating projectiles as well as aircraft weights and counterweights. Rare earth metals have specific, crucial uses too: Samarium is used in permanent magnets for tank navigation; lanthanum is used in infrared-absorbing glass for night vision goggles. < wipes tears > A single F-35 Lightning II joint strike fighter requires 920 pounds [!] of rare earth materials, a 2013 Congressional Research Service report concluded.
archived plutonium pits for Granholm (26.04.23)
That level of dependence has lawmakers worried amid worsening relations with Beijing and broader efforts by the United States to decouple certain parts of the U.S. supply from China. The fiscal 2023 defense policy bill boosted the National Defense Stockpile by $1 billion specifically to acquire critical minerals. And the 2022 climate, tax and health care law Inflation Reduction Act created a tax credit to encourage the domestic production of critical minerals used in renewable energy generation, storage, and related manufacturing.
whitehouse | Press Briefing by Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre (05.07.23)

...Sebastian: Thank you.  Do you have any comment or confirmation on -- there was a report in the -- in the Wall Street Journal that the U.S. is looking to restrict Chinese access to cloud computing?...

Meanwhile, the Senate NDAA would strengthen domestic production of strategic and critical materials, according to a summary released by the Senate Armed Services Committee. It would also provide "additional flexibilities and authorities" through the Strategic and Critical Materials Stockpiling Act, a decades-old law that provides the statutory basis for amassing certain substances, and require the National Nuclear Security Administration to establish a supply chain reliability assurance program for critical materials....
Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin's Regular Press Conference on July 5, 2023
AFP: A Chinese figure said that export controls on gallium and germanium are only the beginning of China's countermeasures. He said if high-tech restrictions on China continue to escalate, China's countermeasures will also further escalate. Can you tell us what other measures China plans to take? 
Wang Wenbin: I am not aware of relevant person's remarks you mentioned. The Ministry of Commerce of China issued a notice on imposing export restrictions on industrial products and materials containing gallium and germanium recently, and my colleague answered a similar question yesterday, which you may refer to.

I would like to reiterate that industrial products and materials containing gallium and germanium apparently can be used for both military and civilian purposes. It is international customary practice to impose export control over industrial products and materials containing gallium and germanium and EU members have also imposed export control over relevant products and materials. The Chinese government adopted relevant export control in accordance with law to make sure these products and materials are used for legal purposes and the export control does not target any specific country. ...

euractiv | Companies race to secure supplies after China restricts gallium, germanium exports, 5 July
Monday's abrupt announcement of [capital?] controls from 1 August on exports of some gallium and germanium products has ramped up a trade war with the United States and could potentially cause more disruption to global supply chains.
archived House panel leaders want Raimondo to fight China's Micron chip ban
The [embargo?], which China said were aimed at protecting national security and interests, will require exporters to seek permission to ship some gallium and germanium products. China's controls will apply to eight gallium-related products: gallium antimonide, gallium arsenide, gallium metal, gallium nitride, gallium oxide, gallium phosphide, gallium selenide and indium gallium arsenide. They will also apply to six germanium products: germanium dioxide, germanium epitaxial growth substrate, germanium ingot, germanium metal, germanium tetrachloride and zinc germanium phosphide.
The European Commission expressed concern, while Germany's Economy Minister Robert Habeck said any broadening of [export?] controls to [dual-use?] materials like lithium would be "problematic". The Dutch government said the effect of the new rules would depend on how they are carried out.
archived Biden and von der Leyen opened negotiations
In 2022, top importers of China's gallium products were Japan, Germany and the Netherlands, [Chinese] news website Caixin said, citing customs data. Top importers of germanium products were Japan, France, Germany, and the United States, it said. ...A source at Infineon said most supplies come from outside of China. The German chipmaker produces gallium nitride semiconductors in Villach, Austria and will soon make them at its factory in Kulim, Malaysia. Germany's BDI industry group said China's move strengthens the argument for greater raw materials independence....
archived Why China Doesn't Want Your Trash Anymore
by Cat on Thu Jul 6th, 2023 at 02:01:38 AM EST
Yellen Faces a Diplomatic Test in Her High-Stakes Visit to China | NY Times |

The Treasury secretary will need to defend export controls and tariffs while explaining that the United States does not aim to harm China's economy.

