News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Ahyoung Shin

 

1. 1 big thing: China’s consulates do a lot more than spy

2. Beijing hard-liners kick against Xi Jinping’s wolf warrior diplomacy

3. Has the wind changed? PLA hawks General DAI Xu and General QIAO Liang release odd articles

4. Australia asserts to US: ‘We don’t agree on everything’

5. Mystery seeds from China are landing in Americans’ mail boxes

6. We need a better China policy in the Middle East

7. How to hide from a drone – the subtle art of ‘ghosting’ in the age of surveillance

8. Inkstone explains: Who are the 92 million Chinese Communist Party members?

9. Oh God, not the Peloponnesian War again

10. Graduate school as a mission, not a reward

11. To keep up with our competitors, America must boost shipbuilding

12. Sacrifice and security: A pandemic’s lessons on building ‘consent’ as an element of strategy

13. Three urgent questions for the Air Force’s new Chief of Staff

14. Will Japan pursue a strike capability in lieu of Aegis ashore?

 

1. 1 big thing: China’s consulates do a lot more than spy

Axios

Some important insights into what China does, especially with student groups, political involvement, and Chinese citizens and Uighurs.

2. Beijing hard-liners kick against Xi Jinping’s wolf warrior diplomacy

lowyinstitute.org · by Richard McGregor

Again I have mentioned this but Richard MacGregor’s book, The Party, is still very useful despite being a decade old.

3. Has the wind changed? PLA hawks General DAI Xu and General QIAO Liang release odd articles

gnews.org · July 12, 2020

Everyone should read or re-read Unrestricted Warfare. But the last line of the introduction (MIles’ comments) is fascinating: “Nobody can dispute the fact that the CCP is collapsing and perishing.” I am sure there is somebody who will dispute this.  Is that Miles’ assessment of does he think General Qiao is making us think this? If so then it must be part of a political warfare strategy and it is the message he wants us to have. And of course the four unexpected things and “ten understandings” are interesting. (the ten understandings make me think someone wants to be like Mao).

4. Australia asserts to US: ‘We don’t agree on everything’

9news.com.au

Nor should allies agree on everything. National interests always come first.

5. Mystery seeds from China are landing in Americans’ mail boxes

CBS News

More on the mystery seeds, just a scam? But whatever you do not plant them.

6. We need a better China policy in the Middle East

defenseone.com · by Bilal Y. Saab and Joseph Votel 

This article begs the question in my mind, do our geographic combatant commands offer the best way to organize to deal with competition and threats? China is not restricted to the INDOPACOM AOR. We need Chinese expertise in CENTCOM and AFRICOM and SOUTHCOM, etc. Should we be geographically organized and focused or should be threat and global competition focused? As the authors note – it is all interconnected.

7. How to hide from a drone – the subtle art of ‘ghosting’ in the age of surveillance

theconversation.com · by Austin Choi-Fitzpatrick

A “public service announcement?”

8. Inkstone explains: Who are the 92 million Chinese Communist Party members?

inkstonenews.com · by Viola Zhou

You can also listen to this at the link below.

9. Oh God, not the Peloponnesian War again

Foreign Policy · by James Palmer · July 28, 2020

Whoa.  A slam on Thucydides? Fear, honor, and interest is timeless and cuts across all cultures.

But the author makes a good point even though as he notes eastern history is harder to access than western history. I do recommend reading about the Korean ironclads (turtle ships) and Admiral Yi Sun-shin.

10. Graduate school as a mission, not a reward

usni.org · by Lieutenant Thomas Krasnican, U.S. Navy · July 28, 2020

That is correct. But the anti-intellectual clique in the military views it not only as a reward but also as a negative “due to time away from muddy boots and troops.”

11. To keep up with our competitors, America must boost shipbuilding

Defense News · by Sen. David Perdue · July 28, 2020

12. Sacrifice and security: A pandemic’s lessons on building ‘consent’ as an element of strategy

warontherocks.com · by Gregory A. Daddis · July 29, 2020

Is the war metaphor ill-chosen?

13. Three urgent questions for the Air Force’s new Chief of Staff

defenseone.com · by Mara E. Karlin and Jim Mitre

14. Will Japan pursue a strike capability in lieu of Aegis ashore?

thediplomat.com · July 28, 2020

It will be a political as well as strategic, military challenge. 

 

———–

“In one way we think a great deal too much of the atomic bomb. “How are we to live in an atomic age?” I am tempted to reply: “Why, as you would have lived in the sixteenth century when the plague visited London almost every year, or as you would have lived in a Viking age when raiders from Scandinavia might land and cut your throat any night; or indeed, as you are already living in an age of cancer, an age of syphilis, an age of paralysis, an age of air raids, an age of railway accidents, an age of motor accidents.”

 

In other words, do not let us begin by exaggerating the novelty of our situation. Believe me, dear sir or madam, you and all whom you love were already sentenced to death before the atomic bomb was invented: and quite a high percentage of us were going to die in unpleasant ways. We had, indeed, one very great advantage over our ancestors-anesthetics; but we have that still. It is perfectly ridiculous to go about whimpering and drawing long faces because the scientists have added one more chance of painful and premature death to a world which already bristled with such chances and in which death itself was not a chance at all, but a certainty.

 

This is the first point to be made: and the first action to be taken is to pull ourselves together. If we are all going to be destroyed by an atomic bomb, let that bomb when it comes find us doing sensible and human things-praying, working, teaching, reading, listening to music, bathing the children, playing tennis, chatting to our friends over a pint and a game of darts-not huddled together like frightened sheep and thinking about bombs. They may break our bodies (a microbe can do that) but they need not dominate our minds.

– C.S. Lewis “On Living in an Atomic Age” (1948)

 

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