Posted BY: RM | NwoReport

Last week, I wrote about the major expansion of the U.S.-Philippine alliance, Japanese alignment with Taiwan and possible three-way links with South Korea, and a planned visit by President Joe Biden to Papua New Guinea to forge an alliance there. That meeting didn’t take place, officially because Biden needed to return to Washington to secure a deal on raising the debt ceiling. My guess is that during a week where China’s strategic defense in the South China Sea was hammered and likely fragmented, the U.S. decided not to pile on with a visit, but the agreement with Papua New Guinea will be completed nonetheless.

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This week, the focus changed from military deployments to economics. In general, this is far more important to the Chinese than the military balance. China’s military does not reach the level where Beijing could have a high degree of confidence in its success in a conflict, and defeat would be catastrophic. But in point of fact, I regard the Chinese military as weaker than others do. Weapons are important, but so are experience in combat and terrain. The terrain was never favorable for China. Islands block its access to the open seas, and last week’s agreements made the Chinese position as an offensive power untenable. There is an interesting tendency to overestimate potential offensive powers over those with a strong defensive base. Russia in Ukraine is a case in point, but so is China, where an attack on Taiwan has been imminent for years. Russia did not recognize its position, but China does.

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