During her first full day of meetings on Friday, Ms. Yellen will meet with Liu He, China's former vice premier, and Zhou Xiaochuan, the former governor of the People's Bank of China. Later Friday, Ms. Yellen will meet with Premier Li Qiang at the Great Hall of the People. The Treasury secretary will also participate in a round-table discussion with officials from the American Chamber of Commerce in China to hear about the challenges that U.S. companies are facing in China.

For Ms. Yellen, the challenge will be to convince her Chinese counterparts that the bevy of U.S. measures blocking access to sensitive technology such as semiconductors in the name of national security are not intended to inflict harm on the Chinese economy. That will not be easy, as both countries continue to erect new barriers to trade and investment.

The Biden administration is preparing several new restrictions on U.S. technology trade with China, including potential limits on advanced chips and U.S. investment in the country. Forthcoming rules also appear likely to clamp down on Chinese companies' access to U.S. cloud computing services, according to people familiar with the matter, in an effort to close a loophole in earlier restrictions on China's access to advanced chips used for artificial intelligence.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Jul 8th, 2023 at 06:48:52 PM EST

Many chengyu use "rain" metaphorically--in ancient times, the terms "wind" and "rain" were often used together as euphemisms for political or other sticky situations. What better way to celebrate this season of storms and watchful words than with some rain-related idioms?

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Jul 8th, 2023 at 06:49:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Somewhat mirrored ...

ASEAN Summit: US says region must be free to choose partners | DW News |

Blinken met counterparts from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) who have gathered in Indonesia along with top diplomats from China, Russia, Japan, India and Australia.  

Blinken: Issues should not be addressed through  'coercion' 

Blinken said that countries should be free to determine their own paths and problems should be "dealt with openly -- not through coercion," in a veiled reference to Beijing and just a day after holding talks with China's Wang Yi. 

China, ASEAN 'should be vigilant to external threats' while eyeing greater cooperation | Global Times |

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Fri Jul 14th, 2023 at 09:01:07 PM EST
I gather, he hasn't collected fresh donations for the Advantage Ukraine Recovery Fund.
by Cat on Sat Jul 15th, 2023 at 06:32:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
NATO | Vilnius Summit Communiqué, 11 July "vicinity of the Euro-Atlantic area"
4.           We reaffirm our commitment to NATO's Open Door policy and to Article 10 of the Washington Treaty. Every nation has the right to choose its own security arrangements. We look forward to welcoming Sweden as a full member of the Alliance and, in this regard, welcome the agreement reached between the NATO Secretary General, the President of Türkiye, and the Prime Minister of Sweden.
6.           Strategic competition, pervasive instability, and recurrent shocks define our broader security environment. Conflict, fragility and instability in Africa and the Middle East directly [sic] affect our security and the security of our partners. The People's Republic of China's (PRC) stated ambitions and coercive policies challenge our interests, security and values. We remain open to constructive engagement with the PRC, including to build reciprocal transparency, with a view to safeguarding the Alliance's security interests.  We continue to be confronted by cyber, space, hybrid and other asymmetric threats, and by the malicious use of emerging and disruptive technologies.
55.         The PRC is rapidly expanding and diversifying its nuclear arsenal with more warheads and a larger number of sophisticated delivery systems to establish a nuclear triad, while failing to engage in meaningful transparency or good faith efforts to achieve nuclear arms control or risk reduction.  We oppose any attempt to produce or support the production of plutonium for military programmes under the guise of civilian programmes, which undermines the objectives of the NPT.  We urge the PRC to engage in strategic risk reduction discussions and to promote stability through greater transparency with regard to its nuclear weapon policies, plans, and capabilities.
82.         The Middle East and Africa are regions of strategic interest.  We will deepen our political engagements and public diplomacy outreach to our long-standing partners in the Mediterranean Dialogue and Istanbul Cooperation Initiative.  We will also increase our outreach to relevant regional organisations, including the African Union and the Gulf Cooperation Council.  We are implementing the Defence Capacity Building packages for Iraq, Jordan, Mauritania, and Tunisia.  We will also explore with the Jordanian authorities the possibility of establishing a NATO Liaison Office in Amman.
85.         The Indo-Pacific is important for NATO, given that developments in that region can directly [sic] affect Euro-Atlantic security.  We welcome the contribution of our partners in the Asia-Pacific region—Australia, Japan, New Zealand, and the Republic of Korea—to security in the Euro-Atlantic, including their commitment to supporting Ukraine.  We will further strengthen our dialogue and cooperation to tackle our shared security challenges, including on cyber defence, technology and hybrid, underpinned by our shared commitment to upholding international law and the rules-based international order.
"Washington Treaty," Art.10
The Parties may, by unanimous agreement, invite any other European State in a position to further the principles of this Treaty and to contribute to the security of the North Atlantic area to accede to this Treaty. Any State so invited may become a Party to the Treaty by depositing its instrument of accession with the Government of the United States of America. The Government of the United States of America will inform each of the Parties of the deposit of each such instrument of accession.
NATO Partners: Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council (EAPC), NATO's Mediterranean Dialogue, Istanbul Cooperation Initiative (ICI), Partners across the globe, International organisations (UN, EU, OSCE)
NATO's Open Door origin story by NATO Secretary General, Lord Robertson, Y2 GWOT
...NATO enlargement means the definitive end of Europe's Cold War division. NATO membership locks in the progress that these countries have made in political, economic and military terms. And it will spread the burden of security on more shoulders. That is why the enlargement process will take another decisive step forward at Prague.

