NATO's efforts to destroy Russia's Black Sea fleet is a practice run to destroy China's, Declan Hayes writes.
NATO's efforts to destroy Russia's Black Sea fleet is a practice run to destroy China's. Although some of the soldiers guiding those air and sea drones towards Crimea may be Ukrainians, most of them are undoubtedly British and American. As, of course, are the spy planes pinpointing their Russian targets.
Although Russia has adopted a softly softly approach to all this unprecedented aggression, our focus is on the longer game where NATO is trying to contain the Russian navy and coral the Russian army and air force. To NATO, Ukrainian sovereignty is of no account one way or the other. The main objective is to herd Russia's Armed Forces into a strategic stockade from which they have no way to drive forward. That seems to be working a charm in this NATO naval guerilla campaign against Sevastopol where NATO has exploited the grain deal corridors in much the same way that the Israeli air force hides behind civilian planes to bomb civilian Syrian targets.
Having steadied their Russian front, NATO can then turn their attention to the Chinese front which they hope will play out in a similar fashion. Because the Chinese Army has no need to cross the Russian border, it is redundant to external calculations unless it once again crosses the Yalu River.
Should a token force of 100,000 crack CPLA advisors, with Pyongyang's blessing, sweep southwards towards the 38th Parallel, that would considerably complicate matters for China's American friends as more maritime waters than they could presently handle would then be in play. Given that North Korea has thrown its weight behind Russia, Pyongyang would undoubtedly welcome such military help as China could provide in upgrading their missile and related technologies.
As the war against China will undoubtedly be primarily a maritime war, the Korean peninsula may not be quite in the eye of the storm, which will zero in on breaking China's main shipping routes. As things currently stand, North Korea is just a card China can keep in reserve until it is time to play it.
Josh Kozlov, the leader of the U.S. Army's 350th Spectrum Warfare Wing, and the British Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) are amongst the NATO worthies who have opined on the crucial role advanced electronic warfare is playing in the Black Sea and will play in the South China Sea. Given that Hansard has British Defence Secretary Ben Wallace on record calling Ukraine a "battle lab", a good try out for the best of British hardware and software, no doubt Wallace will enjoy a good stress test against Blighty's North Korean and Chinese electronic warfare peers.
Unelected European Union dictator Ursula von der Leyen, meanwhile, is complaining that China produces cheap electric cars. Those Chinese cads! How dare they copy Japan's economic growth tactics.
Japan, remember Japan, when the U.S. Occupation troops used to buy their imitation watches and battery radios as a joke during the Korean war. Seiko, Mitsubishi, Toshiba and Panasonic had the last laugh there.
As will the Chinese, unless von der Leyen's American bosses implement a naval blockade on China and thereby cut China off from her shipping routes to protect obsolete European competitors and "the rules based order".
Although the Yanks have proposed the alternative India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC) with the backing of the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Israel, and Jordan, the world and his mother know that is all hot air to pretend that NATO has a viable alternative to China's various economic infrastructural initiatives and that all this shadow boxing is a repeat of the prelude to The Great War when the rise of the German Navy's dreadnoughts and the proposed Berlin Baghdad railway were seen as fatal threats to the Royal Navy's maritime dominance.
Saudi Arabia, the UAE and the CIA hub of Jordan, which are all signed up to Team BRIICS, can expect plenty of NATO threats to come their way if they do not play ball and abandon the Chinese and, in Saudi's case, the Indians as well, who would also want to send cargo through Saudi waters as part of China's BRI initiative.
And though therailroad infrastructure linking Greece with Central Europe is a part of the BRI and Pakistan's Gwadar Port is part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), NATO would feel itself entitled to hijack them as part of their mercurial "rules-based order" just as, for the same Nordstream related reasons, the oil and gas pipes beneath the Black Sea are prime targets for NATO's Ukrainian proxies.
