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Ukraine took our eye off the threat
While Washington told Americans to wear blue and yellow and pledge their allegiance to the Ukraine flag in the name of freedom, a real threat rose to America’s south. Red China is becoming the most influential nation to South America as it tethers South American countries to its growing economy.
The U.S. Naval Institute reported on March 8, “Recent Chinese actions, like financing a $3 billion container port, establishing a space monitoring station near the Straits of Magellan and buying lithium mining operations in three South American nations, pose increasing risks to U.S. security, senior military commanders said Wednesday.
“The Chinese activities are a relentless march to replace the United States as a leader in the region, Army Gen. Laura Richardson, the top officer at Southern Command, testified before the House Armed Services Committee.
“The USA needs to keep the Panama Canal, the Straits of Magellan and Drake Passage open to maritime trade, she said. Richardson voiced concern over the dual-use capabilities of these state-owned enterprises and Chinese companies expanding their reach in the hemisphere.
“As an example of that threat, she warned the Chinese Space Agency station in Argentina used to explore the dark side of the moon and track satellites could also be used for targeting.”
Red China plays the international game well.
Since George Walker Bush allowed Red China to join the World Trade Organization on December 11, 2001, Red China has racked up trillion-dollar trade surpluses — and used that money to build its economy, build its military, pay off politicians like Biden worldwide, and take over regions with its Belt and Road Initiative that builds infrastructure around the world that chain nations to Red China.
The Ukraine War has served as a diversion from the rise of Red China in Latin America. How odd that liberals who denounce nationalism as racist became instant Ukraine nationalists once Zelensky quoted Churchill — you know, the man whose bust Obama tossed out of the Oval Office.
Every action Biden takes helps Red China, particularly the economic sanctions, which have pushed Russia, Iran, Iraq and Saudi Arabia closer to the communist country. This is not by accident nor is it the unintentional consequence of his arbitrary and reckless attack on the Russian economy. Chairman Xi paid Biden well and Biden has proven to be worth every yuan he received.
As a bonus, America is not paying attention to Red China’s progress in this hemisphere.
Six weeks into the war, Diana Roy wrote for the Council on Foreign Relations, “China’s role in Latin America has grown rapidly since 2000, promising economic opportunity even while raising concerns over Beijing’s influence. China’s state firms are major investors in the region’s energy, infrastructure, and space industries, and the country has surpassed the United States as South America’s largest trading partner. Beijing has also expanded its diplomatic, cultural, and military presence. Most recently, it has leveraged its support in the fight against COVID-19, supplying the region with medical equipment, loans, and hundreds of millions of vaccine doses.”
For being a bunch of communists, Red China’s officials are clever, They invented a virus, spread it around the world, and peddled medical equipment, loans and fake vaccine doses. (There is no covid vaccine.) Ca-ching!
Red China takes South America’s resources, turns them into products and sells them back to South Americans — undercutting local manufacturers.
Roy wrote, “Latin American exports to China are mainly soybeans, copper, petroleum, oil, and other raw materials that the country needs to drive its industrial development. In return, the region mostly imports higher-value-added manufactured products, a trade some experts say has undercut local industries with cheaper Chinese goods. Beijing has free trade agreements in place with Chile, Costa Rica, and Peru, and twenty Latin American countries have so far signed on to China’s Belt and Road Initiative.”
Red China is turning independent nations into vassal states. Those who rage loudest against colonialism support Red China’s colonization.
Whereas West Europe brought Christianity and hope to the benighted corners of the world, Red China brings authoritarianism and despair. And Nikes. And Apple gadgets. And eventually subjugation.
We are trading our freedoms for beads just as the Indians sold Manhattan. The difference is the Indians had someplace else to go. We do not.
Red China also is a loan shark.
Roy wrote, “The state-owned China Development Bank and the Export-Import Bank of China are among the region’s leading lenders; between 2005 and 2020, they together loaned some $137 billion to Latin American governments, often in exchange for oil and used to fund energy and infrastructure projects. Venezuela is the biggest borrower; it’s taken on loans worth $62 billion since 2007. China is also a voting member of the Inter-American Development Bank and the Caribbean Development Bank.
“However, these ties have raised some concerns, particularly among regional governments. While Chinese loans often have fewer conditions attached, dependence on them can push economically unstable countries such as Venezuela into what critics call debt traps that could result in default.”
Could? Try will.
The Daily Mail reported this weekend, “As headlines about the frosty relationship between China and the United States are dominated by spy balloons, Taiwan and botched attempts at diplomacy, commanders in the Pentagon are increasingly worried by a more insidious threat: Beijing’s growing stronghold on Latin America.
“From tens of billions of dollars in funding for key infrastructure projects across the region to its own secretive, military-run space station in Argentina that could target American satellites, China’s presence has grown.
“Some 21 countries in Latin America are signed up to Beijing’s Belt and Road Initiative — a defining policy introduced by President Xi Jinping in 2013 that wins power and influence by funding global infrastructure projects.
“Chinese state banks have loaned $136 billion to Latin American countries since 2005 with terms US officials have dubbed a spiraling trap. The cash has funded everything from major energy projects to roads, sports stadiums and covid vaccines.
“Meanwhile, private Chinese firms control major ports on the Panama Canal which US officials say could be turned quickly toward military capabilities. They supply the majority of Mexico's telecoms equipment and mine vast amounts of crucial minerals on the continent.”
As a West Virginian, I know what this is. Red China is becoming a company store for countries that mine cobalt, lithium and other rare earth minerals. The world will mine until it dies trying to pay for the baubles and even food it bought from the communists. And America’s communists — including National Review — mocked us by saying this was only the free market at play. Why if you object to Red China undercutting American industry, you are anti-capitalist.
We give billions we don’t have to Ukraine in the name of a freedom they don’t have as Zelensky uses the war to close churches and opposition parties. Meanwhile, Red China uses the trillions it actually has to buy off the politicians to control the world.
If we continue down this path — Belt and Road, if you will — we had better learn Mandarin Chinese because that is what our grandchildren will be speaking.
For those who complain that the cat’s TOTALLY SCIENTIFIC POLL frequently is too hard and should include both as an answer, you are in luck because today’s poll includes an all-of-the-above choice.