Of course, enlargement is more than a selection process. Managing enlargement also means keeping the door open for future members. And it means continued engagement with all our [p]artners, whether they aspire to NATO membership or not. This is why a third element of NATO's agenda, at Prague, will be to enhance and adapt the Alliance's political and military [p]artnerships with countries across Europe and into Central Asia...

by Cat on Sat Jul 15th, 2023 at 08:10:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Earlier post ... Media warfare and NATO aggression

NATO Head Robertson: Putin wanted to join alliance early on in his rule

George Robertson, a former Labour defence secretary who led NATO between 1999 and 2003, said Putin made it clear at their first meeting that he wanted Russia to be part of western Europe. "They wanted to be part of that secure, stable prosperous west that Russia was out of at the time," he said.

The Labour peer recalled an early meeting with Putin, who became Russian president in 2000. "Putin said: `When are you going to invite us to join NATO?'

My opinion over many, many years ...

Russia Is Connected to Western Europe 

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Jul 15th, 2023 at 09:17:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
🇺🇸 🔥

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sun Jul 16th, 2023 at 10:44:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
yahoo! BBC | Colonisation by British 'luckiest thing' to happen to Australia - John Howard, 27 July
... His remarks were made in relation to a historic referendum due to take place this year on Indigenous recognition. If successful, the vote will change Australia's constitution to give First Nations peoples a greater say over the laws and policies that affect them.
Speaking to [T]he Australian [n]ewspaper about the upcoming vote, Mr Howard described colonisation as "inevitable". "I do hold the view that the luckiest thing that happened to this country was being colonised by the British," he said. "Not that they were perfect by any means, but they were infinitely more successful and beneficent colonisers than other European countries."...
'Door is open' for New Zealand to join AUKUS, Blinken says, 27 July
"On AUKUS as we continue to develop it ... the door is very much open for New Zealand and other partners to engage as they see appropriate going forward," Blinken told reporters in New Zealand. "We've long worked together on the most important national security issues, and so as we further develop AUKUS, as I said, the door is open to engagement."
On the Retirement of Deputy Secretary Sherman (24.07.23)
"Upon Wendy's retirement, President Biden has asked Victoria Nuland to serve as Acting Deputy Secretary until our next Deputy Secretary is confirmed. We are fortunate to have someone with her experience, skill, and commitment to the Department take on this added responsibility."
Blinken's stop in New Zealand this week came amid the dedication of a new American embassy in Tonga and a ministerial dialogue alongside Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin in Australia. He also cheered on the U.S. Women's National Team in the World Cup on Wednesday.
starsandstripes AP | Stalker 2 on the move, 26-29 July
And, it comes as Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and climate envoy John Kerry have recently wrapped up their own trips to China. Second gentleman Douglas Emhoff is currently in New Zealand for the World Cup and will be making a side trip to Samoa in the coming days.
Blinken's travel was announced a week after the State Department notified Congress that it plans a MASSIVE INCREASE in diplomatic personnel and spending for facilities at new U.S. embassies in the Pacific islands. The boost in the U.S. presence in the Pacific is in response to China's increasing assertiveness there.
archive "China's assertive behaviour poses a challenge to our interests, our values, our security...." in Ruble and Yuan
The department told lawmakers that it envisions hiring up to 40 staffers over the next five years for each of four recently opened or soon-to-be-opened embassies in the Pacific.

