Thursday, June 9, 2016

Coming Wars

Everything seems to be pointing towards war these days...They are coming, it's just a matter of time:

New Tensions Erupt In The East China Sea, This Time With A Russian Twist

In the latest round of tensions to erupt in the East China Sea, Japanese officials say a Chinese warship was spotted for the first time near disputed islands that Japan claims control over.
The islands are called Senkaku in Japan, and Diaoyu in China, and while China regularly sends nonmilitary patrol vessels to the area, this was the first time a Chinese warship was spotted. Japan's Vice Foreign Minister Akitaka Saiki summoned the Chinese ambassador in Tokyo around 2 a.m. to express serious concern over the matter. The warship, a frigate, was spotted less than 24 nautical miles from the uninhabited island chain the NYT reports.

The above islands are known as Senkaku in Japan, and Diaoyu in China
The Chinese frigate entered a band of ocean around the disputed islands that are just beyond exclusive territorial waters in what Japan claims as a "contiguous zone." Japanese vessels were in contact with the Chinese frigate as it approached the zone and warned it for about two hours to change course before it entered.
"China's actions unilaterally escalate tensions in the area, and we are seriously concerned" said the Japanese chief cabinet secretary Yoshihide Suga at a news briefing, while adding that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe ordered the Japanese Navy and Coast Guard to be on alert.
China responded in kind, with the Ministry of National Defense saying "We've noted the relevant reports. The Diaoyu Islands and affiliated islands are Chinese territory. For China's military vessels to pass through waters under the country's own jurisdiction is reasonable and legitimate, and other countries have no right to make irresponsible claims."
In an interesting twist, Japan said two Russian vessels were also spotted in the islands contiguous zone around the same time, though it was unclear whether their presence was connected with the Chinese frigate. Japanese officials said they did not protest the Russian vessels.
Japanese foreign minister Akitaka Saiki said that "China has its own particular claim, Russia doesn't, so we distinguish between the Chinese and Russian actions and respond accordingly."
Of course the situation begs the question whether or not Russia and China were working the East China Sea together in a show of somy type of solidarity with one another, or was it purely a "coincidence" that on the heels of all of the US led tension in both China and Russia lately that the two would both be in the same waters just after the US promised to keep its military might in the region for "decades to come."

The islands have been long disputed between the two nations, recall that back in 2012 anti-Japan sentiment exploded in China when the Japanese government purchased the islands from a private owner, something China of course viewed as illegal.
The event spurred riots in China, and the protests got so severe that  Japanese firms with production within China had to shut down, with expatriates urged to stay indoors. The situation further escalated to the point where in late 2013, China unveiled an "Air Defense Identification Zone" in the region, which required that any overflights submit their plans to Beijing in advance.

As tensions escalate to dangerous levels in the South China Sea and in eastern European interesting decision has been made be the Chinese government.
According to Sputnik, back in January the People's Liberation Army Air Force was preparing to develop a new fleet of stealth fighters and heavy transport aircraft. The heavy transport aircraft, the Xian Y-20 transport, was going to be built in order to give Beijing a "fast and reliable platform" to deliver arms and soldiers over long distances.

During a technology exhibition in Beijing, Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) elaborated on the governments plans for the Y-20. Although originally thought that Beijing would want only 400,  "More than 1,000 Y-20s will be needed" said Zhu Qian, head of AVIC's large aircraft development office - the reason? "Based on the experience of the United States and Russia" Zhu says.

Now that's an interesting nugget of information. So due to the fact that the US and Russia are at odds, China needs 1,000 heavy transport aircraft - why would that be, is China planning on getting involved if ever the US and Russia got into a military dispute?

So to summarize, due to what's happening between Russia and the United States, China has ordered nearly triple the amount of heavy transport aircraft it originally intended so that it could take tanks and other military equipment anywhere in Europe.

The threat of a terrorist group like the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) using nuclear material to carry out a “dirty bomb” attack against the West is the highest since the Cold War came to an end, warns a leading international think tank on proliferation.

According to the International Luxembourg Forum on Preventing Nuclear Catastrophe, the jihadist group is “actively trying to acquire weapons of mass destruction [WMDs]”:

[ISIS] has already carried out numerous chemical weapons attacks in Syria; we know it wants to go further by carrying out a nuclear attack in the heart of Europe. This, combined with poor levels of security at a host of nuclear research centers in the former Soviet Union mean the threat of a possible ‘dirty-bomb’ attack on a Western capital is high.

The Independent reports that Dr. Viatcheslav Moshe Kantor, the think tank’s president, declared:

The warning from the organization is consistent with a June 2015 assessment by Australia’s Foreign Minister Julie Bishop. Citing Australia’s departments of Defense and Foreign Affairs, as well as NATO, she told The Australian that ISIS had gained access to radioactive material from hospital and research centers in territory it captured in Iraq and Syria, raising the likelihood that the jihadist group could develop a large “dirty” bomb.
Moreover, ISIS, in the ninth edition of its propaganda magazine Dabiq, published last year, indicated that it could purchase a nuclear weapon in Pakistan, take it to Nigeria, and then smuggle it into the United States through Mexico by using existing trafficking networks in Latin America.
ISIS has established a growing presence in the region of Pakistan, the only Muslim nation with a nuclear arsenal.
“It shouldn’t be a surprise that if terrorists get hold of nuclear material they will try to use it. We also know that they are seeking such material; there were reports, for example, of Isis getting hold of uranium when they captured Mosul,” added former U.K. Defense Secretary Des Browne, a member of the forum and vice-chairman of the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI), noting that the threat of nuclear terrorism required attention from the international community.

In 2015, the Australian foreign minister said that the nuclear threat linked to ISIS is severe enough to have gained the attention of the Australia Group, an alliance of about 40 nations, plus the European Community, established 30 years ago to prevent the export of materials that can be used to develop chemical, biological, and radiological weapons.

Photo shows the moment when a Royal Navy frigate intercepted a Russian submarine

On Sunday the Royal Navy's HMS Kent frigate ship intercepted a Russian Kilo-class submarine, after it surfaced in the North Sea off the Eastern coast of England.

Russia's Stary Oskol, capable of carrying torpedoes and cruise missiles, was on its way towards the English Channel.

After the incident, which is the latest of many involving Russian military vehicles encroaching in NATO territory, Russian state-run media claimed that the friendly submarine was being towed by a tugboat, even waving at passing merchant ships.
However, the photo released by the Royal Navy doesn't show a tugboat at all. 
In fact, Russian sub activity and sightings have increased so much that Vice Admiral James Foggo III of the US Navy wrote that the uptick was the beginning of a "fourth battle of the Atlantic."

"Not only have Russia's actions and capabilities increased in alarming and confrontational ways, its national-security policy is aimed at challenging the United States and its NATO allies and partners," Foggo wrote in the June issue of Proceedings, the US Naval Institutes monthly publication.

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