Asia

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 »

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Global Cyber Spying Incidents Triple in 2013

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By April 22, 2014 11:51 GM

Cyber surveillance

Reports of espionage hacking increased significantly in 2013, with a growing proportion of attacks attributed to Eastern European governments.

A comprehensive study on global cybersecurity has revealed that hacking for the purposes of spying grew significantly in 2013, partly as a result of increased cyber-espionage from eastern Europe.

The Data Breach Investigations Report, an annual security study by US telecoms firm Verizon, detailed more than 63,000 confirmed security incidents reported by 50 major organisations. Read the rest of this entry »

Sri Lanka: Women’s Insecurity in the North and East

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Saila gets ready for work
Image by DFID - UK Department for International Development via Flickr

Asia Report N°217 20 Dec 2011

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY AND RECOMMENDATIONS

Women in Sri Lanka’s predominantly Tamil-speaking north and east are facing a desperate lack of security in the aftermath of the long civil war. Today many still live in fear of violence from various sources. Those who fall victim to it have little means of redress. Women’s economic security is precarious, and their physical mobility is limited. The heavily militarised and centralised control of the north and east – with almost exclusively male, Sinhalese security forces – raises particular problems for women there in terms of their safety, sense of security and ability to access assistance. They have little control over their lives and no reliable institutions to turn to. The government has mostly dismissed women’s security issues and exacerbated fears, especially in the north and east. The international community has failed to appreciate and respond effectively to the challenges faced by women and girls in the former war zone. A concerted and immediate effort to empower and protect them is needed.

Thirty years of civil war between the government and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) has resulted in tens of thousands of female-headed households in the north and east. Families throughout those areas experienced many waves of conflict, displacement and militarisation. In the war’s final stages in 2008 and 2009, hundreds of thousands of civilians in the northern Vanni region endured serial displacements and months of being shelled by the government and held hostage by the LTTE, after which they were herded into closed government camps. Most lost nearly all possessions and multiple family members, many of whom are still missing or detained as suspected LTTE cadres. When families eventually returned to villages, homes and land had been destroyed or taken over by the military. There was less physical destruction in the east, which was retaken by the government in 2007, but those communities have also suffered and now live under the tight grip of the military and central government. Read the rest of this entry »

Pakistan-Nato Links Strained After Air Strike

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Pakistan is reportedly set to review all diplomatic, military and intelligence links with the US and Nato following a deadly cross-border attack on a border checkpoint…

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Silva Carvalho também ‘espiado’ na Wikileaks

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A WikiLeaks publica um documento com a análise de Jorge Silva Carvalho sobre as interferências e manobras da Austrália em Timor e a transmissão das preocupações portuguesas face à interferência australiana que fez à embaixada americana em Lisboa. Pelo vista, até há uma tradição de intercepção das comunicações da secreta portuguesa… Mal sabia o discreto Silva Carvalho que a tanta exposição e visibilidade estava destinado! O documento é muito interessante, sobretudo, porque mostra bem como o SIED estava bem informado sobre a situação no terreno em Timor e sobre as manobras australianas e seus objectivos (controlo do gás e petróleo de Timor).

Portugal’s intelligence chief accused Australia

of “fomenting unrest” in East Timor

By Patrick O’Connor  25 April 2011

Leaked diplomatic cables sent from the US embassy in Lisbon, Portugal in June 2006 have revealed that a leading Portuguese intelligence official told American diplomatic officials that the Australian government had repeatedly “fomented unrest” in East Timor, in order to advance its “geopolitical and commercial interests.” The extraordinary exchange occurred two weeks after Canberra had dispatched a military intervention force to the oil and gas rich state, as part of its “regime change” campaign against Timorese Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri.

The Australian government, then led by John Howard, targeted Alkatiri because of his perceived alignment with rival powers, especially Portugal, Timor’s former colonial ruler, and China. The Fretilin party leader was also despised by Canberra for his extraction of unwelcome concessions during negotiations over the division of the Timor Sea’s energy resources.

Read the rest of this entry »

British Foreign Office warns UK citizens about threat of terrorism in Azerbaijan

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February 8, 2011 – 15:15 AMT 11:15 GMT

PanARMENIAN.NetBritish Foreign and Commonwealth Office continues to remind UK citizens on the undesirability of visits to certain regions of the world; however, the travel advice is updated rarely, with the last upgrade dating back several years.

As the press office of the British embassy in Yerevan told PanARMENIAN.Net new announcement posted on Baku’s British embassy’s website warns about threats of terrorism in Azerbaijan. “Attacks on civilians are possible at cites visited by foreigners,” the message stresses. Read the rest of this entry »

Scottish aid worker kidnapped in Afghanistan

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private security

Search for hostages after firefight

Published: 27/09/2010

AN URGENT search is under way to find a female British aid worker abducted in Afghanistan.

The woman, who is reported to be Scottish and in her 30s, was kidnapped in Kunar province, alongside three Afghans with whom she is thought to have been working. Read the rest of this entry »