Those include the embassy in Nuku'alofa [Tonga], an embassy in Honiara, Solomon Islands, that opened in January; and planned embassies in Port Vila, Vanuatu [!], and in Tarawa, Kiribati. Currently there are only two temporary American staffers each in Honiara and Nuku'alofa.

archive NEW! Green Zone embassy garrison
At each of those posts, the department said it will spend at least $10 million for start-up, design and construction costs.
by Cat on Thu Jul 27th, 2023 at 03:11:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
40 staffers, military attachés, CIA intelligence ... missing DIPLOMATS ... American warriors preparing the assault on China ... strictly defensive to fight them over there and not on our shores. Containment by encirclement ... time for Cuba, Dominican Republic and Mexico to join BRICS and SCO.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Thu Jul 27th, 2023 at 03:40:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
MX purportedly maintains diplomatic relations with CN and RU. The N.A. tankie crowd regulary expresses anxiety over arch "rivals" RU and CN infiltrating the USMCA (formerly NAFTA) market is imminent, because MX is the gate to CA and US "national security" in central and south America. However, the scope of MX inter-governmental agreements beyond USMCA are trans-Pacific, LatAm, and CELAC regional associations. OPEC+ dialogue is the exception.

Dominica (.DM) has not sent representatives to BRICS summits in any public capacity. Xinua reported Cuba's representative(s) at the 13th Meeting of BRICS National Security Advisers, aggravating US congressional "spy island" paranoia.

CU, DM, and MX are not involved or represensented in any formal capacity. The 2023 New Delhi Declaration of the SCO pointedly stated, "Member States consider Central Asia to be the core of SCO." However, CU bi-lateral co-operation with RU and CN over the prior 70 years has matured because of, perhaps, the "liberal" Díaz-Canel government.

Russia, Cuba switching to settlements in rubles (2021) and China-Cuba: Bilateral Trade and Investment Prospects (2020-2022 BRI, BREP) are significant prerequisites for domestic capital formation, purchasing power, and industrial capacity (not the subsistance economy prepared by tourist EUR revenue and exile USD remittances).

Again, the N.A. tankie crowd regulary expresses anxiety over arch "rivals" RU and CN infiltrating USMCA "security". Neither DM nor MX have accepted or announced BRI development agreements. Ironically, soliciting interest from DM in BRI opportunities launched Honduras (.HN) diplomatic investment into BRI markets 4 years later. By contrast, DM is captured 200-year-old "banana republic" leaking an influential "diaspora". Along with EECB members represent not only US peripheral dominion, but bilateral investment treaties with the UK and Germany in CELAC and CARICOM inchoate "independence" summits.

In conclusion, the only path toward BRICS or BRI integration of US "safe harbor" LAC states will be plowed by the Merosur vanguard—Argentina, Brazil—around the incontinence of Paraguay, Uruguay, Peru, and, yes, Mexico.

