Christmas Greetings from TOC and Liberty Unyielding

Joy to the world.

A light to lighten the darkness.
A light to lighten the darkness.

New post up at Liberty Unyielding.  God bless us, every one, and Merry Christmas!

U.S. airlines expected to comply with Chinese ADIZ rules

Weak.

According to the State Department, the United States expects our airline carriers will comply with the ADIZ rules laid out by China in the Notice to Airmen announcing enforcement of the ADIZ.

As with the distinction we are observing with respect to Iran’s right to enrich uranium, our acceptance of the ADIZ rules does not mean we agree with them, according to the State Department formulation.  It just means our civilian airliners are complying with them.

Japan and South Korea are taking a different tack. Continue reading “U.S. airlines expected to comply with Chinese ADIZ rules”

Strange but True in the Far East

Eating foot, triangulating in a region of bombastitude.

Now and then, it’s good to check in with the other side of the world.  U.S. cabinet secretaries John Kerry and Chuck Hagel have been doing that this past week – and you might think it would be hard to top the strange-but-true message their respective diplomatic displays have sent.

But you’d be underestimating the Far East if you did.  To set the stage, we note that U.S. and foreign analysts believe North Korea has restarted the plutonium reactor at Yongbyon in the last few weeks.  This is, of course, a move against which Pyongyang has been warned.  It comes on the heels of Continue reading “Strange but True in the Far East”

Wrong, hackneyed, overworked: Beyond the usual analysis of “China and North Korea”

Is there any piece of received wisdom more universally invoked than the inane piety that China wants to calm North Korea down, and gets annoyed when the Kims act up?  It’s hard to think of many.  This hoary premise gets trotted out every time.  And every time, it comes up short on explanatory or operational value.  It’s never relevant to why the Kim went crazy.  Nor is China coming down on a Kim ever the key to settling the Kim’s hash.  If the snarling Kim stops yelping for a while, it’s always because the U.S. was induced to do something – intensify some negotiating stance, make some offer, fork over some “aid,” make a concession to China; or maybe just look alert enough to make it the wrong time for a showdown.

You’d think someone would figure this out. Continue reading “Wrong, hackneyed, overworked: Beyond the usual analysis of “China and North Korea””

The Shakiest Nukes in the West

“Listen up, yo: I’m deterring you now”

In case everyone in Northeast Asia missed it, in spite of their intelligence and early-warning networks which have assuredly been tracking it in fine detail, the Obama Defense Department announced on Monday that the U.S. has been deterring North Korea by sending B-52 bombers on practice runs in its vicinity.  The specter of nuclear deterrence was clarified by Deputy Secretary Ashton Carter:

Deputy defense secretary Ashton Carter said during a visit to South Korea on Monday that the bomber flights are part of the U.S. “extended deterrence”—the use of U.S. nuclear forces to deter North Korea, which conducted its third underground nuclear test Feb. 12.

Nukes! I say.  Nukes!  Pay attention, dudes.

As Bill Gertz demurely puts it, Continue reading “The Shakiest Nukes in the West”