This is no conjecture. Senator Tom Cotton's report spells out in great detail that NATO need to decouple from China and the Cato Institute, the Bipartisan Policy Center and Australian nut job Dr Ross Babbage have all kindly informed us how this war with China will play out more or less as we previously outlined.
Writing for AsiaNikkei, Admiral James Stavridis, who was formerly the 16th Supreme Allied Commander of NATO, tells us that that, as in Ukraine, NATO's key advantage is in its allies, in its Filipino, Taiwanese, Korean and Japanese cannon fodder, in other words, and Forbes tells us that the key to success would be, as we said, a naval blockade.
Assuming, of course, China was not bullied into making the same mistakes Admiral Yamamoto's Imperial Japanese Navy were forced to make when they attacked Pearl Harbor and the American colony of the Philippines. All American bluster about their god-like omnipotence aside, the Chinese High Command has a full and comprehensive appreciation of the capabilities of America's military industrial complex and how it has progressed since China defanged it during the Korean war.
But let's also not forget the Indo China wars where the Viêt Minh had their HQ in a Hanoi ice cream bar and the Viêt Cong had their HQ in a Saigon noodle shop and where the great British travel writer Norman Lewis made some very pertinent comments about the Chinese, the Cambodians, the Laotians and particularly the Vietnamese when he documented his experiences in French Indo China at the start of the Second IndoChina war.
Advantage at Sea-Prevailing With Integrated All-Domain Naval Power spells out how the U.S. Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard will, like Britannia before Yamamoto showed up, rule the waves. Because NATO is making contingency plans to lace "the straits of Hormuz, Suez, Gibraltar, Malacca, Panama, and Dover" with mines to disrupt supply chains, so must China.
But, if we leave such primitively effective sabotage operations to one side, we can expect NATO to target the digital infrastructure which underwrites the movement of some six million containers transported in approximately 61,000 ships that comprise the world's trade outside of oil, gas and raw materials. American puppet von der Leyen, as indicated above, has already hinted at that tactic which, given China's disproportionate power over the infrastructure through which international trade flows, makes sense from the Pentagon's viewpoint. As they have already run many such pilot programs in insurance and banking against Russia over Ukraine, such efforts must also be factored into China's calculus which, given China's geographic and economic size, will be monumentally global in nature.
But then, because all politics is local, China must entice rather than coerce North Korea and Vietnam into its orbit, leaving the Vietnamese in particular with as much ambiguity as those inscrutable masters of intrigue need to defend their own interests in the East (South China) Sea. And, after Vietnam comes the Philippines, which has suffered as much from the Americans as have the Vietnamese. As with Hanoi, so also must China quietly make major diplomatic and economic inroads with Manila, whilst going easy on the jingoism. More carrot, less stick, in other words.
As regards Taiwan, all major players know there is no Chinese hurry there and that it is America and America alone which is using Taiwan as a casus belli. Finally, as regards the long-suffering people of Okinawa and all of Japan Yamamoto, in case they have not heard, is dead, assassinated by the Yanks in 1943. Not only can Japan, with or without another Yamamoto, not prevail in another war but there is no need for Japan to engage in such adventurism as there are much easier ways to commit hara-kiri than picking an unwinnable war with China to the south and Russia to the north.
The Japanese, like the Chinese, should hone their diplomatic skills, perhaps with the help of their good friends in Hanoi and Bangkok and the good people of Taiwan, where Japan and the Japanese are both much admired.
The governments of China, Vietnam, Thailand, Korea, Japan, the Philippines and those close to them have much more important things to attend to than killing each other to enhance the bottom lines of Lockheed Martin, Northrop, and BAE Systems and ensure further kickbacks for the Capitol Hill war hawks those gangsters bribe. The way forward for all of them is to work together for mutual and mutually respectful economic development, to enhance their military capabilities as needed and to ignore, as much as they can, the tone deaf war drums the Yanks and their toadies are never done beating to death.