by Cat on Fri Jul 28th, 2023 at 02:41:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
time | Bolivia Is Now Using China's Yuan for Trade, Challenging Global Dominance of U.S. Dollar, 28 July
Earlier this year, Argentina's government unveiled a plan to use the yuan to pay for imports from China as a way to preserve its dwindling foreign reserves and it has raised the possibility of paying off debts with the International Monetary Fund using the Chinese currency.
archive Importance of BRICS Leading Multipolar World in Conversion of Europe to New Fascism and War
In Brazil, the yuan surpassed the euro as the second most important currency in its foreign reserves at the end of 2022, when 5.37% of the central bank's holdings were in the Chinese currency, compared to 4.74% for the euro.
archive Lula's outbursts won't deter EU
In Bolivia, the yuan started to be used after months of severe dollar shortages that have been impacting the country's economy since February. Some analysts and members of the opposition have questioned the move to use the yuan.
archive Jeanine Añez hiding in a box, Biden, Johnson, vdL, Morrison, Suga-Kishida, and Bolsonaro blocked it
"It is not a long-term solution, and it seems more like an attempt to cover up economic problems," said José Gabriel Espinoza, an economics professor at Bolivia's Catholic University. Between May and July of this year, Bolivia conducted financial operations amounting to 278 million Chinese yuan ($38.7 million), which accounts for 10% of its foreign trade during that period, Economy Minister Marcelo Montenegro said on Thursday.
archive Bolivians plan their escape
"We're already using the yuan. It's a reality and a good start," Montenegro said during a news conference. "Banana, zinc, and wood manufacturing exporters are conducting transactions in yuan, as well as importers of vehicles and capital goods." These electronic transactions are carried out through the state-owned Banco Unión. "The amount being used in yuan is still relatively small, but it will increase over time," Montenegro said.
consortiumnews | Lithium Power Politics, 3 Aug 2022
The people of Potosí, Bolivia, like those of Tierra Amarilla, Chile, want to imagine a different kind of extraction
"Extraction and extractivism are not the same," said Morales Balcázar. The former is the mere removal of natural resources, which can be done sustainably without harming the earth, and is carried out for the social well-being of the people who live near the mines.

"We have been holding conversations with Indigenous institutions and trade unions to imagine different regimes of extraction," Morales Balcázar told us.
When Evo Morales took over as president of Bolivia in 2006, the residue of this battle shaped his "resource nationalism" approach to lithium and other minerals.

"He vowed to 'industrialize with dignity and sovereignty,' promising that raw lithium would not be exploited by foreign corporations but instead processed by state-controlled entities in Bolivia and transformed into batteries," noted a 2018 article in Bloomberg. [...] Morales' government invested heavily in the lithium industrialization scheme, which led to Bolivia being able to develop its own batteries (including cathode production) and develop its own electric car through the state-owned Quantum Motors.

To control and manage lithium production, a company called Yacimientos de Litio Bolivianos (YLB) was created in 2017 by the government.

thediplomat | In Bolivia, China Signs Deal For World's Largest Lithium Reserves
"Members of the Bolivian opposition have questioned whether the deal, which was signed last month between the state firm YLB and three Chinese companies, will benefit the country." (10.02.23)
"We were making great progress," Evo Morales told us, "until the coup of 2019 and then the pandemic." The coup eventually led to his ouster.
Chilean President Plans to Nationalize Lithium Industry, 28 Apr 2023
by Cat on Sat Jul 29th, 2023 at 07:37:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
state.gov | Blinken and New Zealand Nanaia Mahuta at a Joint Press Availability, 26 July
QUESTION: ... Then Madam Foreign Minister, I'm wondering from your perspective what parts of Pillar Two of AUKUS New Zealand might be interested in joining and taking part in.  And also, of course, you mentioned Tonga.  We have just come there - from there and was wondering - clearly, the United States and China are focused on sort of military and security aspects of relations in the Pacific right now.  Are you concerned about the militarization of the Pacific?  And would you like the United States to do anything differently in the Pacific right now?  Thank you.
NZ FOREIGN MINISTER MAHUTA: Yeah, perhaps I'll go first this time.
STALKER 2:  Please.
MAHUTA: Thank you for the question. And I've been quite clear in terms of New Zealand's position on the AUKUS arrangements right from the beginning is that New Zealand is not prepared to compromise or change our nuclear framework position. That's in the first instance. And it's acknowledged and regarded by AUKUS members and they have certainly heard what we've said in relation to our concerns around compliance of those arrangements with the Treaty of Rarotonga, and it is a widely held view across the region.
"The current States Parties to the Treaty are: Australia, Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, New Zealand, Niue, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu."

< squint > Which state "creating new embassies across the region" is not a signatory?

