China

The Wolves of Zhurihe: China’s OPFOR Comes of Age

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Publication: China Brief Volume: 15 Issue: 4

February 20, 2015 02:10 PM Age: 1 day By: Gary Li

The PLA’s “Stride” exercise in 2014, with “Blue Force” helicopters and “Red Force” ground forces. (Credit: China Military Online)

Between May 31 and July 28, 2014, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) began the annual large-scale exercise codenamed “Stride 2014.” The Stride exercises have been a regular occurrence, focusing largely on the rapid deployment of large field formations into unfamiliar territory and conducting confrontation drills. The 2014 version, however, was different in its scale, unit composition, intensity and the nature of the opponent the units faced. No fewer than seven of the PLA’s top brigades from seven different group armies (GA) were deployed to the Zhurihe Training Base in Inner Mongolia, under the Beijing Military Region. During the six confrontation exercises that followed, only one resulted in a victory for the visiting “Red Forces” (REDFOR), and at heavy cost. The drubbing received by the REDFOR actually reflects a new age in PLA training that is closely linked with the unit that taught them the lesson, China’s first dedicated opposing forces brigade (OPFOR). [1] Read the rest of this entry »

The Energy Context behind China’s Drilling Rig in the South China Sea

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Publication: China Brief Volume: 14 Issue: 11
June 4, 2014 04:51 PM Age: 16 days By: James Manicom

On May 3 China placed the Haiyang Shiyou 981 deep water semi-submersible drilling rig 119nm off the coast of Vietnam and 180nm from Hainan Island. The rig lies 17nm from Triton Island, part of the Paracel islands that China occupied by force from then South Vietnam in 1974. Vietnamese and international condemnation was swift and strident. Vietnamese Foreign Minister Pham Bing Minh called the move a violation of Vietnamese sovereignty and the U.S. State Department described the move as “provocative”. Chinese Foreign Ministry (FMPRC) Spokesperson Hua Chunying said the rig was normal part of regular offshore resource exploration activities China is entitled to conduct in its territorial waters off of the Paracel islands (FMPRC press conference, May 6 and 12). The move is in fact a deliberate Chinese escalation of its territorial and maritime dispute with Vietnam. This marks the first time that any claimant has unilaterally explored for hydrocarbon resources in a disputed part of the South China Sea, although Chinese officials maintain the activity in question is a decade old, and claimants have previously granted concessions to international energy companies to explore disputed areas (FMPRC press conference, May 14). Read the rest of this entry »

Review: A Few Questions About China’s Air Defense Identification Zone and Its Aftermath

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March 21, 2014 | Dr. David Lai

China declared an air defense identification zone (ADIZ) in the East China Sea on November 23, 2013 (See Figure 1). This move set off a security and political tsunami in the Western Pacific. The United States immediately denounced China’s sudden and unilateral act. Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, the Philippines, Australia, the European Union, and many other nations also joined the United States in criticizing China.

       Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe took the strongest stand by challenging China to roll back the ADIZ. In his angry address to a parliamentary session in Tokyo, Abe stated that the “measures taken by the Chinese side have no validity whatsoever to Japan, and we demand China revoke any measures that could infringe upon the freedom of flight in international airspace.”1
      Following this wave of condemnations, the United States also sent two B-52 bombers (based on Guam) into the Chinese-claimed ADIZ in a stated effort to challenge China’s position. Japan and South Korea also scrambled their fighter jets into the troubled airspace. This flare-up took place only a few days prior to U.S. Vice President Joe Biden’s long-planned visit to Northeast Asia that included stops in Tokyo, Beijing, and Seoul. The Vice President’s visit was originally intended to promote U.S. economic and security interests in this region. The sudden turn of events in Northeast Asia had turned the Vice President’s trip into crisis management diplomacy. Read the rest of this entry »

Review: Is Trilateral China-India-Russia Cooperation in Afghanistan Possible?

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South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation

South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Indian, Chinese and Russian officials will meet on Friday to discuss Afghanistan. Is there substance to this trilateral?

By Ankit Panda January 16, 2014

 

On Friday, senior officials from India, China, and Russia will meet in Beijing for a trilateral discussion on the emerging security situation in Afghanistan ahead of the United States’ drawdown and the upcoming general election scheduled for April. Cooperation between the three powers on Afghanistan has been burgeoning since 2013 and could become a major factor for Afghan leadership following a U.S. withdrawal.

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Map: The Offshore Leaks Revelations

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Get email updates on Secrecy for Sale, ICIJ and other Center for Public Integrity projects.

By Mar Cabra

January 23, 2014, 1:30 pm

Until now, no journalist had been able to crack the secret offshore money system on a global scale. But Offshore Leaks laid it bare: Columbia Journalism Review called it “a landmark series on offshore tax havens that has law enforcement scrambling and scofflaws sweating from Mongolia to Germany, Greece to the US.”

Hundreds of articles showed how fraudsters, politicians and the wealthy move and hide money. It took two years for the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists to piece it all together.

The result is a global investigative reporting project that has had unprecedented impact around the world. It prompted high profile resignations, criminal and civil inquiries, policy changes, and official investigations on four continents.

This week we published the last major chapter in the series: the extensive links of China’s elites to tax havens around the world.

We have gathered the stories from more than 60 countries and displayed them in an interactive map that illustrates the breadth of the work.

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Gangsters, Islamic Terrorists, Deathmatch

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English: The Muslim population of the world ma...

English: The Muslim population of the world map by percentage of each country, according to the Pew Forum 2009 report on world Muslim populations. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

June 17, 2012: The continuing violence in the Moslem south has led to 5,000 dead and 8,000 wounded in the last eight years. But it has also led to over 200,000 people leaving the area. Most of those fleeing have been Moslem. About 30 percent of the Buddhists in the south (who were 20 percent of the population in 2004) have fled and ten percent of the Moslems. Criminal gangs, whose main business is smuggling drugs and other contraband from Malaysia, have long dominated the area. The gangs agreed to support the Islamic terrorists, since both groups had something to gain by trying to weaken law and order in the area. While the gangs made it more difficult to improve the economy, they were more tolerable than the Islamic terrorists. All this has become too much for most Moslems. The Islamic terrorists wanted to expel all non-Moslems, shut down secular schools, and didn’t care if they made it difficult to improve the economy. This was too much for most of the Moslems the Islamic terrorists were supposed to be representing. Those that don’t flee are increasingly joining pro-government armed defense groups. The gangs and Islamic terror groups refuse to negotiate or quit, so it’s a fight to the death. The gangs will probably turn on their Islamic radical allies eventually, as the criminal organizations are not run by religious fanatics but business-minded entrepreneurs who are not keen on getting wiped out. Then again, the gangsters believe that the Islamic radicals will have to be killed, otherwise the southern gangsters will have some pretty deadly and determined enemies in their own backyard.

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