Sunday, March 13, 2005

My Crystal Ball.

Gerhard Schroder has announced that he is in favor of lifting Germany's arms embargo on China. So has Jacques Chirac. When asked about lifting the arms embargo, Schroder claimed:

"It was a justified reaction to the massacre at Tiananmen Square. Now there is a new government in place in China that has taken modest steps toward liberalization. For me that is certainly not enough. But still, first steps have been taken, and therefore I think the embargo is ready to be lifted. Germany has no intentions whatsoever of delivering weapons to China." Time Magazine, 2/28 page 6.

The United States, despite voicing its concern over the EU's interest in lifting the embargo, continues to give China the coveted Most Favored Nation trading stamp of approval. Let's think about this. The EU is giving their approval for arms transactions and the US is providing the dough. Recall that China is approaching the Taiwanese issue with increasing hostility.

And we act surprised when we see global conflict. It doesn't take a fortune teller to see this one coming.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vavoom, You are definitely on to something! Excellent analysis.

9:07 PM  
Anonymous little john said...

Why would the PRC choose to risk the ire of the very markets it depends on to keep its citizens docile? If the PRC attacked the ROC do you think the US would rescind MFN? How about Europe? Who would the PRC sell their DVD's, toys, clothes and coffee mugs to then?

2:37 PM  
Blogger Vavoom said...

Methinks they see US threats as bluffs. Even if they attacked Taiwan they'd still have customers to buy their products.

2:44 PM  
Anonymous little john said...

Do you see our (the U.S.'s) comments on the subject as bluffs?

1:49 PM  
Blogger Vavoom said...

No, I haven't. Please direct me to where you've read that.

1:59 PM  
Anonymous little john said...

I think I may have miscommunicated to you V. I didn't mean to say you saw our (US) policy to defend Taiwan as a bluff. You wrote in an earlier comment that the PRC sees our committment to Taiwan as a bluff. I was wondering if you think the US is serious in its intent to defend Taiwan against PRC aggresssion? Some on the conservative side don't think we will stay true to our word in defending Taiwan.

4:24 PM  
Blogger Vavoom said...

LJ: I just don't see the US getting involved militarily. Given that our military is overcommitted, there's no way we'll take on China.

11:42 PM  
Anonymous little john said...

I agree that "overstretch" is an issue right now. Myabe it would be a good time for the PRC to act. Of course there is the U.S. Taiwan Relations Act which mandates certain U.S. responses. Of course laws have been ignored in the past by those in D.C. There is a thoughtful article in the latest Foreign Affairs jornal (March/April 2005) by Kenneth Lieberthal entitled, "Preventing a Warm Over Taiwan" that addresses this very issue. Mao told Nixon and Kissinger that reunification could wait "100 years".

8:25 PM  
Blogger Vavoom said...

LJ: Thanks for the suggestion on the article. I'll take a look at it and report back. I just don't think we have the capability to defend Taiwan even if we wanted to.

9:33 PM  
Anonymous little john said...

You're probably right about that. Plus I don't think we (U.S. citizens) really care about Taiwan's ultimate fate.

11:23 AM  

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