When I consider the aspects of Pillar Two that was relayed to the Secretary and the officials (inaudible), we're exploring what the full extent of Pillar Two opportunities could look like, and then once that's well understood and articulated by officials and agreed to, that will come back to cabinet.  So nothing's been agreed to, and I want to be really clear about that.
In relation to the China-U.S. question that you pose with regards to the Pacific region, it would be fair to say that Pacific partners themselves have articulated that the greatest security threat in our region is climate change. And therefore they are welcome - they, like us, are welcoming a different conversation about how partners help to meet and rise to the challenge of climate impacts within the region and what that can do to build different types of opportunities to strengthen the resilience of the region, the security of the region, and the relationships that are committed to seeing this region be no worse off.  And that's going to be an important element as we seek to foster and grow the range of partnerships with < wipes tears > the likes of the U.S., who are now creating new embassies across the region, have resumed the Peace Corps within the region, and also having a presence in relation to a significant economic component which is important to the Pacific, which is around multi-management of the tuna fisheries as well as a presence in Fiji with USAID.

So that all, I think, bodes well for an increased presence with great commitment but also hearing the aspirations of the Pacific and working in partnership with them. It's something that New Zealand takes very seriously with our Pacific partners, and it does help our long-term vested interest in ensuring greater peace, prosperity, and stability for our region.
STALKER 2:  Michael, with regard to the grain initiative and Africa ....

by Cat on Sat Jul 29th, 2023 at 12:04:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Macron Seeks Bigger French Say in Pacific as China's Clout Five Eyes and AUKIS new colonialism Grows

  • President slams 'new imperialisms' on South Pacific trip

Must listen to the Bull$hit spoken by Lloyd Aystin ... US interests a few decades long ... Japanese Imperialism and expansion, Chinese Empire and cultures millennia long ... America participate for common good in trade, but stay out of sovereign states with military bloodhounds.

See my latest posts on Cambodia @MofA.

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sat Jul 29th, 2023 at 07:24:26 AM EST
[ Parent ]
increasingly offensive foreign policy, 27 July
..."In the Indo-Pacific, and particularly in Oceania, a new imperialism is appearing, and a power logic that is threatening the sovereignty of several states, the smallest, often the most fragile," Macron said in a speech in Vanuatu. The French president is on a five-day visit to the South Pacific, stopping off in the French territory of New Caledonia, Papua New Guinea, and the archipelago of Vanuatu.
Macron said he felt it was legitimate to make such warnings given France's colonial ties to the region. "We are the heirs of this past," he said. Vanuatu was a French-British "condominium" known as the New Hebrides until it achieved independence in 1980. The French president also gave his speech in French and English, two of the nation's official languages....
archive Happy Vanuatu Day!
by Cat on Thu Jul 27th, 2023 at 07:13:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sun Jul 16th, 2023 at 10:19:19 PM EST
I can find hardly any points I can agree with b @MofA on the old foxes setting China policy: the school of Zbigniew Brzezinski for Democrats from Carter thru Clinton-Obama-Biden in step with Madeleine Albright.

Next b. covers the China visit of Henry Kissinger, the US traitor from the Paris talks in 1968, to advisor to Republican president "I'm Not A Crook" Nixon and both Bushes. I see the China visit more as a courtesy call commemorating ping-pong diplomacy. Taiwan issue won't come any closer to be resolved.

The U.S. Wars Against Russia And China Have No Economic Logic Attached To Them

The U.S. politician Zbigniew Brzezinski was a hardliner with a (neo-)liberal core. He had a wide influence on U.S. policies:

Brzezinski had argued that without Ukraine, Russia would be unable to rule the Asian heartland and could not challenge U.S. power.

But I just learned via a Pepe Esobar essay about Henry Kissinger's visit and a potential great power war with China, that Brezezinski had in later years changed his mind:

    "The Grand Chessboard", published in 1997, before the 9/11 era, argued that the US should rule over any peer competitor rising in Eurasia. Brzezinski did not live to see the living incarnation of his ultimate nightmare: a Russia-China strategic partnership. But already seven years ago - two years after Maidan in Kiev - at least he understood it was imperative to "realign the global power architecture".


Economic logic provides that the U.S. (and European) economy would be better off by avoiding a conflict with Russia and China. But, as Micheal Hudson explains, this now gets overwritten by national security preferences which have remarkable conseqences:

    Instead of isolating Russia and China and making them dependent on U.S. economic control, U.S. unipolar diplomacy has isolated itself and its NATO satellites from the rest of the world - the Global Majority that is growing while NATO economies are rushing ahead along their Road to Deindustrialization.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sun Jul 23rd, 2023 at 04:41:24 PM EST
The Looming War Against China: Economic Logic Has Been Replaced by National Security Overrides | MofA |

The July NATO summit in Vilnius had the feeling of a funeral, as if they had just lost a family member - Ukraine. To clear away NATO's failure to drive Russia out of Ukraine and move NATO right up to the Russian border, its members tried to revive their spirits by mobilizing support for the next great fight - against China, which is now designated as their ultimate strategic enemy. To prepare for this showdown, NATO announced a commitment to extend their military presence all the way to the Pacific.

The plan is to carve away China's military allies and trading partners, above all Russia, starting with the fight in Ukraine. President Biden has said that this war will be global in scope and will take many decades as it expands to ultimately isolate and break up China.

The U.S.-imposed sanctions against trade with Russia are a dress rehearsal for imposing similar sanctions against China. But only the NATO allies have joined the fight. And instead of wrecking Russia's economy and "turning the ruble to rubble" as President Biden predicted, NATO's sanctions have made it more self-reliant, increasing its balance of payments and international monetary reserves, and hence the ruble's exchange rate.

To cap matters, despite the failure of trade and financial sanctions to injure Russia - and indeed, despite NATO's failures in Afghanistan and Libya, NATO countries committed themselves to trying the same tactics against China. The world economy is to be split between US/NATO/Five Eyes on the one hand, and the rest of the world - the Global Majority - on the other. EU Commissioner Joseph Borrell calls this as a split between the US/European Garden (the Golden Billion) and the Jungle threatening to engulf it, like an invasion of its well-manicured lawns by an invasive species.

From an economic vantage point, NATO's behavior since its military buildup to attack Ukraine's Russian-speaking eastern states in February 2022 has been a drastic failure.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sun Jul 23rd, 2023 at 04:42:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Showdown with China started long before the Vilnius Summit ...

Joe build on Trump's trade anger with Beijing and designed a Super MAGA concept. Biden quickly reacted to the challenge to America's global power when Germany's chancellor Angela Merkel pushed through the new China Trade proposal in December 2020 ... during Joe's Blitzkrieg across Europe in 2021, the EU states chickened out. This gave America the opportunity to use the Ukraine war as a cover to destroy the economic might of the European Union. NATO as the wrecking ball with the Bucharest Nine as the battering ram within the organisation.

Disbelief and betrayal: Europe reacts to Biden's Afghanistan 'miscalculation'

I disagree with Michael Hudson ...

Madrid Summit: NATO Goes Global

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sun Jul 23rd, 2023 at 04:46:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
EU and China reach agreement in principle on investment

The Agreement will create a better balance in the EU-China trade relationship. The EU has traditionally been much more open than China to foreign investment. This is true as regards foreign investment in general. China now commits to open up to the EU in a number of key sectors. President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, said:

    "Today`s agreement is an important landmark in our relationship with China and for our values-based trade agenda. It will provide unprecedented access to the Chinese market for European investors, enabling our businesses to grow and create jobs. It will also commit China to ambitious principles on sustainability, transparency and non-discrimination. The agreement will rebalance our economic relationship with China".

Executive Vice-President and Commissioner for Trade, Valdis Dombrovskis, said:

    "This deal will give European businesses a major boost in one of the world's biggest and fastest growing markets, helping them to operate and compete in China. It also anchors our values-based trade agenda with one of our largest trading partners. We have secured binding commitments on the environment, climate change and combatting forced labour. We will engage closely with China to ensure that all commitments are honoured fully."

The rules negotiated in this Agreement set a high benchmark in terms of transparency, level playing field, market access commitments and sustainable development.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sun Jul 23rd, 2023 at 04:47:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
NATO's Role in a New European Security Order | 1995 |

Lord Ismay, the first Secretary General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), reportedly observed that the purpose of the Alliance was to keep the Americans in Europe, the Russians out, and the Germans down. Such a reference to Germany is invidious and a distortion of the reality of the contribution made by German democracy to the Western community since the end of the war. Nevertheless, Lord Ismay was not wrong to associate the three central elements of NATO's geopolitical purpose: to ensure the American military presence in Europe as a counterweight to Russian power and as the guarantor of the framework for Germany's reintegration into the European system.

The Russian threat has obviously receded, but the structural problem of European security has turned out to be a major intellectual and political challenge nonetheless. Not in 50 years, in fact, has there been so much fluidity and uncertainty about security arrangements in Europe as there is now, five years after the end of the Cold War. In such an environment, the stabilizing functions of the Alliance turn out to be still valuable: indeed, there is no adequate substitute to NATO currently available, especially with respect to both post-Communist Russia and newly unified Germany.

The Russian Enigma

Churchill's description of Russia as "a riddle wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma" is well-known. Many years earlier, Bismarck once offered up a more pointed version of the same idea: Russia, he is said to have observed, is never as strong or as weak as it appears. This ambiguity remains the better part of wisdom today. With Russia a permanent factor in European politics, it would be imprudent to imagine that difficulties associated with its integration into the European system have disappeared.

Now that the Red Army is out of Central and Eastern Europe and the Baltic States, and now that U.S. forces in Europe have been reduced by two-thirds, the current East-West balance of military power on the Continent appears to be -- and is -- quite benign. After the preceding four decades of dangerous confrontation, the new balance stands as an extraordinary improvement: few would pretend otherwise. Nevertheless, the principle of equilibrium must still be observed. Russia's domestic evolution remains uncertain, to say the least. It remains a huge concentration of power on the Eurasian landmass: even in its reduced state it disposes of some 2 million men under arms and around 25,000 nuclear warheads. These military capabilities dwarf those of any other nation in Europe.

Mystery Man Vladimir Putin - Year 2000

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sun Jul 23rd, 2023 at 04:43:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
China's top legislature adopts a decision of removing Qin Gang as foreign minister, (re-)appoints Wang Yi as foreign minister | Global Times |

China's top legislature convened a session to review a draft criminal law amendment and a decision on official appointment and removal. Qin Gang has been removed of his position as Foreign Minister. Wang Yiwas appointed as the Chinese Foreign Minister. Tuesday's decision has not touched on Qin's title of State Councilor.

Wang, 70-year-old veteran diplomat, began his career in the foreign ministry in 1982, and became the counselor at the Chinese Embassy in Japan in 1989 and then the minister counselor in April 1993. He then was appointed as the deputy director general of the department of Asian Affairs at the ministry in 1994 and then the director general of the department of Asian Affairs from 1995 to 1998. 

Wang served as the Vice Minister and CPC Committee member of the ministry from 2001 to 2004 before he was appointed as the Chinese ambassador to Japan. 

Wang also served as the director of the Taiwan Work Office of the CPC Central Committee and Minister of Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council from 2008 to 2013. Between 2013 and 2018, Wang served as the minister and deputy secretary of CPC Committee of foreign ministry, and since 2018, he served as the State Councilor, member of the Leading CPC Members Group of the State Council, and Minister of Foreign Affairs before Qin took up the position in 2022. 

Archive: Qin Gang

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Tue Jul 25th, 2023 at 02:30:40 PM EST
Is not ping pong diplomacy ... the burial of Nixon and Kissinger.

Yellen criticises Chinese curbs against US firms | BBC News|

The US plans to require American companies to disclose investments they make in China in high-tech sectors such as artificial intelligence, and to prohibit certain investments outright.

The much anticipated move gives the government new power to screen foreign dealings by private companies.

The US said the measure would be narrowly targeted, but it is poised to further chill economic relations between the two superpowers.

China said it was "very disappointed".

The US "has continuously escalated suppression and restrictions on China," said Liu Pengyu, a spokesperson for the Chinese embassy in Washington.

But he started ... no you did 😡

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Thu Aug 10th, 2023 at 07:56:06 AM EST

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